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Ghost King (Stones of Power #1)

3.93  ·  Rating Details ·  2,801 Ratings  ·  67 Reviews
Chaos and terror stalked the realm. The king had been slain by traitors, and the sword of power had been lost beyond the Circle of Mist. Armies of Saxons, Angles, Jutes, and Brigantes cut a gory swath across the land, led by puppets of the ruthless Witch Queen--whose minions included dark, bloodthirsty creatures and a savage, undead warrior.
All hope lay with young Thuro--i
ebook, 304 pages
Published June 8th 2011 by Del Rey (first published 1988)
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(showing 1-30)
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Ahmad Sharabiani
Ghost King (Stones of Power #1), David Gemmell
عنوان: مجموعه سنگهای قدرت کتاب اول : شبح شاه ؛ نویسنده: دیوید گمل؛ تهران، کتابسرای تندیس؛ 1386؛ در 319 ص؛ شابک: 9789648944327؛
ساکسون ها، آنجل ها، جوت ها، و اعضای قبیله ی بریگانت همدست میشوند تا بریتانیا را نابود کنند، در مقابل آنها پسری ضعیف ایستاده و جنگجوئی پیر، یادم مانده در جایی از کتاب نوشته بود: انسان مجموعه ی حوادثی ست که برایش اتفاق میافتد
Okay, generally I find Gemmell’s books to be fairly fun; standard fantasy, with enough interesting characters, twists or references to keep me interested. And you’d think this one would be especially so, since it’s basically about King Arthur (albeit as a young boy). Maybe it’s the fact that this was one of the earliest of Gemmell’s books (as far as I can tell from publication dates), but it really, really didn’t work for me. There was that same moreishness about it in some ways, but I kept gett ...more
Daniel Ionson
So I am a diehard Gemmell fan. But there's a problem with these 2 books when I compare it in the light of, say, his 2 Lion of Macedon books. While Gemmell always has a lightning pace, these King Arthur books feel downright rushed. I don't know why. There is so much that he could have unpacked, so many interesting threads that he could have spent time on. Instead it felt like he rushed these books, depriving us of a richer tale.

However, they still beat the majority of Fantasy published today, so
Aug 01, 2014 BookBandit rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Gemmell is a great story teller, period. I am a big fan of his Drenai Saga (11 books) and this series is just as good. If this series continues the way it is, I will probably say that not only am I a fan of the Drenai Saga, but a fan of all things Gemmell.

An alternate take on Arthurian legend, the Ghost King is a coming of age story. Gemmell deftly blends sword and sorcery with a touch of historical fiction. (The character development is a little sudden, but I think can be attributable to: 1) Ge
Alisha Kennedy
Jun 16, 2016 Alisha Kennedy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hook, Line, and Sinker! I am now hooked on David Gemmal. I couldn't put it down, he actually takes you back in time. And who doesn't love the time of gods and goddesses? 5 stars Mr. Gemmal, Well done!
Alex Jones
Jan 01, 2013 Alex Jones rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was a huge fan of David Gemmell a few years ago, but then stopped reading his books so often because I was running out of them and I didn't want to stop having new books of his to read. However, over New Year I decided I was in the mood for some nostalgia so collected this book from my shelf and finished it within a couple of days. It was exactly as fantastic as I remember.

David Gemmell's writing is not going to shatter your world, it is functional and definitely engrossing, but nothing more t
Scott Kaelen
Ghost King opened with a character named Gwalchmai, and I muttered to myself, “What’s he doing here? He was in Ironhand’s Daughter!” I read on, expecting some clever twist that would explain the two Gwalchmais were really one person... but the twist never came. Reusing a name is a huge turn-off when there’s no pay-off. That aside, Ghost King was quite a good read, a few notches above Ironhand’s Daughter in terms of readabiltyI finished it and started the sequel, “Last Sword of Power”.

By now I've
Denae Christine
Basically, this started off really well. I liked the weak prince idea and the plot that went awry and the stories following the fleeing guards and the crippled hunstman.
Then, the book went wrong when it became too adulty. I don't mind a little murder, even war, but adultery in books is unecessary.
The massive massacres of so many was irksome, though fit. I like how Goroien defeated herself. I liked reading about the young characters and didn't appreciate them suddenly turning around and acting li
Feb 17, 2009 Ben rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Another alternate take on the Arthurian legend, set during the end of the Roman empire, with quite a bit of magic and mysticism. The first half of the book is stronger and more interesting. The second half feels rushed and abbreviated. Additionally, the characters change a bit too much--it feels as if the characters are being forced to become the characters of Arthurian legend, rather than it being a natural evolution.

Aug 02, 2011 Fred rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Despite the fact that it's technically part of a series you could read this as a stand alone novel. This was actually the first book by David Gemmell that I ever read when I was about fifteen years old and I reread it once sometime in my early twenties. It is a retelling of a classic myth although I won't say which one because that would give away the ending if you haven't read this before. Well worth the read!
Joshua Simon
A bit of a let down after reading all of the Drenai Saga. The world, the characters, and the plot all seem a bit rushed and not quite fully developed.

Despite that, I'll keep reading as I hear the series picks up as you go along. Besides, I enjoyed the Drenai Saga too much not to give Gemmell the benefit of the doubt.
A giant pile of "meh".
Louella Mahabir
I love this story. It shows that there are hard truths you need to swallow and that growing up bites. Love is also interestingly explored. Read this. It is quite good.
Geoff Battle
Ghost King falls between two of Gemmell's best cycles, emerging from the Drenai series and before the Rigante books. It is the first of a two book story and although it wraps up the storyline in this volume, a lot of character development takes place in Ghost King. It follows the path of a slight prince who must face up to his legacy, which becomes more and more complex as his journey develops. There is a broad mix of characters set against an alternate history of the British Dark Ages, with eno ...more
Brian Turner
Jun 12, 2017 Brian Turner rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Gemmell gives his take on the King Arthur legend. It's done fairly well, and he ties it in to the "Sipstrassi Stones" which pop up in quite a few of his other books.
As with many other books of this sort, there's a real "missing" legion on hand to help Arthur to power, back when it was written in 1988 this may have been a more original idea.
Overall it's a well written book with some interesting takes on the legend.
Ian Banks

This is probably the weakest of Mr Gemmell's novels so far. Here's why (IMNSHO):

A): The setting is a mess: like SO many authors in the 70s and 80s, Gemmell gave us a revision/ reinterpretation of the Arthur myth. Like so many authors he based it partly on the sources and history available at the time. Unlike so many other authors he put in a hell of a lot of his own ideas and shifted stuff around so that it fit his story a bit better. So we have a vaguely anglo-saxon setting, some real shifts f

Francesco Manno

We make a brief introduction.
Also today I am talking about a novel by David Gemmell. You'll probably be tired of reading articles on this one author, but unfortunately I can not do anything, I am fond of his narrative style, and you'll have to endure in spite of this and other post dedicated to it. I'm sorry, but the heart can not control.
We come to the book.
The author in this novel takes up the Breton Cycle, radically changing the events related to it and
Apr 03, 2010 Graham rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
GHOST KING is the first in a long-running series of Gemmell books, the 'Stones of Power' books as opposed to the 'Drenai' saga. I knew it was a slim book and would be one I read very quickly. I also knew I would enjoy it a lot, superficially at least.

The thing about being a Gemmell fan is the joy of knowing what to expect. Most of the author's books are written to a specific formula. There will be rampaging, unstoppable armies ravaging a rural landscape. On their side will be witches and wizards
Sep 06, 2015 Derek rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books
Overall, I liked this book. It wasn't the best Gemmell book I've read but I enjoyed most of it. LIKES: 1) Gemmell always infuses human emotions into his books and this is no different. There is a clear undercurrent of romance throughout the book and the love interests, while in a fantasy setting, have a real quality to them. One of my favorite things about this book among the other human emotions included. 2) Somehow he squeezes deep and interesting characters into his short books, something oth ...more
Jun 05, 2012 Jack rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First off, I have seen quite a few poor reviews on this read by one of the greats David Gemmell' The story is a retelling of Arthur and the roman empire ... (sort of) some don't like this and I myself am not a fan of Arthurian retelling, But this has so much more and that part is the least of the story, the main story is of a people who have the power (magic) at their disposal and fit right in with the ancient alien theory, they control the world and time they are in and other worlds visit and m ...more
Federica Leva
Apr 28, 2014 Federica Leva rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy-e-sf
E' noto a tutti chi era Artù, Re di Bretagna. Più in ombra è invece la figura di sua padre, Uther Pendragon, il sovrano che secondo la leggenda prese la bella Igraine e la rese gravida del giovane principe quand'era ancora sposata al romano Gorlois di Cornovaglia. Giocando con le tradizioni celtiche con allegria e astuzia, Gemmell ricostruisce la vita del giovane Uther, immergendolo in un'epoca ambigua, dove miti più antichi - suo amico e compagno, ad esempio, è Culain, personaggio leggendario v ...more
May 11, 2015 Dimitris rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Although a fan of David Gemmell's books, I found Ghost King to be somewhat disappointing. Maybe it's the fact that I've recently finished the Rigante books or that Ghost King is one of the first books by Gemmell but I found it lacking.
Gemmell has some recurring aspects in his books, that although they repeat in most books, he manages to make you like them each time. Redemption, sacrifice, war, loss make Gemmell's characters flawed but interesting. Ghost King did not have any such character. The
Jan 22, 2013 Charles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: high-fantasy
After much debate, I have come across David Gemmel's name a number of times and decided to try out his novels - I was not disappointed - this is standard fair Fantasy, so don't expect to have some great epiphany once this story is completed, but it has great characters and wonderful exposition and this is a good example of how a well written fantasy could be played out - I only give it 4 instead of 5 stars, because of the names in this novel are so FANTASTIC - this was written when that is an ac ...more
Kevin G
I wasn't sure if i'm in the middle of a series, but i thought this was the beginning of one. In any case, i do not think i will be proceeding to the next book or finishing this series. I found that even with the character listing, there were still too many characters to follow and not enough character development. Especially, with the main character and his changed identity. I did not get the sense that he had transition from boy to man, it seemed more like they were two separate entities, a boy ...more
by Ax
Jan 01, 2015 by Ax rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantastico
Tra le Nebbie di...

Questo terzo capitolo (cronologico) delle Sipstrassi è una sterzata violenta di personaggi, ambientazione e trama, fatta eccezione per la presenza delle Pietre e per il "fine", l'eterna lotta contro il Male.
Operazione destabilizzante per il lettore — con conseguente frantumazione di pathos nella continuità della Saga —, ma che si può interpretare come uno di quei salti spazio/tempo immaginifici che hanno sostenuto e alimentato i precedenti volumi.

Qui Gemmell prende la materia
Oct 11, 2011 Cyne rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Awful. I had liked Gemmell's other books, so decided to pick this one up next. Big mistake. It is yet another retelling of the Arthurian legend, except midway through the author apparently goes crazy and decides to ship the protagonist off to another world and make him fight battles that had almost no relation to the main story. Then Gemmell involves Gilgamesh and a crazy goddess and I honestly wondered if I was still reading the same story. There was no setup whatsoever for what he introduces a ...more
Hazel Acevedo
Jan 04, 2013 Hazel Acevedo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It was awesome, like oh my gosh-couldnt put the book down-AMAZING, i love this twist on a classic story and how it unfolds, Im going to probably write an even better review once my mind fully comes back from being mind blown, one thing is for sure prasmaccus and culain were my ultimate favorite characters, even the warrior leader severinus gets top notch for me and gwalchmai just wow. i loved the realism, the purity in the characters, hell the uncanny resemblance to the 300 warriors, gahh i need ...more
Oct 20, 2012 David rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: heroic-fantasy
After the cowboy-themed Wolf in Shadow, David Gemmell returned to more familiar (for him) territory of Heroic fantasy - i.e. swords and sorcery - utilising some of the same characters and concepts from Wolf in Shadow

This novel, basically, re-tells the Arthurian legend, focusing more on Uther Pendragon and how he came to be who he is, with the Siptrassi stones from Wolf in Shadow providing the magic aften associated with the legend.

The result is a pleasant and diverting enough read, but not one o
Mayank Agarwal
Started off well but lost it way early. The Problem was too many things were happening - Arthurian Britain, Gods and there cryptic powers other worlds...just way too many. The writing was lacking in flow, the characters and the world were developed too fast and seem to change quite often.

There were glimpses of brilliance in the plot, only if they were focused upon it would have been much better read.
Miguel Sk
Dec 06, 2011 Miguel Sk rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
I really loved it.
As with other David Gemmell books, you start reading and you are immediately drawn to the story and the characters. It's basically a retold of the Britannia and Arthurian legends with a very different spin.
I felt the book was well achieved even if it looked like some parts were not developed enough (the book could be bigger), or were a bit disconnected from the story.
All in all an awesome book.
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David Andrew Gemmell was a bestselling British author of heroic fantasy. A former journalist and newspaper editor, Gemmell had his first work of fiction published in 1984. He went on to write over thirty novels. Best known for his debut, Legend, Gemmell's works display violence, yet also explores themes in honour, loyalty and redemption. With over one million copies sold, his work continues to sel ...more
More about David Gemmell...

Other Books in the Series

Stones of Power (2 books)
  • Last Sword of Power (Stones of Power, #2)

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