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Assail

Written by: Ian C. Esslemont
Narrated by: John Banks
Length: 22 hrs and 46 mins
5 out of 5 stars (9 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

This follow-up to Ian C. Esslemont's Blood and Bone is sure to delight Malazan fans.

Tens of thousands of years of ice is melting, and the land of Assail, long a byword for menace and inaccessibility, is at last yielding its secrets. Tales of gold discovered in the region's north circulate in every waterfront dive and sailor's tavern, and now countless adventurers and fortune-seekers have set sail in search of riches. All these adventures have to guide them are legends and garbled tales of the dangers that lie in wait - hostile coasts, fields of ice, impassable barriers and strange, terrifying creatures. But all accounts concur that the people of the north meet all trespassers with the sword. And beyond are rumored to lurk Elder monsters out of history's very beginnings.

Into this turmoil ventures the mercenary company, the Crimson Guard. Not drawn by contract, but by the promise of answers: answers to mysteries that Shimmer, second in command, wonders should even be sought. Arriving also, part of an uneasy alliance of Malazan fortune-hunters and Letherii soldiery, comes the bard Fisher kel Tath. And with him is a Tiste Andii who was found washed ashore and who cannot remember his past life, yet who commands far more power than he really should. Also venturing north is said to be a mighty champion, a man who once fought for the Malazans, the bearer of a sword that slays gods: Whiteblade.

And lastly, far to the south, a woman guards the shore, awaiting both her allies and her enemies. Silverfox, newly incarnated Summoner of the undying army of the T'lan Imass, will do anything to stop the renewal of an ages-old crusade that could lay waste to the entire continent and beyond.

Casting light on mysteries spanning the Malazan Empire, and offering a glimpse of the storied and epic history that shaped it, Assail is the final chapter in the epic story of the Empire of Malaz.

©2014 Ian Cameron Esslemont (P)2017 Random House Audiobooks

What members say

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Good Fantasy Novel

Enjoyed this one. Esselmont has matured as a writer. More literary effort in this novel. Uses a few plot and character techniques he hasn't before. A Shyamalan twist on this story. Reader is good

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • BJ
  • 2017-10-23

Welcome ending

Esslemont is in no way the equal of the early Erickson. And he's slavish to the model of lots of characters converging on some, usually, apotheosis all in the last chapter. Early Erickson was good, but he became almost intolerable at the end with his handling of hundreds and hundreds of characters and dozens of storylines, too many of which were simply dropped. Esslemont is no improvement. Seems that since Robert Jordan everyone tries to deal with his own lack of ability to develop characters by simply introducing more of them. So many dropped storylines. And too many "clever" questions left unanswered. Poor writing ultimately..

As to the reader, wow. He's ok, but very much, just ok. He pronounces "cadre" as "carter", Kaminsod as "Kasminod" and voices nearly every single woman as a crone and every single mage as an old man. It's bad.

I only decided to finish this to just get through the story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Perpetual Notion
  • 2019-09-23

Mediocre writing, horrible narration.

This dialog in this book is nearly impossible to follow since the writing is abrupt and all the characters sound exactly the same.

This is Banks' worst performance to date by a large margin, which is really saying something because his performances are usually tolerable at best.

I will NEVER listen to another book narrated by John Banks, although I may give Esslemont another chance.

I've finished more than 60 books on Audibe and this is the first time I've ever requested a refund.

This is a sad and disappointing conclusion to a once great series. I genuinely wish I skipped this book and ended on a high note.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Duke Freed
  • 2019-05-01

Loose ends tied up.

I am happy that so many loose ends were tied up here. At the end all I want to do is find someone else to share my experiences in this book with. I'm very happy as to how it ended

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • JonnyFive
  • 2018-10-29

perfect

Masterful performance of a great novel.
many of the questions of the series have been answered but i believe the best has yet to come

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Steven Deshane Summers
  • 2018-10-25

Gods I love this series

Such a good series. I can't wait till he finishes the path of ascendancy series...

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Lycan
  • 2018-09-06

Ice is melting and Fire is awakening

Assail is becoming accessible to outlanders. When a handful of the most legendary champions face an army on all sides - what do you think happens? Another bad ass chapter of the Malazan world. Thanks C. unlike any of the other beloved characters in all the novels we get to see a slave who becomes a reqruit in the CG who stands up for a powerful ascendant who is granted a sword like no other who befriends a Thelaki and enters under the protection of the children of the earth who becomes Adjunct to Greymane who...THATS all you are getting from me read the book.
It is great to see a character start from nothing and becomes one of those legends everyone hears about. Now Im off to Kharkanas - Leoman's Balls , Finally. ☮️

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  • Michael S Havener
  • 2018-07-12

Well Done

Awesome book, so many details are tied up from the whole series! it was great!

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  • david a. pollard
  • 2017-01-10

Sad the story is at an end.

Or is it? I hope not, because I simply love the worlds created by these two AMAZING writers.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful