Phönix (Vlad Taltos, #5)
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Phönix (Vlad Taltos #5)

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4.1 of 5 stars 4.10  ·  rating details  ·  4,054 ratings  ·  48 reviews
"Ich war ernsthaft sauer, und irgenwas würde ich verdammt schnell nochmal unternehmen , Unsinn hin oder her. Ich setzte Bannbrecher in Bewegung und faßte mein Schwert fester. Die Zähne knirschten. Ich sandte ein Gebet an Verra, die Dämonengöttin, und bereitete mich darauf vor, meinen Angreifern gegenüberzutreten. Dann passierte etwas Ungewöhnliches. Mein Gebet wurde erhört...more
Paperback, 298 pages
Published 2004 by Klett-Cotta (first published October 1st 1990)
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Contrarius
What fine, fine books these are. Insert satisfied "ahhhhhhhh" here. I can't imagine why I never finished the series when I was reading these back in the 80's.

These books seem to have aged very well. I really see nothing that would mark them as "older" fantasy, or that would prevent anyone who enjoys "modern" fantasy from having a heckuva lot of fun with them. Brust tortures Vlad just as much as any author of "dark fantasy" does today, he's is just as morally gray (at least to start with) as any...more
Jamie
Not as much fun as the last book, because we're back to anguish over the pending revolution and trying to rescue Vlad's wife, who doesn't want to be rescued. Not fun to watch a marriage break up. It's poignant, but again, not much fun to watch somebody come to the realization that they might be a bad person.

There's some good stuff here, though, plenty of action and adventure. I enjoyed the drummer. I enjoyed Vlad meeting the Empress. I'm not sure where Brust is taking the character next, since t...more
Rich
This wasn't my favorite of the series, mostly because Vlad spent too much time being troubled by his wife and other humans instead of putting pointy things in the dragaerans, but less than favorite Brust is still better than most people's best. I've only a few more to read before I've caught up--including my least favorite, Athyra and my favorite, Issola. Maybe I'll skip Athyra--boring. Or, maybe it will be better the second time around?
Maggie K
probably a bit more than a 3.0, due to the fact that the mehness I am feeling is because the main character is in a 'meh' place in his own life. A transition novel, and I am very curious about the 'new' Vlad!
Brian Niski
During an attempt on his life, Vlad prays to his goddess Verra for aid and receives it. As payment, Verra requests Vlad kill the King of Greenaere, an island kingdom where magic does not work. Vlad agrees. A drummer in the forest named Aibynn tends his wounds. Guards arrest both of them. Aliera and Cawti free Vlad using elder sorcery. Back in Adrilankha, Vlad is still stuck between the Jhereg and his wife's revolutionists. Greenaere declares war on the Empire. Cawti is arrested. Vlad pursues Bor...more
Elsi
Loved this book just like all the others before, but it left me with more than one feeling about it. I usually have one very strong feeling about a book when I finished it, sympathy, the embrace of change or confusion and disappointment on the other side of the scale.

I feel a lot more sympathy for Cawti now and I think the overall change that happened to Vlad and his life is good, although I had (which is probably strange if you look at it real hard) a lot of sympathy for him as he and his life...more
Jen
Well now, that changes everything! And this book left me with a book hang-over, so I am actually chafing at the bit to read the next book in this series.

But let me back up: When we last left our fateful hero, Vlad, in Taltos, he was traveling down the path of dissolution of his marriage to Cawti. This book, being an odd book, I speculated would mean a glimpse into Vlad's past. However, it picks up right where we left off.

Through some statements made on the internet - take their trustworthiness w...more
Rebecca
I found the book very mechanical and boring and probably wouldn't have finished it if it weren't so short. People do stuff, but we hardly get to know the motivation behind their actions, and there's no characterisation to speak of. I couldn't bring myself to care about anything. The author seems to be aware of this, since he's lampshading it in the end, letting the narrator say that he wished they'd found a narrator who was able to better get emotions across. That was the only time the book made...more
Matt Simmons
The best Taltos book yet. Brust continues to take all the standard fantasy conventions, blow them up, and then put them back together in an ironic noir blender to wonderful results. All the over-wrought plot you've come to love, alongside action and snark through the roof--the things that make these books so fun. But Brust also goes back to the quite touching, psychological fleshing out of Vlad he did in Teckla, and it really does a lot to make this fascinating character even more deep, empathet...more
Chris
I think in some ways, this book has been the best of the series. There is real upheaval in the protagonist's life - perhaps too much - and significant change is coming. I'm not sure what it says that I was far more emotionally invested in the death of a minor character than I was in the death of a relationship. Perhaps because one was coming for a while now and the other was sudden and unexpected. This book was really about Vlad, perhaps to an extent not seen since book 1, and the plot only serv...more
Chy
I feel like I should mention---have felt I should mention for some time, here---that I don't read other reviews for this series, unless they're from someone I know. It's because, for this series, I don't really care what most people think. I'm not trying to be an ass; I'm trying to say something about the books, themselves. I get something out of them that feels all mine, intensely personal, and I feel like Brust left everything open just for me to do that. And that says...something.

Okay, 4.5, I...more
Betty
I don't know what it was about this story, but it was definitely something to do with the "voice", or lack thereof, and how it just seemed not right for the place setting of the story.

Could have something to do with a criticism I received on my own writing to the effect that dialog was clunky due to the fact that my characters speak in a vaguely Elizabethan style from time to time. It makes sense for them, considering who they are and where they are. They should NOT be speaking like people from...more
Jenn
Phoenix - I have to say that I enjoyed this one better than Taltos. It didn't have nearly as much of the constant flashbacks. I do continually find myself confused since each of these books hops back and forth in time, but it doesn't bother me too very much.
Tom Whalley
Best Vlad Taltos book yet. It opens with Vlad being hired by a goddess to assassinate a king, and Brust knows when to avoid following a tired trend. The assassination's over by page 20, and to avoid spoilers, the rest of the book is spent saying "fuck you" to Vlad's regular life. Brust could have easily finished the book by resetting the slate, sitcom-style, to let him continue to write similar pulp fiction books over and over again. Instead, he wrote himself out of easy and into something new a...more
Randy Jarvis
Main Character (vlad) is great in this book. Still not loving the "wife has turned into a commie and doesn't love me anymore" plotline, but Vlad's actions around that plotline are fun to read about at least.
Roger N.
I didn't remember this one at all. I had a rough outline of the first couple of Vlad Taltos books in my head -- not every beat, but a good idea of what was going on. This one read as if it was completely new to me, and when I think about it, the only real thing I can remember from any of the later books is a framing device and not the actual story of the novel at all. (Also, since I can't seem to Google an answer without getting into major spoiler territory for the four or five novels I haven't...more
Gaston Keller
Very enjoyable. Things are getting very interesting in the life of Vlad... Eager to read the next book in the series.
meeners
i quite liked the way brust takes us through vlad's change of heart, without any preaching or smugness. the way brust structures the plot is also interesting, and owes a lot, i think, to dashiell hammett; a lot of potentially rich (but also periphery) areas are ushered away in favor of the driving force of the book (here, the entirety of experience as seen through vlad's perspective).

the resolution with greenaere was a bit too pat for me, and i still have a lot of unanswered questions regarding...more
Joel Neff
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Chris Douglass
It dwells a bit much on Vlad's marriage. Not my favorite in the set, so far.
Hannah
I liked this book much better than some of the previous ones. It was cool to see a part of Dragaera other than Adrilankha for once, to see that life is different outside of the empire. I wish there was even more time spent on Greenaere and getting to know Aibynn. It was surprising and intriguing finding out the relationship between Verra and Aliera and Vlad. It was also satisfying to finally have Cawti express some emotion towards Vlad at the end. I wonder if Morrolan and Noish-pa will become fr...more
Susan
Vlad takes on a new unexpected direction here, and the possibilities are fascinating. This book revolves around the irreconcilable differences of worldview that have cropped up between Vlad and his wife. As usual, Vlad's wife Cawti is almost as incomprehensible to me as she is to Vlad, and I wish I could understand her better. Vlad is a beautiful unreliable narrator, and I love watching the moments of epiphany as he learns tidbits about himself.

(Guessing at read date.)
Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides
This was where this series initially started to lose me, I think. I didn't like it or its sequel, Athyra, very much. This was probably not helped by completely failing to read the series in the proper sequence; I missed some connections that way. But I still don't quite understand why it was such a big deal to mess with the House representative to the Empire.
Nathan
This may be my favorite book in the series so far. The time line was what I think of as the "current" one where the characters interact in the ways I expect them to. There was action, new and interesting characters, and more of Brust being a communist. While I don't agree with his thoughts, he did a much better job of giving me something to think about beyond the immediate story without being as heavy handed as he has been.
Charlie
This is the fifth book in the Vlad Talos series where he must do a hit for his god Verra. This causes a ripple effect that Vlad must try to calm.

This was a very easy read yet enjoyable. Steven Brust is an excellent writer who gives birth to an intriguing world of fantasy. His easy style of writing creates characters that are identifiable and likable.
Jonathan Laughlin
My favorite since the first one. I had told myself I was going to give this series a break after finishing "Phoenix," but the way this one ended, and knowing there are many more in this as-yet-unfinished series might force me to read book #6 that much sooner.
Kai Manne
This series get better and better with each book. Characters develop and evolve. There are not necessarily 'happy' endings.

And slowly the later mysteries emerge. What started off as light reading has slowly developed into my new can't put down series.
Karen
One of the better Vlad Taltos books, it answers questions, but presents enough new ones to have me wanting more. Vlad is forced to confront the tension in his life between the general and the specific, particularly in respect to his profession.
Dan
A story of Way Back When in Vlad's life. He spends a long time thugging, then gets involved in religion and politics, mostly to his detriment. Some interesting ideas here, but Vlad spends an irritating amount of time blundering around planless.
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Dragaera: Phoenix 1 4 Oct 12, 2012 01:33AM  
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Steven Karl Zoltán Brust (born November 23, 1955) is an American fantasy and science fiction author of Hungarian descent. He was a member of the writers' group The Scribblies, which included Emma Bull, Pamela Dean, Will Shetterly, Nate Bucklin, Kara Dalkey, and Patricia Wrede, and also belongs to the Pre-Joycean Fellowship.

http://us.macmillan.com/author/steven...

(Photo by David Dyer-Bennet)
More about Steven Brust...
Jhereg (Vlad Taltos, #1) Yendi (Vlad Taltos, #2) Taltos (Vlad Taltos, #4) Dragon (Vlad Taltos, #8) Issola (Vlad Taltos, #9)

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