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Stealing the Elf-King's Roses: The Author's Cut

3.58  ·  Rating Details  ·  418 Ratings  ·  38 Reviews
It's CSI, Jim, but not as you know it...!

Psychoforensics specialist and freelance prosecutor Lee Enfield works with the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office as a lanthanomancer -- a magic-worker trained in Seeing and revealing the truth. When she and her fayhound partner Gelert are brought in to do “discovery” for the investigation into the murder of an Elf named Omren d
ebook, Expanded and revised edition
Published 2011 by Badfort Press (first published November 1st 2002)
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(showing 1-30 of 916)
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Lis Carey
Jan 12, 2011 Lis Carey rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: f-sf
This is not an especially easy book to describe.

The cosmological background is that there are multiple alternate Earths, six of which currently have regular communication and trade with each other. A seventh has just been discovered as the story opens, and is subsequently revealed to be our own. One of these worlds, Alfheim, is the source of the gating technology that makes intercontinuum travel and trade possible, and of the fairy gold that makes gating technology practical and affordable. The
Jan 16, 2008 Ann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ann by: Journeywoman
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides
This is that rare beast, the book that can be legitimately shelved as both science fiction and fantasy. When it was first published, I immediately snagged a copy. The title intrigued me, and the premise sounded fascinating, even if the first cover was a little cheesy. Plus, I'd read some of the author's Star Trek tie-in novels and enjoyed them. So I was curious to see what Mme. Duane could do in her own universe. Universes, in this case: these stories are set in a bundle of parallel universes. O ...more
Sue Bowling
Aug 05, 2010 Sue Bowling rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: recently-read
Generally enjoyable fantasy, but a little hard to follow at times. I loved the detective's sidekick.
Jan 18, 2012 Janus rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful, dense work that is the culmination of a dream Diane Duane deferred for decades. The pinnacle of her work — in its ideas, if not necessarily in her writing abilities — and well worth the read. That said, the book does suffer under the immense weight of its many ideas, and I badly wished all the information on the Seven Worlds contained had been exposed through a series of narratives prior to this one.

However, while I admit that this work won't work for many, as a devotee of Duane's
Jul 20, 2011 Candace rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dylan Tomorrow
Mar 02, 2016 Dylan Tomorrow rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: fantasy and scifi lovers
Recommended to Dylan by: Diane Duane did another sale and it called for me :D
Diane Duane has done it again!

The worldbuilding is gorgeous, the main characters are fierce and brave and so very human (no offense intended, Gelert! :D), the way magic works is remarkable and amazing and may by my favorite magic "implementation" I've seen sofar.

Once again, she brings her magic poetic language out in the open in the last third and I loved every page of it.

I usually don't like crime novels, but I loved this one. THough of course it is more of a genre buster fantasy/scifi/crime/ad
Jul 18, 2016 Rachelle rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone!
Shelves: favorites
I've read this book many times. It's one of my favourites from Diane Duane. It combines my like of crime dramas on TV with a wonderful and believable modern fantasy world.

The Elves are more like Tolkien's elves; tall, beautiful and immortal. But they are in a modern world and have modern flaws. They are also not exactly the main characters in this book, though they do figure predominately.

To sum up, this book involves alternate universes and how they interact with each other. The main character,
Sharon Michael
Jan 10, 2012 Sharon Michael rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting plot/characters and world building. I kept thinking of this book as one of the rather tightly plotted spy/detective novels set in an international setting and that is very much what it is on one level. The main characters are futuristic human 'detectives' with some paranormal abilities investigating an elven death, with political and racial prejudice tangles involved. The investigation involves them in an investigation team sent to the elven world.

Interesting characters with go
Ashley Lambert-Maberly
Didn't finish it--in truth, barely started it (Kindle said I was 12% in when I abandoned it).

I used to feel it was unfair to judge a book if I hadn't slogged all the way through, but if, say, half the audience can't finish a book, isn't that worth knowing about it?

I love mysteries, I love fantasies, I love Thraxas, for example, or City of Stairs, so I thought this would be right up my alley. Instead of welcoming me in, however, it read like Volume 12 of some long-established series where it wo
Feb 13, 2014 Sarahz rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an odd one. I expected it to be a bit romance-y, given the cover art, but it's really a straight up procedural. The most romance it has is the bit at the very end where the main character calls up her cheating ex-boyfriend to ask him out on a reconciliation date, so if anything it gets negative points in that category.

So, I went into it expecting a slightly different book, but once I adjusted expectations it was an interesting procedural (not really a mystery), and had some neat world b
[3 stars] This is a book to read if you like world-building. In this novel, traveling between dimensions is commonplace, and five alternative Earths (with a recently-discovered sixth Earth about to join in) have formed tight business and cultural ties—mostly. On one of these worlds, much like our Earth except for technological differences and the use of psychic powers in the judicial system, Lee Enfield and her business partner Gelert, a fayhound, investigate the murder of an Alfen (Elf). They e ...more
May 26, 2016 Erin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 02, 2014 Ariel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I started this book, it wasn't what I was expecting. Instead, it was a sci-fi/fantasy mashup of at least three different genres (such that I can't help wondering which genre the review on the cover refers to Diane Duane as a master of). Probably due to this dissonance from my expectations, I did not get into the book as much as I would have liked--until about the last third of the book. It's probably no coincidence that this happens at about the same time the plot gets bigger, with worldswi ...more
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It is set in multiple universes in which people can travel between the universes. The two main characters are Lee and her partner Gelert who are psychic forensic specialists. They become involved with trans-universe politics involving the King of the Elves.

After really enjoying the book, it actually lost me a bit at the end with the remaking of the universes. I guess I just didn't quite get the metaphysics or whatever was going on.

I did enjoy the twist of our Eart
Rena McGee
Stealing the Elf-King’s Roses is an interesting combination of political intrigue and police procedural, and has the feel of a “grown up” version of Diane Duane’s Young Wizards series. (In fact, some of the alternate earths mentioned will be easily recognizable by anyone who has read the Young Wizard books.) This is a near-future science fiction/urban fantasy where a string of alternate Earths are connected by worldgates. (I should also
mention here that the Earth the protagonist comes from is n
May 02, 2013 Lise rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Diane Duane has been in the writing business for ages. "Stealing the Elf-King's Roses" is the only book of hers that I have although I have read "So You Want to be a Wizard".

"Stealing the Elf-King's Roses" was relaunched in new clothes in 2011. Diane had felt the need to fix some issues that she had noticed over the years. My book is the original version.

Who among us is able to state honestly that we have no prejudices? I know I cannot. I try not to let those prejudices interfere with the way I
Camilo Emiliano  Rosas Echeverria
I found actually painful to finish reading this book, but it would have been a disservice to readers reviewing it without actually reading it until the end. What others may call lyrical prose I'd rather define plainly bad writing: Duane hardly shows, she just keeps telling, to the point that in many passages I kept wondering what actually happened. The whole narration is ill-composed: at first I was fascinated by an original mistery novel, reminiscent of Cast a deadly spell or Operation Caos, bu ...more
Apr 22, 2013 Dark-Draco rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This book could be the epitome of the phrase 'don't judge a book by its cover'! If I was going on that alone, I would guess it was a cheap, high fantasy children's book, with stereotypical characters and a plot that involves a big wrong can you be?

I personally think this leans towards the Sci-fi end of the spectrum, with gates to travel between parallel universes and ships that can travel faster then light. Ok, so they are powered by fairy-gold, and there are elves, and basically a t
Sue Lyssa Stone Shaffer
Next book please

There is a teaser for The Case of the Elf Killers at the end of Stealing the Elf King's Roses. After poking about on Amazon I cannot find the book.

Don't be withholding and mean now.. when will it release? Inquiring minds want to read it... NOW!!!
Dec 30, 2014 Audrey rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book, it was familiar and reminded me of Diane's other works, while still being original and unique compared to anything else I've read. Also, I've never really read a futuristic but fantastical crime/ universe traveling story before.

Clearly, it's a hard book to describe, but is worth the read. Diane Duane plays with ideas of good and evil, as she does so well, and the "Choice" of a species/population to allow death into their midst, as she describes in her Young Wizards s
Jan 05, 2013 Lora rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this, the characters, the world-building, the fact that Lee was a woman who could shoot an intruder and love cocoa and have a painful breakup that bugged her months later and be dedicated to her job and have friends and be sensitive about her plainness. Usually female characters get to pick two.

I got lost at the end, though, and sometimes had to reread things a few times to stop going "pardon?!" One major twist that was surprising for one reader was extremely apparent to me and
Apr 03, 2013 April rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 Stars
I liked this, I liked that it started out as an alternate world mystery. I loved the way the main and her partner went after justice. I was a little bewildered by the title but that of course sorted itself out by the end. However, I would have given five stars if it hadn't blown up into a one woman against the world scenario - it just got too big too fast. But, it was still a good read with interesting characters and world building.
Lynn Abbey
Part fantasy, part science fiction, and part police procedural this is a truly genre-straddling book. The parts don't always blend as well as I would have liked. I came away thinking I would almost rather Duane had told the complete story three times (it could work...) because wherever I was, I wished for the insights the other perspectives could have given me. But the characters are engaging and the writing's top-notch.
Sep 29, 2009 Juliana rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sff
There's some neat stuff in here, and some rather amusing stuff (also, the cover is AMAZING OMGWTFPINK). Ultimately I felt like Duane overreached and got a bit too epic and heavy-handed (I had a similar reaction to the end of her Star Trek Rihannsu series), and that the worldbuilding could have used a bit more work. On the other hand, I wouldn't mind reading another book set in this universe.
This is a fantasy novel, with alternate worlds, and a police procedural with legal wrangling and investigations. I like the tough woman protagonist and her sentient-kinda-big-dog partner a lot. It rather reminded me of Kate Wilhelm's mystery novels, which are set in the present day, with no fantasy elements at all.
I enjoyed this book, but I found I kept wanting more. More depth, more description, more exploration of the world. Then the climax hit and suddenly there was too much and I had no idea what was going on! There were some very cool ideas, and I wouldn't mind seeing more of the world.
Jul 01, 2009 Wealhtheow rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
A much more mature novel than it looks/sounds. The main character, a plain middle-aged woman investigating increased murders of elves across the worlds, seeks ever deeper into a plot that just gets brouder and more interesting as you go.
Jul 03, 2010 Eric rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I had a few issues getting engaged with the story. For everything that goes on, the writing feels too light. Like the ideas are bigger than the book itself.

That said, it's a relatively easy read. A good summer book.
Apr 13, 2013 Roslyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read back in 2004. I remember that I found some of the prose a bit clunky, but found the ideas explored really interesting. It concerned alternate worlds and elves - don't remember much else, but I did enjoy it!
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Diane Duane has been a writer of science fiction, fantasy, TV and film for more than thirty years.
Besides the 1980's creation of the Young Wizards fantasy series for which she's best known, the "Middle Kingdoms" epic fantasy series, and numerous stand-alone fantasy or science fiction novels, her career has included extensive work in the Star Trek TM universe, and many scripts for live-action and a
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“We knew you were hurting,” Gelert said. “But sometimes—that idiom about being there for somebody, actually just means to be there. Doing anything, saying anything, sometimes you know it'll hurt them worse than just being quiet, and being close.” 2 likes
“She thought briefly of one police force in a neighboring state, some years back, which without a second thought had for many years classified people murdered in its jurisdiction as “male victim,” “female victim,” and “prostitute.” 1 likes
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