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Deathstalker (Deathstalker #1)

3.92 of 5 stars 3.92  ·  rating details  ·  3,223 ratings  ·  140 reviews
Owen Deathstalker never wanted to be head of his clan. But when his father is murdered and he himself is outlawed by the order of the Empress, Owen must face the fact that destiny has other plans for him...
Mass Market Paperback, 523 pages
Published February 1st 1995 by Roc (first published 1994)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Great laser-mounted cannons of excess! What is this nonsense?

In one first volume of a space opera we have, in no discernible order: Mob-style family feuds! A merciless and corrupt ruler! A hope for the future of Humanity* macguffin! Imprisoned empaths! Clones! A lecherous old woman-hater in charge! Two ninjas who both disguise themselves as Emo Philips! A reluctant hero! A rag-tag band of sidekicks! Killer whores! Naked assassin sex-slaves! Gay assassins in love! Rooftop-guardian-angel-assassin!
I have to say, that if you can't read a book without analyzing and reading to actively criticize, then you will certainly find loads of things to criticize about this book - the gore, the incessantly repeated phrases often within a couple of pages of each other, the cliche's and the ways that the main characters get out of situations. But, I read for pure enjoyment, nothing else, and if like me you read for enjoyment, love fantasy, science-fiction, and pure fun, then you will love this book.

Mary JL
Dec 18, 2009 Mary JL rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of science fiction--esp space opera
Recommended to Mary JL by: Found at sale
Shelves: main-sf-fantasy
Review is a bit late guys--unpacking from the move took longer than I thught! Amazing how much stuff one accumlates after 15 years in one apartment. Did not get much reading done either. (*sigh*)

Onwards to the review. When it first came out, the cover looked to me like the story inside was a Star Wars clone; so I was in no hurry to read it.

However, while there are many similarities to Star Wars, there are such similarities in many space opera tales.

Simon Green's style is interesting. I liked the
I've recently been on something of a Simon Green kick. That's ok, let it out. What can I say? I kind of like this guy. He's prolific as all heck, clearly has a very active imagination and is making a living as a writer. He's practically my idol. However, he also drops books like an overfed pigeon and when you do this there's absolutely no way they are all going to be good. Deathstalker is, I think, the best example of this. When you read a lot of an author's work you start to pick up on their ti ...more
This is definitely not a book for every sci-fi lover. Especially those who like serious space adventures. This book is satirical in nature and explores most standard plot lines for a space opera. Evil ruler, gigantic empire, and epic battles are a given in this book. Plus he adds zombies and all sorts of things you won't find in, say, Star Wars. Also, this book has some of the most reprehensible villains that you find yourself growing a little fond of. My personal favorite is Valentine (though, ...more
Elijah Spector
Now hold on, because I am about to compare Deathstalker to Ivanhoe.

Deathstalker is a very enjoyable book, but its title character has almost nothing to do with that. It's not that Owen Deathstalker (hee hee) is a terrible character, he's just sort of there, much like Wilfred Ivanhoe. But Owen, like Wilfred, is surrounded by so many great characters, and spends so much time not even on the page, that the result is a wonderfully fleshed-out world with a bunch of bizarre characters who may not exac
Sep 09, 2009 Mark rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who really love star wars but want to read something non-star wars
Shelves: sciencefiction

Where to begin?

There's this evil empire of humanity and it's led by the dark evil wait...she's an empress and she's not so dark, but she is evil. Anyway there's this hopeful young farm boy named Luke Skywalk...wait, that's not it. He's a young aristocrat named Owen Deathstalker. So the Empress puts a bounty on the head of Owen for seemingly no reason, causing him to make a run for it.

Luckily, he is rescued by the spunky-yet-beautiful princess Leia...wait, it's
Lauren Smith
It's absolute overkill from beginning to end, but it's quite good fun. Reading Deathstalker is the literary equivalent of going to see a blockbuster for the sheer thrill of awesome special effects, superhuman warriors and amazing fight scenes. In other words, watch out for the one-liners, expect no subtlety, sit back and have a great time as a few bold rebels face insurmountable odds going up against a cruel galactic Empire.
Eric Allen
Book 1 of Deathstalker
By Simon R. Green

A Deathstalker Retrospective by Eric Allen

Welcome to my new retrospective series. We've looked at Science Fiction series in retrospective, and we've looked at Fantasy series in retrospective. Now, let's take a look at something called Science Fantasy. Science Fantasy has elements of both Science Fiction and Fantasy in it that prevents it from being readily assigned to either genre. A Science Fantasy story will typically make use of both futurist
A long fan of Green's, I first thought about reading the Deathstalker series while working my way through one of his Secret Histories entries (Eddie Drood enlists the help of a Deathstalker, though for the life of me I can't remember which one). The idea sat on a back burner of my reading brain until I found a copy on Amazon for a penny + shipping. Well, why not, I thought? If it's good, great. If it's horrible, not a huge investment, and I could always donate it to the library.

This is a much di
The worst space opera I have read so far... I gave it a try in German and later thoght that maybe the translator fucked up. So when I found an English copy in a friends bookshelf I gave it another try. Nothing improved though.
Characters without any trace of credibility, a world wich keeps getting more unrealistic with every page you turn. An then there's the great mystery how the world manages to present You with even more deadly (yet before never mentioned) antagonists.
I forgot whom You have t
Scott Weber
I have been reading Simon Green's Nightside books and enjoying them well enough, so I thought that I would try one of his other works. I like series and it has been some time since I read any sci-fi, so this sounded pretty good.

This book takes place within a vast human empire run by a tyrant affectionately refered to as the Iron Bitch. The hero, Owen Deathstalker, is a minor noble of an ancient noble house. Somehow, unknown to him, he has run afoul of the empress and finds himself suddenly witho
Dreadful. Repetitive language and tropes ("lithely muscular" over and over again, exploding heads, about 5 mysterious master swordsmen), stiff and stereotypical characters, a plot that doesn't really make much sense, "political intrigue" that's completely unconvincing, villains with the sophistication of Skeletor...

Yeah, the popularity of this book baffles me. If you want space opera, there are authors out there (Alastair Reynolds for one) who can actually write it in a manner which resembles li
Apr 14, 2011 Gregg rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: People who like cool, superhuman abilities
Like many others, I would say the horrendous cover art is misleading. There is plenty of coolness and intrigue to offset some shortcomings in other areas. Each character has different "super" powers and an interesting place in the world of political intrigue and fantastic settings. I originally read it as a trilogy, liked it a lot and then found it increasingly tedious as the series went on. I recently reread the first three books and found them enjoyable again- but I have no plans to revisit th ...more
Pauli Koskinen
Mar 30, 2014 Pauli Koskinen rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anybody who likes same kind of stuff i wrote about..
I read the entire book saga, and I must say that it doesn't let down, last 2 books of the saga, one can live without reading, as they aren't quite as good and don't contribute as much to main books as the first 5. I read first 2 books and listened remaining 5 as audio book versions. Audio book versions were superior of quality and production value, if one likes good flowing audio book, this 8 book set will not leave you cold.

Sum sum summarum: The books aren't Asimo
According to Wikipedia the author intended this to be, to an extent, a parody of space operas. Reviews here warned me that minor characters got a lot of screen time. (Although, I was still surprised that less than half the book was following the protagonist.) Forewarned is forearmed, so I enjoyed it for the sprawling beast that it is. In fact, it was mostly little things that broke me out of the narrative and annoyed me.

I read the Kindle version and the OCR errors were a little distracting. A "c
This is very middle of the road for me - it is entertaining enough for me to finish and to read at a good pace - the learning curve is low so the reader does not get tripped up on too many out of place names or places, however, I also feel that the names were - cheesy - Owen is easy to remember, but Deathstalker - Noun-Verber it is - John Random? - Hazel Dark? sorry, I mean, D'Ark - remember, when you use an apostrophe, replace it with a *cough* -

The story is very straight ahead, and each chapt
I only got 50-60 pages in to this before I had to put it down. The writing jumped all over the place, leaving me pretty confused! It wasn't well written and didn't draw me in at all. I'll own the fact that I'm not a huge fan of "space novels" so they have to be really good to hold my attention. Unfortunately, this wasn't one of them!
Interesting combination of Sci-fi and swordplay. The author has a talent for descriptions and coming up with names of people, places, things that evoke an emotional response. The story is the usual one or few against many but done with style.
Lance Martincich
Brilliant story and a great start to the series. Would recommend it to anyone interested in Sci-Fi and fantasy. Simon R Green has done a wonderful job in "setting up the players" on a galactic chessboard.

Can't wait to see how the story continues
Great sci-fi. It's the kind of book though, that when I begin to tell someone the story it doesen't really sound like a book I'd like! Quite violent and gory in places. But a thrilling story and some fab humour in there too.
At first I didn't like this book. After the first few chapters though it grew on me. I listened to this via audiobook and it was well done. By the end though I enjoyed it enough to give it three stars maybe it deserves 3 1/2.
Nolan M
Fast paced, beautifully written.

A thoroughly enjoyable series.

... of epic proportions.
Either a sincere book that reads like an unintentional parody or a really badly written parody.
Deathstalker #1 - Sci Fi series

Read prior to Jan. '07
First what I loved:

The world created is excellent. I loved the long history and the various people, aliens, people-aliens and creatures that populated the world. The scope of the story line is really big and epic and there is nothing I like more than a nice long story that is built brick by brick and give you enough chance to grow and change with the characters.
The side characters are all great. In a way I enjoyed the side characters more than the main, but they were all rich with their own h
I had very low expectations when I started reading this, because previous books I'd read by Green had been so unfortunate (see _Mistworld_ &c for details), which may have artificially inflated my perception of its enjoyability. That being said, I did *really* enjoy it. It is hyper-melodramatic space opera, with characters who have ridiculous names ("Kid Death") and intrigue and deception and aristocracy and tons of fighting and horrifying alien monstrosities and an evil Empress that people w ...more
Matthew Gill
After having read Twilight of the Empire years ago(and adored it) I had to read Deathstalker upon discovering that there was more stories to hear. It was a good read, all around, and one I did enjoy. However, I have to admit that by the end of it I did find myself expecting a bit more. Still can't quite put my finger on anything specifically, but I just can't rate it at 5 stars. It is charming and rich with some interesting characters like it's predecessor. Not to mention a depth of scope that e ...more
May 30, 2013 Jer rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: sci-fi
- A good bit of action,
- universe & characters had potential.

- Very poorly executed, potential of universe & characters was never realized,
- Characters were flat and one dimensional, all spoke in the same voice and often with the same uninspired lines.
- repetitive not just to a fault, but maddeningly so,
- overblown dialogue and monologues, long winded speeches with little or no content or purpose,
- hyperbole was rampant, seemingly the only tool in the author's bag to get his
I picked up this novel because I've enjoyed other writing by Simon R. Green (specifically, his Nightside series. I really didn't know what I was getting into with this book, and was pleasantly surprised to find a modern-day space-opera, albeit with some tweaks and twists that make it a little unconventional compared to the classic space-operas of the pulp era. (I've been told since then that these aspects are semi-satirical of those golden-era space-operas, and that makes sense.)

I enjoyed the bo
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Simon Richard Green is a British science fiction and fantasy-author. He holds a degree in Modern English and American Literature from the University of Leicester. His first publication was in 1979.

His Deathstalker series is partly a parody of the usual space-opera of the 1950s, told with sovereign disregard of the rules of probability, while being at the same time extremely bloodthirsty.

More about Simon R. Green...

Other Books in the Series

Deathstalker (8 books)
  • Deathstalker Rebellion (Deathstalker, #2)
  • Deathstalker War (Deathstalker, #3)
  • Deathstalker Honor (Deathstalker, #4)
  • Deathstalker Destiny (Deathstalker, #5)
  • Deathstalker Legacy (Deathstalker, #6)
  • Deathstalker Return (Deathstalker, #7)
  • Deathstalker Coda (Deathstalker, #8)
Something from the Nightside (Nightside, #1) Agents of Light and Darkness (Nightside, #2) Nightingale's Lament (Nightside, #3) Hex and the City (Nightside, #4) Sharper Than a Serpent's Tooth (Nightside, #6)

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