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Book coverReaper's Gale, the seventh book in Steven Erikson's series called The Malazan Book of the Fallen made me feel all kinds of things. There was boredom a lot of times, there was uncomprehension in others, there were moments when tears flowed from my eyes as well as great moments of tension. At the end of it, I feel unqualified to actually discuss it. It is still a great book, it ends with a convergence of paths, as all the others have, but it somehow felt different from the previous six books.

I believe that Erikson fell into a well known writer trap. He was so caught in his own world, that he forgot most readers are not, and cannot be unless with great effort. Therefore the characters got out of control. They did things as they pleased, regardless of the reader's need. That is why I think this book was weak compared to the others.

The plot is too complex to expand here. Enough said that Icarium, Karsa Orlong, Quick Ben, Mael, The Errant, Fiddler and Hedge, Bottle and Beak, The Adjunct and Lostara Yil and all the Bonehunters, they all meet in Letheras. Even after reading the book you don't get to know why all that buildup was for, why in the last 50 pages all the characters acted so strangely, where Karsa and Icarium went and, most of all, why did a woman Seguleh have such a small part! The dragons (all of them) are beaten senseless, the Sengars have the worst of luck and the t'Lann Imass are just peripheral characters.

As did the sixth book, but at a larger scale, more avenues are opened than closed. I can barely wait reading the eight book, but I feel cheated a bit. Hope lives on, though :)


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