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Shadow Games (The Chronicles of the Black Company #4)

4.07  ·  Rating Details ·  6,509 Ratings  ·  133 Reviews
After the devastating battle at the Tower of Charm, Croaker leads the greatly diminished Black Company south, in search of the lost Annals. The Annals will be returned to Khatovar, eight thousand miles away, a city that may exists only in legend...the origin of the first Free Companies.

Every step of the way the Company is hounded by shadowy figured and carrion-eating crows
...more
Mass Market Paperback, 311 pages
Published June 15th 1989 by Tor Fantasy
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Evgeny
Feb 22, 2016 Evgeny rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
As anybody who made it to this point knows after the events in The White Rose the Black Company split. The fate of its members left behind is described in The Silver Spike. This book starts the plot arc about the people who decided to go with its analyst Croaker to the place of the Company's origin, faraway and mysterious Khatovar. The seven survivors (yes, there were only seven people left in the beginning of the book) had no clue that they end up right in the middle of power play of some peopl ...more
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
Buddy read with the ever awesome BBB mercenaries

Welcome to yet another fascinating Why Did I, Why Didn't I Non-Review (WDIWDINR)! Because I don't have the time to write one of those It's Longer Than The Book Itself Non-Reviews (ILTTBINR) that you love so much! That's right, my Little Barnacles! Time for you to be glad and rejoice again! We're about to embark on a The Crap Is About To Get Cut Non-Review (TCIATOGCNR)!



Why did I almost DNF this book?

*gasps*

YES, my name is Sarah and I have a sha
...more
Robin (Bridge Four)
3.5 My Fair Lady Stars

I love being back with Croaker, One –Eye, Goblin and the former Lady, still called Lady but she is much diminished in power since The White Rose, I’m sure that will be rectified at some point though.

Things I like about this Series:

ͼ Everything is a little clipped. Since it is told like the annals of an army company things like scenery, excessive dialogue and descriptions are clipped. Therefore it is a short read with most of the meat of the story but not a lot of extras

ͽ Cr
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Markus
Nov 19, 2015 Markus rated it really liked it
The heart is stilled but the corpse stumbles on. The Company is dead in fact but not in name.
And we, O merciless gods, stand witness to the power of names.


After decades of fighting in the dark empire of the north, the huge and devastating battle at the Tower of Charm, and the awakening of an ancient evil in the Barrowland, the Black Company turns south in a quest to find its mysterious origins and the long lost city of Khatovar.

A couple of the most interesting characters are absent in this novel
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Choko
Feb 19, 2016 Choko rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, fantasy-grim
*** 4.44 ***

A buddy read with my fellow mercenaries in the BB&B company.


I can honestly say, I missed The Black Company terribly, I just didn't realized that until I started reading the forth installment in the series. Am I glad to be back on the road with my BC mercs:):):)

The Black Company is on the road to the South, trying to get beck to their legendary origins. It does not matter that at the beginning of the journey they are only 7, and that is including the now diminished Lady. Although
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Athena Shardbearer
Actual Rating 3.5

GAH!!!! Glen Cook, what a cliff hanger.

It wasn't as great as the last three, more of the slow years. It did drag in places, loved the Lady and Croakers relationship but I have questions...and I need answers!!!
Eilonwy
Feb 29, 2016 Eilonwy rated it really liked it

I am no closer to coming up with a review than I was when I closed the covers!
Gavin
Jun 07, 2014 Gavin rated it liked it
Shelves: historical
Shadow Games is the fourth book in The Black Company series. It's not quite as strong as the books from the original trilogy, but it's a worthwhile entry into the series.

This is the tale of The Black Company's attempts to return their vaunted annals to Khatovar, the Company's place of origin. Of course the path to Khatovar is fraught with mishaps!

I liked the story and Lady was a good addition to the team. Plenty of other familiar faces pop up as well. Croaker remains an interesting character.
...more
Milda Page Runner
May 22, 2015 Milda Page Runner rated it liked it
Shelves: romance, dark-fantasy
3.5 stars
Good but not as good as 2 previous books.
The pacing was a bit uneven. As Black Company travels South to mysterious Khatovar we have some slow moments especially in the first half of the book. Once they reach exotic southern towns with unpronounceable names action picks up. Mysterious and menacing enemies and no less mysterious allies with questionable motives, intrigue of Company's own past and what lies over the edge of the map, fights with the Company's signature magic and trickery a
...more
Sumant
Sep 05, 2014 Sumant rated it liked it
This book was some what let down for me as it did not live up to the standards set by first three books in the series, this book basically consists of journey of company back to Khatovar where they are going to place the annals of the company.More than 25% of book consisted of traveling different regions up to Beryl, where everything actually began in the first book.I forgot to mention in my last review but got to give credit to narrator of books Mark Vietor so far he has done an awesome job and ...more
Skaistė
May 25, 2015 Skaistė rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kad jau skaičiau, tai pagalvojau, perskaitysiu iki galo, įdomu, kaip baigsis, ką čia tas vidurnaktis... :) Pabaiga tai tokia, kad vos ne iš karto norisi imti kitą knygą ir skaityti toliau. Nė viena iš kitų knygų pabaigų nebuvo tokia "cliffhanger". Nors kai kurie dalykai paaiškėjo, bet atsirado vietoj jų daugybė naujų, o dar daug kas liko neaišku. O šiaip įdomu buvo Gvardijos kelionė ir jos pokyčiai tos kelionės eigoje. Paslapčių ir intrigų kaip ir visad netrūko.

Paprastai kai skaitau knygas, ir
...more
Caro M.
I'm confused and pissed!
Benjamin Thomas
May 27, 2016 Benjamin Thomas rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy-dark
The fourth book in The Black Company series is also the beginning of a new dualogy, often referred to as “The Books of the South”. After the high impact events in book # 3, The White Rose, the remaining bits of the Black Company (down to only seven people now) decide to make their way south, to locate the lost historical annals of their Company and return them to Khatovar, the Company's place of origin.

This novel is sort of a “journey” novel, as we get to experience the Company’s adventures duri
...more
Chichipio
Nov 06, 2011 Chichipio rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
I started this one feeling a little tired of the Black Company, but it took only a few paragraphs to remind me why I enjoy this world so much.

It's never easy continuing a series after a successful trilogy, and I think the fourth—mostly unrelated—book shows that. This one, with most of the old timers back, and Croaker in the role of narrator, manages to be a nice change of direction for the series. And after that ending I can't wait to know what happens next.
Aida
Jun 10, 2016 Aida rated it it was amazing
این چه طرز تموم شدنه؟ اون بدبختا چی شدن؟ چرا نویسنده همه رو ول کرد وسط هوا و زمین؟ :|

واقعا چرا؟ چرا؟

زبانم قاصره از این همه پلشتی گلن کوک :|
Adara
Aug 25, 2016 Adara rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Grimdark-fantasy lovers
Shelves: fantasy, grimdark
I guess each of us, at some time, finds one person with whom we are compelled toward absolute honesty, one person whose good opinion of us becomes a substitute for the broader opinion of the world. And that opinion becomes more important than all our sneaky, sleazy schemes of greed, lust, self-aggrandizement, whatever we are up to while lying the world into believing we are just plain nice folks. I was her truth object, and she was mine.


The gang are down to seven members with Croaker at the he
...more
Fantasy Book Addict
Jul 19, 2014 Fantasy Book Addict rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Chronicles of the Black Company was one of the best fantasy novels I have read in a long time. I was excited to begin the next set of the Black Company novels in Books of the South. Even though I read the omnibus edition I will have to post these books separately because I have much to say.

According to Goodreads, Shadow Games is apparently the fifth installment of the Chronicles of the Black Company. It is preceded by The Silver Spike. However, in the Omnibus edition, Shadow Games comes first, s
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L'ours inculte
May 25, 2016 L'ours inculte rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
La Compagnie Noire n’est plus, ou presque. Après le carnage des Livres du nord (attention ça va sûrement spoiler les tomes précédents, obviously) ils ne sont plus que sept sous le commandement d’un Toubib qui se serait bien passé de la nouvelle responsabilité. Il est temps pour eux de partir, de revenir aux origines de la Compagnie, à Khatovar, cap au sud.

C’est donc une mini-Compagnie qui prend la route. Otto, Hagop, Madame, Murgen, Toubib et les inénarrables sorciers Gobelin et Qu’un œil font r
...more
Nenad Pavlović
Dec 02, 2015 Nenad Pavlović rated it liked it
A long travel that leads only to the next part of the series, new foes that are just the shadows of the old, but still pretty entertaining at moments.
Robertb
Dec 12, 2009 Robertb rated it liked it
Shelves: dark-fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kirt
Jan 17, 2008 Kirt rated it liked it
We return to our familiar narrator, Croaker, as he leads the Company south, back into the history of the Company, trying to find its place of origin. It's not bad, tying up some more loose ends, getting a better view of the world the Black Company lives in, and introducing some new dangers for the Company to deal with, most of which are tied up with the troubles of a pacifist city and militaristic Shadowmasters to the south, powerful sorcerers that command disturbing undead shadows.

My biggest co
...more
Killian Weber
May 22, 2014 Killian Weber rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Elihú
Jul 17, 2016 Elihú rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ciertamente recuperar a personajes como Matasanos, la Dama, Goblin y Un Ojo es todo un aporte a este libro, que inicia los llamados Libros del Sur. Si bien yo defendí el Clavo de Plata, Juegos de Sombras lo supera por mucho.

Las estrategias militares y las batallas finales del libro son una gozada. Ya acostumbrado en este punto al estilo directo y sin rodeos de Cook, la narración de los combates se sienten muy bien plasmados. Cook escribe lo que debe, sin florituras ni magnamidades. Además la evo
...more
Natalie
Nov 07, 2015 Natalie rated it it was amazing
Cliffhanger!
Dave H
Nov 12, 2014 Dave H rated it really liked it
This installment of the Chronicles of the Black Company follows the rebuilding of the company as they head south to return the Annals to Khatovar. The tale jumps around, in typical fashion, between points of view of the antagonist and protagonist. Only in this case things are a bit more obfuscated for the big reveals later. It makes the book a little hard to follow.

The new characters comes fast and often in this book, as Croaker and the remaining "old guys" add members 2-3 at a time in each cit
...more
Albert Martínez
Aug 24, 2016 Albert Martínez rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ídolo Matasanos. Sigo con el siguiente.
Ronny
May 28, 2013 Ronny rated it really liked it
I read this book 15 years ago, and while I remember loving every part of the series (except the first few chapters of the first book), I never did manage to find this book in a non-omnibus edition until I found it in a used bookstore now.

Kip
Mar 15, 2014 Kip rated it liked it
Hmm, started out OK, but it appears he's recycling characters from the first three books. Soulcatcher, Howler, many of the Taken are back just with new names. Lady getting her power back? Really? Croaker not really dead? Sigh.

I'll give the first book in the next set a read only because it's available on Paperbackswap.com. Gonna have to grab me to continue with the Black Company...

* Couldn't finish
** I had nothing else to do
*** Passed the time, would be **** for genre / author fans
**** Everyone c
...more
Charles
Jul 28, 2010 Charles rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
I thought the Books of the south tended to revitalize the series and I liked them well.
Joshua Castleman
May 02, 2016 Joshua Castleman rated it really liked it
Another excellent entry to the Black Company series. This book starts the beloved group of mercenaries heading into a completely different part of the world. I thought the world was pretty big before this, but in this book, the world gets massively larger. I really enjoy the detail too of the Company traveling so far across the world that they don't even know any of the languages and have to get translators. That subtle use of language helps the new areas feel very distant and foreign.

The trave
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Glen Cook was born in New York City, lived in southern Indiana as a small child, then grew up in Northern California. After high school he served in the U.S. Navy and attended the University of Missouri. He worked for General Motors for 33 years, retiring some years ago. He started writing short stories in 7th grade, had several published in a high school literary magazine. He began writing with m ...more
More about Glen Cook...

Other Books in the Series

The Chronicles of the Black Company (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • The Black Company (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #1)
  • Shadows Linger (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #2)
  • The White Rose (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #3)
  • Dreams of Steel (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #5)
  • Bleak Seasons (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #6)
  • She is the Darkness (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #7)
  • Water Sleeps (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #8)
  • Soldiers Live (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #9)
  • A Pitiless Rain (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #10)
  • Port of Shadows (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #11)

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“Every ounce of my cynicism is supported by historical precedent.” 225 likes
“I guess each of us, at some time, finds one person with whom we are compelled towards absolute honesty, one person whose good opinion of us becomes a substitute for the broader opinion of the world. And that opinion becomes more important than all our sneaky, sleazy schemes of greed, lust, self-aggrandizement, whatever we are up to while lying the world into believing we are just plain nice folks.” 12 likes
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