Ghost King
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Ghost King (Stones of Power #1)

3.87 of 5 stars 3.87  ·  rating details  ·  1,787 ratings  ·  39 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...more
ebook, 304 pages
Published June 8th 2011 by Del Rey (first published 1988)
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Alex Jones
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...more
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...more
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.

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!
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...more
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
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.
Federica Leva
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
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
Josh Meares
Pretty interesting book, a reimagining of the Arthurian legend. Not much to it, but there are no plot holes, everything pretty much makes sense (though it does contradict some stuff in other Gemmell books), and the characters are realistic. That's more than I can say for most books. 3 stars.
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
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
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...more
Dane Peterson
I guess the attempt to tell a different version of the King Arthur story was an interesting idea, but if a book is going to be that far from the original, I'd rather read something brand new. Anyway, it has the often tried "young king-to-be coming into his own and growing from a pouty spoiled brat into a noble warrior" story going on. To be honest, that character (he's in a lot of fantasy books like this) really bores me.
Miguel Sk
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.
Thuro is the typical anti-hero, a mere boy who wants to be a scholar but has to become a warrior and a leader dealing with difficult decisions. He not only has to fight his fellow humans but also immortals, who more often play a cruel game than help the mortals with their Stones of Power, and savage magical creatures.

These may not be Gemmell's best books, but enjoy them You may.
Tanvir Muntasim
Not one of Gemmell's best, this is a traditional heroic fantasy which has a strange mix of historical and mythical characters doing usual Gemmell's heroic protagonist things. Apart from an interesting take on Arthurian legend and occasional flashes of what usually makes Gemmell's fantasies readable, it's mostly predictable fare for someone who has read a few of his books.
David Shakespeare
An interesting use of the disappearance of the Ninth Legion, but this book suffers from cliched characterisation, as well as Gemmell's bizarre claim that his narrative is, while not the way things did unfold, it is the way they should have. A quick read, and relatively enjoyable, but not especially good.
In "Ghost King", David Gemmell takes the Arthurian legend, mixes in some Greek, Roman and Norse mythology and weaves an entertaining fantasy for his devoted fans. There's love and hate, honor and villainy, redemption and loss -- all topics Gemmell masterfully wields to make his characters all too human.
Easy going, fun to read, interesting take on arthurian legend.
Uses Britain as setting with correct historical names, but didn't really give the feeling of the dark ages in britain, which was a shame (would love to experience it)
All in all books ok just prefer the more traditional take on the legend.
Is it weird that I remember ABSOLUTELY nothing from this book? NOTHING. I mean sure I forget stuff about books sometimes even major elements but I always remember something... ANYTHING. With this I'm at a blank. I'm gonna go skim through it right now just to make sure I haven't gotten senile.
This was a quick fun read, but I agree with an earlier reviewer who said the character development took place too suddenly. I also found that I enjoyed the younger Thuro to the 'older' Uther. But if you like action, adventure and the Arthur legend, this is an interesting perspective.
Peter Carlisle
A fantasy/historical take on King Arthur. Unlike some of his other series, this one seems to be set in the real world- at least most of it. Takes place around the time of the Roman withdrawal from Britain. Pretty enjoyable if you're into that sort of thing.
I've read this twice before, but since my recent obsession with Merlin I thought I'd brush up on my variations of the Arthurian legend. Whilest I enjoyed this book, its not one of Gemmell's best, especially as the ending is completely rushed.
Debby Allen
The first Gemmell I read - obviously liked it because I went on to all of them. But re-reading I can see he hasn't yet mastered retelling a well known tale, as he did with the Troy series. But it's still a good read.
First in the series. This starts of as another retelling of the King Arthur story, with alot of differences. Really good, the plot and pacing is fast, and you're always wanting more!
Taha rabbani
چرا من هر کتاب فانتزی می‌خونم انتظار دارم با یک ارباب حلقه‌های دیگه مواجه بشم؟ اشکال کار در اینه که من با بزرگترین اثر فانتزی شروع کردم و هیچ وقت بهتر از آن نصیبم نخواهد شد
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.
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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...
Legend (Drenai Saga, #1) Waylander (Drenai Saga, #3) Lord of the Silver Bow (Troy, #1) The King Beyond the Gate (Drenai Saga, #2) The First Chronicles of Druss the Legend (Drenai Saga, #6)

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