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Gardens of the Moon: The Malazan Book of the Fallen, Book 1 | [Steven Erikson]

Gardens of the Moon: The Malazan Book of the Fallen, Book 1

The Malazan Empire simmers with discontent, bled dry by interminable warfare, bitter infighting, and bloody confrontations with ancient and implacable sorcerers. Even the imperial legions, long inured to the bloodshed, yearn for some respite. Yet Empress Laseen’s rule remains absolute, enforced by her dreaded Claw assassins. For Sergeant Whiskeyjack and his squad of Bridgeburners, and for Tattersail, their lone surviving mage, the aftermath of the siege of Pale should have been a time to mourn the many dead. But Darujhistan, last of the Free Cities, yet holds out.
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Publisher's Summary

The Malazan Empire simmers with discontent, bled dry by interminable warfare, bitter infighting, and bloody confrontations with ancient and implacable sorcerers. Even the imperial legions, long inured to the bloodshed, yearn for some respite. Yet Empress Laseen’s rule remains absolute, enforced by her dreaded Claw assassins. For Sergeant Whiskeyjack and his squad of Bridgeburners, and for Tattersail, their lone surviving mage, the aftermath of the siege of Pale should have been a time to mourn the many dead. But Darujhistan, last of the Free Cities, yet holds out. It is to this ancient citadel that Laseen turns her predatory gaze.

However, the Empire is not alone in this great game. Sinister, shadowbound forces are gathering as the gods themselves prepare to play their hand....

Conceived and written on a panoramic scale, Gardens of the Moon is epic fantasy of the highest order - an enthralling adventure by an outstanding voice.

©1999 Steven Erikson (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"I stand slack-jawed in awe of The Malazan Book of the Fallen. This masterwork of imagination may be the high-water mark of epic fantasy. This marathon of ambition has a depth and breadth and sense of vast reaches of inimical time unlike anything else available today. The Black Company, Zelazny’s Amber, Vance’s Dying Earth, and other mighty drumbeats are but foreshadowings of this dark dragon’s hoard." (Glen Cook)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (1553 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Overall
3.7 (1393 )
5 star
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2 star
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Story
4.0 (1384 )
5 star
 (597)
4 star
 (405)
3 star
 (210)
2 star
 (79)
1 star
 (93)
Performance
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  •  
    Jeremy S. Wanamaker Dallas, TX 09-08-14
    Jeremy S. Wanamaker Dallas, TX 09-08-14 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    245
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "couldn't "get" it"
    What disappointed you about Gardens of the Moon?

    As stated by other reviewers, this is a complex book. Even after starting over several times and skipping back, I never felt like I knew who was who, what they were trying to accomplish, so I finally lost interest... moving on to a new book without finishing the first part. Yes, I tend to do busy work while listening, and always have, but this is the first book I felt like I just couldn't care enough to keep trying.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Steven Erikson again?

    Probably not


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Ralph Lister?

    Don't know that a change in narrator would make a difference.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    I don't know that I found any.


    Any additional comments?

    Pay attention to what others say, unless you plan to take notes, or intend to reference a print version, you might find yourself wondering if you entered a new chapter, every few minutes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cheri 09-02-14
    Cheri 09-02-14 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    32
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    102
    36
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
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    Performance
    Story
    "I WANTED TO LIKE THIS BOOK..."

    but, guess i'm not smart enough to keep all the 'who, what, where, and why's' in order.
    it's been at least 5 days and i just got to the 2nd part last night. all that rewinding to try to pick up and put together the story...and i still don't know what's going on.
    a book shouldn't be so difficult to follow.
    the narrator was fine, but even with that, the book was too convoluted for me to connect with, try as i might...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    surabhi 08-03-14
    surabhi 08-03-14 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "brilliant book with a fantastic narrative style"
    What did you love best about Gardens of the Moon?

    The stylish narrative keeps you hooked. Although the book is intense reading with hundreds of characters and parallel story lines , individual characters are perfectly sketched to give you a real sense of the story as a whole.


    What does Ralph Lister bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Ralph Lister 's reading style actually helped me identify the many different characters and made what might otherwise have been an arduous audio book experience, extremely enjoyable.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gavin Haynes 08-01-14 Member Since 2014

    Student: part time, accountant: full time, listener: all times.

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Complicated but Enjoyable Ride"
    What made the experience of listening to Gardens of the Moon the most enjoyable?

    The wealth of characters, all of which had amazing voices from Lister, made this a very fun listen.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I enjoyed a lot of slight details the author threw in, my favorite example is a bit of a spoiler, but Erikson definitely knows how to link the various stories occurring in the book.


    Which character – as performed by Ralph Lister – was your favorite?

    Kruppe is the best for sure, he's more or less that one crazy friend we all have, really fun to listen to.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Tattersail's fate is fairly emotional, don't want to spoil anything though!


    Any additional comments?

    It will take you some time to get into (like most Fantasy/Sci-Fi) but if you can stick with it, you'll enjoy yourself immensely.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rese Cotton 07-27-14
    Rese Cotton 07-27-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    5
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Always wonderful!"

    As always, I was immediately swept away, reveling in the well-developed plot and fascinating characters. It's great to revisit old 'friends' and meet new ones. Thanks for the hours of enjoyment.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    christopher 07-10-14
    christopher 07-10-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    30
    7
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Slow story...just couldn't get into it"
    Would you try another book from Steven Erikson and/or Ralph Lister?

    For Ralph Lister, absolutely, he's did a great job with a story that was just hard to follow. As far as Erikson...I'm not sure, it would depend on the reviews, this story which I had very high hopes for turned out to just not quite be for me.


    What was most disappointing about Steven Erikson’s story?

    I felt like I never quite really connected to the characters until the last 4 or 5 hours of the audiobook. I kept going in hopes that I would get more invested in the story, but it just felt shallow...I felt left out as the reader, like I wasn't pulled in and personally invested in the story.


    What does Ralph Lister bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He did a great job narrating the story, he gave awesome inflection and emotion when the story begged for it. It was a tough read for him though...the story wasn't deep enough to pull the reader in, I feel like he did the best he could with what he had.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    I was disappointed. I really wanted to like this series, I just didn't feel like I was able to connect with the characters, they were never humanized.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joshua 07-07-14
    Joshua 07-07-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    23
    6
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    0
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    "A truly epic beginning to a truly epic series"
    What made the experience of listening to Gardens of the Moon the most enjoyable?

    This series has the grit of Glen Cook, the intrigue of Game of Thrones (GRRM), and a sense of loss as profound as that of a Memory of Light (Robert Jorden/Brandon Sanderson). This book can be a bit heavy for some because the introduction to the world is not the best. However, if you can get past the beginning, you will find a truly memorable series with some of the saddest moments of a book series.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Gardens of the Moon?

    The fatalism of the soldiers. The betrayal at pale.


    Have you listened to any of Ralph Lister’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Overall, Ralph is a great narrator. I've heard a few as I have a large collection of audiobooks in my library. Ralph is definitely one of the better narrators.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Fatalism. Hope. Can one squad of soldiers, against the world, save the very world they are fighting against?


    Any additional comments?

    Booya. Actually though, you'll be doing yourself a huge disservice if you pass up this series. I've found my eyes wet when reading only a few books; Old Yeller, Where the Red Fern Grows, Memories of Light, Book 15 of the Dresden Files, and this series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary 06-24-14
    Mary 06-24-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    116
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Tried to listen. A book shouldn't be such work"
    Has Gardens of the Moon turned you off from other books in this genre?

    I will not attempt to read any more books in this series.


    How could the performance have been better?

    A book should flow easily. After listening to chapters 1-8 twice, I decided that was enough.


    What character would you cut from Gardens of the Moon?

    NA


    Any additional comments?

    I truly tried but absolutely could not get into this book. I love a good syfi. This book was an unpleasant effort.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark United States 06-18-14
    Mark United States 06-18-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    23
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    18
    8
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    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Painfully confusing"
    What would have made Gardens of the Moon better?

    Eliminate the too frequent jumps from character to character without a clear break point. Very easy to get lost - to the point of annoyance.


    What was most disappointing about Steven Erikson’s story?

    So hard to track.


    What about Ralph Lister’s performance did you like?

    He did a decent job


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Meh...could not finish it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shawn 06-03-14
    Shawn 06-03-14 Member Since 2013
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "No Clue What is going on 3 times through"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I would be hard pressed to recommend these books. I feel like even though I am very used to fantasy novels and writers this series requires you to essentially listen and take notes.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Paran I think I mean god know who all the characters are and half of them have similar names. I'm not even sure I know what is going on.


    Any additional comments?

    Hire an editor for your next book

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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