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Gatherer of Clouds (Initiate Brother #2)

4.11  ·  Rating Details ·  652 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
The magnificent concluding volume of The Initiate Brother. This fantasy interweaves Asian culture, mysticism, and martial arts with magic in an epic story of war, deception, illicit passion, and mystery. Initiate Brother Shuyun, spiritual advisor to the military governor of the province of Seh, receives a shocking message from the barbarian lands--the massive army ofthe Go ...more
Paperback, 608 pages
Published November 1st 1992 by DAW
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Stevie Kincade
Jan 29, 2017 Stevie Kincade rated it liked it
Gatherer of clouds is the sequel to The Initiate Brother a court-intrigue Fantasy set in an unspecified ancient Asian setting. A story of mystic monks, ambitions failed and realised, military strategy and political manouvering, Russell presents a fully realised world and a large cast of characters.

I enjoyed The Initiate Brother quite a bit, but it somehow took me 6 months to get around to Gatherer of Clouds . Given the complex plot machinations and the number of characters involved I expected
Kat  Hooper
Jul 17, 2011 Kat Hooper rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.

Gatherer of Clouds is the sequel to Sean Russell’s The Initiate Brother, a story which is not so much about the Initiate Brother Shuyun, spiritual advisor to Lord Shonto, as it is about the entire Shonto household — a household that is seen as a threat by an insecure emperor. And with good reason, for Lord Shonto is an honorable, intelligent, and insightful man who has raised his children to be his equals and who has surrounded himself with a competent and
Feb 11, 2012 Metaphorosis rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed, 2015-rev

3.5 stars

Sent away from the capital in a nominal propmtion, Shonto Motoru finds the threat from barbarian tribes to be a very real danger to the Empire of Wa. The barbarians have support from unexpected places, and Shonto must decide how to respond, when any course looks like treachery to the suspicious Emperor. Shonto's Spiritual Advisor, the talented monk Shuyun, faces his own dilemmas as he questions aspects of his faith just as others look to him for guidance.

The pre
Jun 06, 2008 Tracy rated it it was amazing
In many ways, part two of this book is far superior to the first, but I have tried to review them as one story. Because, unlike a serial series, a sequential series hangs on each other. You cannot have the Return of the King without the Fellowship of the Rings.
Here we find resolution, and the answers to all the question Russell has raised, and the happy ending we all secretly have been waiting for.
Robin Tell-Drake
A flawed but beloved old favorite from college, one I worry will pass from the collective memory sooner than it ought. That said, I must confess that I'm giving it stars based, I suppose, on a separate scale from that I might apply to Beowulf, say, or Dubliners. Perhaps--and I am realizing this as I consider the question of how many stars to award here--I use a five-star scale not so much as an absolute range of value applicable across all books, but as a measure of the extent to which a book me ...more
Dec 12, 2013 Mark rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kamal Syed
Aug 03, 2014 Kamal Syed rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Made DNA
Aug 20, 2010 Made DNA rated it liked it
This book, while an interesting, well-thought out, deep tale suffers from a lack of knowledge of Japanese culture (on which it is 90% based) on the part of the writer.

Touted as set in a "magical fantasy Orient" (a word I personally despise), it tells the story of Brother Shuyun (from The Initiate brother), Lord Shonto (governor of the province of Seh) and a large cast of others as they discover and fight off a massive invasion by desert clans who live to the north. Claiming to the be the savior
Scott Wozniak
Nov 09, 2013 Scott Wozniak rated it liked it
This story is profound. And the writing is masterfully done. So why 3 stars? Because while the themes were moving and the paragraphs beautiful, this book spends WAY too much time on non-essential elements, such as side characters (we really didn't need scene after scene with the consort of the Emperor) and poetry (the few tasteful poems of the first book became frequent and long).

The ending leaves me not sure if I'm happy or not. That's not bad in and of itself--it's a complex tale. But it's wa
Sep 23, 2012 Barbara rated it really liked it
Shelves: sf
This book (both books actually) consider loyalty, courage, faith and compassion and more besides. I particularly liked that the last 20% or so of this book dealt with the aftermath of the war. There are consequences even for the winners that can't be ignored.

It isn't perfect. It does drag a little in the middle and I never really bought into the main love story but it is well worth reading all the same.
Apr 22, 2012 Mars rated it liked it
(3.5 stars)

(Written while about halfway through, may update later.)

This is a sequel second half of the Initiate Brother.

It's rather similar, but a bit more boring, as there is little new or hidden information coming to light - they just re-hash the same old data, and occasionally change the numbers, but nothing like the first book.

The second half (of the second half) picks up a bit, however.

It's not bad, but only just manages to pull its weight in shelf-space.
Jan 30, 2016 Outmind rated it really liked it

A short and well written fantasy series. Some aspects could have been done more aptly, but all in all every loose end is somehow tied together and the reader is left with a sense of both satisfaction at the end as well as a bit of sad bitterness that comes from bidding farewell to "people" whose lives have penetrated your own for a couple of weeks.
May 12, 2008 Ronando rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Asians. People who love fantasy and asian history.
Recommended to Ronando by: Josh.
Shelves: fantasy_scifi
A wonderful book of an asian land with exquisite formality. The story of a monk, his lord, the brotherhood of monks an emperor and so much, much more. An excellent writer who needs no explosive and grand actions to succeed in his efforts.

Better than the first. Highly recommended.
May 19, 2008 Chris rated it really liked it
A fun, complex world and story written well. High literature? No. Worth reading? Yes. This book and the previous one (1/2 and 2/2) really feel like a single long book that was just too big to publish in a single volume.
There were some spectacular scenes in this one, that even ten years later I occasionally think about. Wish this series had continued.
Bill Mead
Jun 14, 2008 Bill Mead rated it it was amazing
The second half of Initiate Brother. This is not a "series" but a continuation of the story which was too long for one novel. Enjoy it while it lasts.
Conrad Toft
Aug 14, 2014 Conrad Toft rated it really liked it
I enjoyed the book and the characters, but not as much as the first book. Odd that. I'm not really sure why.
Mar 16, 2012 Elizabeth rated it it was ok
I registered a book at!
Geoffrey Michaelis
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Mar 01, 2008
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Apr 15, 2013
Scott Plumlee
Scott Plumlee rated it it was amazing
Dec 28, 2013
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Ezell rated it it was amazing
Dec 27, 2012
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Ken Graham rated it it was amazing
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Aka Sean Thomas Russell

Sean Russel has co-written, with Ian Dennis, a mystery series called "Memoirs of a Bow Street Runner". The first volume of the series was published by Bantam under their joint pen name, T.F. Banks.

Sean Russell was born 1952 in Toronto. At the age of three his family moved to the outskirts of the city, where they lived in a cottage at the beach of Lake Ontario. At the age of
More about Sean Russell...

Other Books in the Series

Initiate Brother (2 books)
  • The Initiate Brother (Initiate Brother, #1)

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