I wanted to jump in at the third book but after a few chapters I quickly learned the author did not help new comers. No history told or explanations so I was completely lost. I don't even know what the characters are!
I'm disappointed. Some of the books I've read helped bring the reader up to speed. I'm not sure I want to start at book one. Do I need to take notes just to understand it.
This is an incredibly complex but impressive story and world that Erikson crafts. If given the option, I'd recommend reading the book prior to listening to the audiobook version - as excellent as Ralph Lister's performance is, the book is at times incredibly are to follow without and really deserving of a focused read. Also, if you don't understand something, Erikson has a habit of explaining this subtly later on in the story, so sometimes you have to just push through not knowing what's happening at that particular moment.
This was my favorite of the first three books of the series so far. Having Paran, Whiskeyjack, Quick Ben, and many other familiar faces back in the center of the story is very enjoyable, as they are deep and multifaceted characters. Erikson also does a great job writing combat scenes, which many authors struggle with.
I won't reinvent the wheel with this review. This series is great. Just, don't expect it to be a whirlwind fast paced read like the Mistborn books - the Malazan books are just as exciting, fascinating, and immersive, albeit in an entirely different way. They're 100% worth the effort and focus.
After making it through Deadhouse Gates, and that gut wrenching ending of the Chain of Dogs, Erickson kicks me in the feels yet again with this one. Well done, off to House of Chains!
This...the apex of storytelling and weaving of plots. Worth every minute. I've cried. I've laughed. I've cheer. I've roared. I've done all these things in response to this epic tale.
I am baffled that one human could create such a monstrously huge and complex work. I am delightfully lost within it... but so intrigued that I am determined to find my way. The narration is beyond professional, an absolute talent.... I wait for certain characters simply for the sound of them. All other epic fantasy is merely the base for this mountain.