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The Fate of the Fallen

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‘This precise and beautifully crafted novel blooms from its ascetic opening to a resonant and rewarding climax. Makes what’s currently available on fantasy shelves seem hackneyed and formulaic. Utterly absorbing.” Stephen Davenport, Independent Weekly. After ten years of servitude, Nish is about to be released from the blackest prison of the maimed God-Emperor, Jal-Nish Hla ‘This precise and beautifully crafted novel blooms from its ascetic opening to a resonant and rewarding climax. Makes what’s currently available on fantasy shelves seem hackneyed and formulaic. Utterly absorbing.” Stephen Davenport, Independent Weekly. After ten years of servitude, Nish is about to be released from the blackest prison of the maimed God-Emperor, Jal-Nish Hlar, his corrupt father. Jal-Nish holds the two sorcerous quicksilver tears, Gatherer and Reaper, and with them controls all of the Secret Art. All opposition having been crushed, he has begun to remake the world in his depraved image. The only hope of overthrowing him lies in Nish, whom the oppressed peoples of the world see as a messianic figure, the Deliverer for, as Nish was dragged off to prison a decade ago, he wildly promised to return and cast down his father. Unfortunately Nish is powerless and without allies. But worse, his father wants Nish to become his lieutenant and become as corrupt as he is. Jal-Nish offers Nish everything he has ever desired and, faced with the unbearable alternative of another ten years in prison, he isn't sure he can resist the temptation. http://www.ian-irvine.com/tormentstra... REVIEWS "Another blockbuster fantasy series.' Colin Steele, Canberra Times. 'Whether you like interesting characters, good description or a well thought out world, this book is bound to impress you. Don't let its somewhat hefty size put you off – it only means that you get to keep reading longer.' Nicole Juliette, Dreamhosters.com


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‘This precise and beautifully crafted novel blooms from its ascetic opening to a resonant and rewarding climax. Makes what’s currently available on fantasy shelves seem hackneyed and formulaic. Utterly absorbing.” Stephen Davenport, Independent Weekly. After ten years of servitude, Nish is about to be released from the blackest prison of the maimed God-Emperor, Jal-Nish Hla ‘This precise and beautifully crafted novel blooms from its ascetic opening to a resonant and rewarding climax. Makes what’s currently available on fantasy shelves seem hackneyed and formulaic. Utterly absorbing.” Stephen Davenport, Independent Weekly. After ten years of servitude, Nish is about to be released from the blackest prison of the maimed God-Emperor, Jal-Nish Hlar, his corrupt father. Jal-Nish holds the two sorcerous quicksilver tears, Gatherer and Reaper, and with them controls all of the Secret Art. All opposition having been crushed, he has begun to remake the world in his depraved image. The only hope of overthrowing him lies in Nish, whom the oppressed peoples of the world see as a messianic figure, the Deliverer for, as Nish was dragged off to prison a decade ago, he wildly promised to return and cast down his father. Unfortunately Nish is powerless and without allies. But worse, his father wants Nish to become his lieutenant and become as corrupt as he is. Jal-Nish offers Nish everything he has ever desired and, faced with the unbearable alternative of another ten years in prison, he isn't sure he can resist the temptation. http://www.ian-irvine.com/tormentstra... REVIEWS "Another blockbuster fantasy series.' Colin Steele, Canberra Times. 'Whether you like interesting characters, good description or a well thought out world, this book is bound to impress you. Don't let its somewhat hefty size put you off – it only means that you get to keep reading longer.' Nicole Juliette, Dreamhosters.com

30 review for The Fate of the Fallen

  1. 5 out of 5

    Skwerlie

    I don't like this 5-star-review system! I've rated this book at 3 stars along with some of the books from the previous View from the Mirror and Well of Echoes series, but I certainly would call this book a low 3 stars and those a high 3 stars (but I don't think this book only deserves 2 stars), so far I am not liking this series as much as either of the previous two. One of the things I enjoy about Ian Irvine's fantasy novels is that they are a bit gritty, characters have to walk places and it t I don't like this 5-star-review system! I've rated this book at 3 stars along with some of the books from the previous View from the Mirror and Well of Echoes series, but I certainly would call this book a low 3 stars and those a high 3 stars (but I don't think this book only deserves 2 stars), so far I am not liking this series as much as either of the previous two. One of the things I enjoy about Ian Irvine's fantasy novels is that they are a bit gritty, characters have to walk places and it takes a long time, maybe they don't have enough food, maybe their boots wear out, maybe they have to do all this walking around with no food and lousy supplies while injured. They aren't just happpily wandering around on adventures through forests that always seem to be full of fresh fruits and lots of easily-caught and delicious little critters (they eat bugs and slugs and mouldy bits of whatever they can get). But the Song of the Tears series seems to be much grimmer, and I'm not sure I like the at times almost hopeless atmosphere. In the other books, characters were struggling for various things, fighting, maybe the situations were a bit hopeless but you always felt they had a chance. In this book it has seemed to me as though the "good guys" don't actually have a chance of winning, and so when they do something that goes well it seems that much more improbable- and not necessarily in a good "wow, they really lucked out and scraped by there!" way- in a "well the author will clearly have the good guys win, even though it may seem absurd" way. It's not really as much fun to read a book like that, even when there are failures and challenges mixed in. I'll wait for the next book in the series and see, the other two I felt improved as the series progressed, perhaps the same will be true for this final Three Worlds series.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Loren Harway

    I was eagerly looking forward to this after the excruciating ending of the last series. This latest installment was very Irvine-deeply depressing, making you want to curl up and cry on the floor at the hopelessness of their situtation. Still it is a masterpiece perhaps not as enthralling as the previous but these are early days, the next book promises to expand the cast (and bring back old and very old characters). Gory and sexy as always the writing makes you want to stab yourself again and again I was eagerly looking forward to this after the excruciating ending of the last series. This latest installment was very Irvine-deeply depressing, making you want to curl up and cry on the floor at the hopelessness of their situtation. Still it is a masterpiece perhaps not as enthralling as the previous but these are early days, the next book promises to expand the cast (and bring back old and very old characters). Gory and sexy as always the writing makes you want to stab yourself again and again and again... and then hunt down the bastard that wrote it and continue with him. I don't think many people know of this series, many abandoned Irvine after his horrifying end to the quartet and wouldn't bother checking for another. His other trilogies seem to expand into quartets (Chamaera looked to be hoping for a fifth book), perhaps we can expect a quartet despite his promises.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Julie

    It was an okay read. I thought the concept was overall good but it was a little hard to follow at times. The protagonist was kind of annoying because she was constantly doing very brave and truly heroic things but she acted sooooooo weak. Like it was over the top. She should have had a little confidence after she made many daring escapes, risked her life a million times, and killed some dudes. I don’t think I will be moving on to the second book. Oh also, it ends at a really weird point. I feel It was an okay read. I thought the concept was overall good but it was a little hard to follow at times. The protagonist was kind of annoying because she was constantly doing very brave and truly heroic things but she acted sooooooo weak. Like it was over the top. She should have had a little confidence after she made many daring escapes, risked her life a million times, and killed some dudes. I don’t think I will be moving on to the second book. Oh also, it ends at a really weird point. I feel like the author was going for a cliff hanger but it was too much in the middle of the action and it felt awkward to end so abruptly.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Maggie

    So I've been reading fantasy novels since I was in second grade starting with Tolkien's famous "The Hobbit" and more recently reading my way through George R.R. Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire". I admit to not having read Irvine's previous series so I don't have the background knowledge. However, I've read follow up series before with no problems and loved them. This book, sadly, does not fall in that category. Halfway through it, I'm about to throw in the towel because I don't believe in tortu So I've been reading fantasy novels since I was in second grade starting with Tolkien's famous "The Hobbit" and more recently reading my way through George R.R. Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire". I admit to not having read Irvine's previous series so I don't have the background knowledge. However, I've read follow up series before with no problems and loved them. This book, sadly, does not fall in that category. Halfway through it, I'm about to throw in the towel because I don't believe in torturing myself. The plot is wonderful but the story progression completely ruins the reading experience. The characters' thoughts and actions make no sense. I mean, at some point you have to stop coming to the same realization over and over that this person is manipulating you or that falling asleep in the middle of a dangerous area near people who want to kill you is a bad idea. Characters also have this annoying god-modding habit where they are horribly injured on page A and almost fully recovered on page B. It feels more often than not like there a holes in the story where Irvine just wrote ideas and forgot to link them together in a way that makes sense. I don't know how many times I've had to stop and wonder if I missed something only to reread several chapters and discover that there really isn't anything leading up to what just occurred. To end on a positive note, I will give Irvine some points for not making this story horribly dependent on past novels.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Zaryna

    This one was the least challenging of Irvines works I've read since The View from the Mirror. Possibly because I already knew the main character Nish and a few others along the way. In this one Irvine didn't dawdle. It wasn't just these scenes of extremely full on action where the characters suddenly either suceed or fail. The story was a journey, it took me along the whole way, and because of the I really enjoyed it.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    Utterly riviting! I feel like I waited for this book to come out forever. Recommended for any fan of fantasy, Ian Irvine is a fantastic writer.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Peter

    After 120 pages in the company of complete idiots I gave up. Shame really: the plot had promise but the characterisation and storytelling was so naive. Sorry :(

  8. 4 out of 5

    Gareth

    Listened via audio book rather than read this time around. I think the weakest book in all the Santhenar books thus far. While the world building is still very good, with continual references to ruins / strange artefacts from long ago that I always enjoy. Plot is also its usual convoluted, twisty self, with plenty of surprises, good and bad, along the way. What lowers the score for this book though is the main characters. We don't have some of my favourites from past books (Tiaan, Irisis, Yggur Listened via audio book rather than read this time around. I think the weakest book in all the Santhenar books thus far. While the world building is still very good, with continual references to ruins / strange artefacts from long ago that I always enjoy. Plot is also its usual convoluted, twisty self, with plenty of surprises, good and bad, along the way. What lowers the score for this book though is the main characters. We don't have some of my favourites from past books (Tiaan, Irisis, Yggur etc) and the characters here seem to keep falling into the same sort of cycle - make a decision, it turns out to be wrong, really regret the decision made, but carry on to make the same sort of decision again next time. Sometimes they make what really seems to be the 'right' decision given the information they have at the time, but the story punishes them for this as well, so things then go bad, and possibly due to this, they never seem to grow from this. Another common irritation, is when they mention that time is running short / they only have moments to act, they seem to have time to admire the scenery / take in details of what everyone is wearing etc. This may be just the nature of a book / audio book, where the time taken to read / listen is quite different to the internal thought processing time, but is a bit jarring. I will continue to listen to the other books (which I haven't read or listened to before) as still keen to know what happens next, but I do hope the characters improve!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Alex Passey

    It's not like this book was completely terrible. I can definitely see some teenager picking it up as their first step into swords and sorcery beyond LOTR and thinking it's a pretty good read. But compared to a lot of the other really great high fantasy out there, this doesn't measure up. The story telling was so linear, with very little expansive world-building that went beyond what was necessary to satisfy immediate plot conditions. The magic system was pretty amorphous, allowing obstacles to b It's not like this book was completely terrible. I can definitely see some teenager picking it up as their first step into swords and sorcery beyond LOTR and thinking it's a pretty good read. But compared to a lot of the other really great high fantasy out there, this doesn't measure up. The story telling was so linear, with very little expansive world-building that went beyond what was necessary to satisfy immediate plot conditions. The magic system was pretty amorphous, allowing obstacles to be overcome by what magical precepts that hadn't been previously hinted at. The term deus ex magica comes to mind. The characters were pretty two dimensional, and there wasn't a lot of memorable banter. The prose as a whole left quite a bit to be desired. But to be fair, there was a good deal of imagination here. Some aspects of this world were interesting and compelling. I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone, but there are worse things you could spend your time reading.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Christian

    For those of you who didn't read the first series before reading this, you do not have to for the first 70% of the book. However, (keeping this spoiler free) I recommend it for the last part. I unfortunately didn't read the first series thinking this was the first series. oops. By itself, this is an incredibly dark fantasy. I kept thinking I was reading a book dedicated to Nurgle of Warhammer 40k. The story descriptions are depressing, smothering, disgusting and so visually realistic that I felt For those of you who didn't read the first series before reading this, you do not have to for the first 70% of the book. However, (keeping this spoiler free) I recommend it for the last part. I unfortunately didn't read the first series thinking this was the first series. oops. By itself, this is an incredibly dark fantasy. I kept thinking I was reading a book dedicated to Nurgle of Warhammer 40k. The story descriptions are depressing, smothering, disgusting and so visually realistic that I felt queasy while reading but I couldn't stop. I would compare the tone of this fantasy with Steven Erikson's Malazan series due to the general societally treatment of the human body and spirit. I also liked it enough that I will read book 2 of this series but probably will not go back to read the first series. I am assuming its spoiled for me now after reading this book. recommended

  11. 4 out of 5

    Edel Ryder-hanrahan

    It was okay. It's hard for me to put my finger on the stuff that bugged me except I kept having "oh this tired old trope again?" feelings. Tropes aren't bad in books - I even actively wants a little familiarity when I hunt for a new fantasy setting, but it just wasn't doing it for me here. There was honestly not a single character who I was rooting for either. Unlikely to read book 2, but then I am a sucker for completing a story, so you'd never know.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Taygus

    Listened to the Audiobook. soooo much tension. You're constantly left wondering if they'll make it. It feels like you're on the run right beside them. I liked the characters, even the nasty cruel ones are very well described. I do struggle with the creations, namely what flappeters actually look like, and how that word might be spelt. It's surprising Ian is not more popular among fantasy fans, he has a very detailed world.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Suvi Tartia

    I have not read any of Irvine's previous novels, but the world he presented in The Fate of the Fallen felt- for the most part - convincing. Sadly, the same cannot be said of the characters and the plot. I generally dislike giving up on a book, so I struggled on and read the entire novel, but I am not sure if it was worth it.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Pat Austin

    I listened to the audio book of this and I thought that all the description got in the way of the plot. Several things happened during the book that I just kept thinking "Get on with it - how is this furthering the plot???" Maybe all would be revealed in a subsequent book but somehow I don't think I'll be reading or listening to the next book in the series.

  15. 5 out of 5

    JT Mickey

    The book was hard to follow at times, the characters confusing at times and the ending a let down after 606 pages. However, this was the first book I have read of Irvine's and I will be finishing this series to see what happens next.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Ruth Harwood

    Onto part two with anticipation, really enjoyed this. A little verbose at times, but not in any story-detracting way!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Jess

    An exciting read the whole way through, with new characters and old.

  18. 4 out of 5

    StevenD

    Enjoyed this book especially the second half ended up staying up late to finish it without realising.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ceri Sambrook

    Good, imaginative writing, but I find the relentless misery in his style tough to endure at time. Let good people be happy once in a while...

  20. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    So I will admit this review and my opinion is a little strange but bear with me. I absolutely loved this book. It had all the elements of a fantasy book that I absolutely love, rich story, characters you can fall in love with an amazing world and an epic cliff hanger! When I went to buy the next in the series I was genuinely surprised to find it was actually the 9th book of a huge saga! I quickly bought the other 10 books and set out to read it from book one, only to be thoroughly disappointed wit So I will admit this review and my opinion is a little strange but bear with me. I absolutely loved this book. It had all the elements of a fantasy book that I absolutely love, rich story, characters you can fall in love with an amazing world and an epic cliff hanger! When I went to buy the next in the series I was genuinely surprised to find it was actually the 9th book of a huge saga! I quickly bought the other 10 books and set out to read it from book one, only to be thoroughly disappointed with the others, I will be giving them a second chance as sometimes I find if you aren't in the mood for a certain type of book you will fail to find it fantastic even if its the best thing ever written. I also only got up to book 4, so perhaps it was this particular set (as its split in to three sets) that I didn't like. We will have to see. That being said, this book was truly TRULY a gripping tale. The beginning is a little hard to follow but following my revelation that I had actually missed out on 8 previous books that makes sense. I will review the others in due course. But as a stand alone book this receives a 5 star rating!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Maya

    I picked up this book because, well, I've read the rest of them and I can't very well stop now. I didn't enjoy the Well of Echoes as much as the Tale of the Mirror and wasn't sure how well this one would measure up. Irvine's books are characterised by the hardship the protagonists endure. They are met by challenge after challenge, nothing falls easily into their laps and they work for their rewards - and this is part of their charm. Its a refreshing take on fantasy. However, my first impressions I picked up this book because, well, I've read the rest of them and I can't very well stop now. I didn't enjoy the Well of Echoes as much as the Tale of the Mirror and wasn't sure how well this one would measure up. Irvine's books are characterised by the hardship the protagonists endure. They are met by challenge after challenge, nothing falls easily into their laps and they work for their rewards - and this is part of their charm. Its a refreshing take on fantasy. However, my first impressions of this series is the author is taking this a step too far. Nothing goes right - in fact, it goes from bad to worse to even worse, and the main character, poor Maelys, gets a pretty tough run of it. Beyond the grit and realism Irvine obviously aims for, in this book it becomes more a form of torture for his characters. At least in my eyes. That being said, the book is still an enjoyable fantasy romp with familiar characters mixed with new ones. Maelys is far less irritating than Tiaan, the adventure is as wild as ever and the geography and setting is, as always, stunning.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Alex Boon

    Ian Irvine is one of the most frustrating authors I have read. He writes utterly unlikeable characters (with a couple of exceptions) and then makes them seem like idiots by supplying the reader with the obvious but ensuring that the characters fail to see it. Along with the irritant "he, Nish," and in this book "the zealot" as a singular description of a character, the narrative becomes increasingly annoying. In earlier books, Irvine " tells" rather than "shows" but this one takes it to a new le Ian Irvine is one of the most frustrating authors I have read. He writes utterly unlikeable characters (with a couple of exceptions) and then makes them seem like idiots by supplying the reader with the obvious but ensuring that the characters fail to see it. Along with the irritant "he, Nish," and in this book "the zealot" as a singular description of a character, the narrative becomes increasingly annoying. In earlier books, Irvine " tells" rather than "shows" but this one takes it to a new level of bad writing, especially in one scene where half the plot is revealed through one character eavesdropping on two others. Poor. On the other hand, I still don't want to stop reading and that's what's frustrating about these books. As annoying as the narrative is, it's still a good story and you still finish wanting to know what happens next and so I suppose I'm stuck with the "he, Nish," for a few more. Sigh.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Alec

    Only a little way in, but liking it so far... ... some days later ... Ok, I seem to be having a run of books that are a real mixture of both promise and poor realisation. On balance, a reasonable story that moves along at a good pace. Perhaps I suffer from lack of reading the previous 8 books in the series. There are several oblique back-references to previous battles undertaken by some of the characters and I think I certainly would need more of the background to understand why one of the main Only a little way in, but liking it so far... ... some days later ... Ok, I seem to be having a run of books that are a real mixture of both promise and poor realisation. On balance, a reasonable story that moves along at a good pace. Perhaps I suffer from lack of reading the previous 8 books in the series. There are several oblique back-references to previous battles undertaken by some of the characters and I think I certainly would need more of the background to understand why one of the main protags is how they are (I feel I just wanted to give one in particular a boot up the rear end!) - but I do applaud the author for not revisiting the previous books at length as some others feel they need to.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    All finished, and rather felt let down by this one. It's some time since I read Irvine's preceeding series, and I felt that this volume assumed too much familiarity with what went before. That said, it also didn't seem to do much in the way of setting up the next book in the sequence which I plan to start soon. Irvine does do a good job of maintaining his own style of writing with some quite gruesome descriptions of painful events, and isn't aimed at younger readers! I am still looking forward to All finished, and rather felt let down by this one. It's some time since I read Irvine's preceeding series, and I felt that this volume assumed too much familiarity with what went before. That said, it also didn't seem to do much in the way of setting up the next book in the sequence which I plan to start soon. Irvine does do a good job of maintaining his own style of writing with some quite gruesome descriptions of painful events, and isn't aimed at younger readers! I am still looking forward to reading the next in sequence however as this one did do enough to hook me in!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kirsty

    I liked this book it is a good fantasy adventure book, unfortunetely having recently read the game of thrones this book doesnt quite match up to standards and the way it leaves the ending was frankly annoying having said that i do need to read the rest of the seris, in order to find out what happens to the characthers who are well written. The only thing i would say is don't read this book unless you are willing to put a lot of time and effort into it and have the curse on the choosen to hand to I liked this book it is a good fantasy adventure book, unfortunetely having recently read the game of thrones this book doesnt quite match up to standards and the way it leaves the ending was frankly annoying having said that i do need to read the rest of the seris, in order to find out what happens to the characthers who are well written. The only thing i would say is don't read this book unless you are willing to put a lot of time and effort into it and have the curse on the choosen to hand to pick up straight after ;)

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ann

    I could not finish this book! The reason why I gave this book 3 stars is because the plot is well written, however the characters are all a bunch of idiots who have no idea what they're doing I cannot even begin to tell you how annoying they are! The only reason why I started reading this book is because I have been other works by the author and really enjoyed them. Come to realize this book is really bad and I do not recommend this book for anyone however, I do recommend way between the worlds I could not finish this book! The reason why I gave this book 3 stars is because the plot is well written, however the characters are all a bunch of idiots who have no idea what they're doing I cannot even begin to tell you how annoying they are! The only reason why I started reading this book is because I have been other works by the author and really enjoyed them. Come to realize this book is really bad and I do not recommend this book for anyone however, I do recommend way between the worlds and the tainted realm series. Those are really good do not waste your time with this one

  27. 4 out of 5

    Skyemberr

    I very much enjoyed this book, even with the cliff hanger ending. The thing about this series that is interesting to me is that the first series had almost zero governance and limited magical ability. It was more pure fantasy. From then on the books started to include technology and psi in varying rates, and reflected change in governance in the world, with all of the people evolving in crisis. I can hardly wait to see how Santhenar ends.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mateen Ar

    An excellent adventure fantasy. I appreciate the excellent setting, great imagination involved and absurdly strong atmosphere. There could however have been better characters throughout the story, and better detail recognition. The character development is fine but could be better. Overall I enjoy the story but not the characters and I look forward to the adventures. There is a strong hint of despair in the story that would be unfair to overlook.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Anne

    After Reading The Well of Echoes still found it hard to get in to this follow on series and was halfway through before I began to really get into the book. Ian Irvine is not the easiest author to read but his charactors are really well written and soon found I wanted to find out what would happen to them and by the end of the book couldn't wait to read the second in this series

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    This was the first book i have read of Ian Irvine's and i am very impressed. The Fate of the Fallen is the first book in the trilogy and i cannot wait to read the other two. I wont say anything about the story except to say that the characters develop well during this book and there are some great characters in this story, including the baddies!! Brilliant book. Well worth reading.

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