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The Dark Volume (The Glass Books #2)

3.56 of 5 stars 3.56  ·  rating details  ·  1,327 ratings  ·  154 reviews
Gordon Dahlquist transfixed readers across the world with his dazzling literary debut, the epic Victorian tale The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters. Now the internationally bestselling author continues an adventure like no other, featuring three heroes you will never forget.

Awakening from a fevered delirium, Celeste Temple finds herself in a fishing village on the remote I
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Published March 24th 2009 by Bantam (first published 2008)
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mark monday
apropos of nothing at all, and because no one asked, here is a list of the small number of steampunk novels i've read, in order of preference.

1. The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters... my favorite; pure pleasure from beginning to end
2. The Dark Volume
3. Leviathan... highly enjoyable - for teh children!
4. The List of Seven... fast-paced and atmospheric fun
5. and 6. Soulless and Changeless... amusing fluff. often eye-rolling and rather poorly written. i'm surprised by the accolades this series has
May 18, 2009 Alan rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Patient converts
I really liked The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters, so I was naturally excited to discover, quite by chance, that Dahlquist had written a sequel. It's hard to follow up a successful debut, though, and unfortunately in many ways The Dark Volume does not measure up to its predecessor.

Oh, The Dark Volume is by no means a bad book. Dahlquist retains his gift for description and love of refined language. Indeed, the new book seems at its most alive during the characters' various dialogues; would that
In finishing this book, Dorothy Parker came to mind... "This is not a novel to be tossed lightly aside. It should be thrown with great force."

The greatest joy that I experienced with this book came when I was finally finished and could set it aside. I disliked The Dark Volume so intensely that my opinion of the first book (in what is now clearly intended to be a series), The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters, was actually tainted by association.

Gordon Dahlquist, what happened? Oh wait, I know. Th
Kira Fisher
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 15, 2009 Shelley rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Shelley by: Lisa Gines
I enjoyed this book tremendously, as a continuation of one of my favorite books of all time. The pacing of the further adventures of Celeste, the Doctor and Cardinal Chang made it very hard to put down. Each section for each character had its own mini-cliffhanger to keep you wondering how they were ever going to reunite and prevail. And the big cliffhanger at the end ensures the adventure will continue! The author’s writing is extremely clever and the language he uses to describe situations and ...more
Aug 17, 2009 emily rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: folks with stomach flu, who will sympathize with the vomiting.
This is less a novel than a single extended chase scene with two main features: interchangeable characters and vomiting. There is so, so much vomiting. (Also headaches. And waxy skin. And splitting fingernails (ew). And "gummed" eyelids. What has to happen for an eyelid to become "gummed" anyway? It is clearly in some way related to decomposition, but I am insufficiently familiar with the nature of corpses to fully understand.)

I return to my point.

This is essentially an extended chase scene in w
1656680 I am so angry.

The first book is wonderful, and I couldn't wait to dig into this. But as much as I wanted to love this I just can't, why because it Dahlquist didn't do his job.

If there is any real flaw in the first book is that Dahlquist loved his characters too much, here it feels like he stopped caring about them entirely. He doesn't know what to do with them and they just wander around aimlessly. Half the book is solely dedicated to them moping. The spirit of high adventure is gone, no
On a good deal of reflection, and considering that this was the first book in the series I read (despite being the middle episode), I am floored by how good it was.

I picked it up at a secondhand book op-shop for $2, on the off chance that it was going to be enjoyable, knowing nothing about it, craving some good fantasy, and not even realising it was part of a series.

Later, reading the intro, Dahlquist assured me I could still enjoy it, despite not having read the first. In many ways, I wish I ha
Gordon Dahlquist’s second book The Dark Volume is accurately titled. Like the great airship that crashes on the Iron Coast at the end of the first book, it lacks the lift of its predecessor, The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters. Instead of the Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso format of The Divine Comedy Dahlquist begins with the Ascension, followed by the Descension. Will the third book be the Rescension?

Miss Temple, Cardinal Chang, and Doctor Svenson have survived their confrontation with the c
Sam Grove
To say I really enjoyed this is an understatement! From the instant I finished the first in the series (The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters), I was desperate to read the next one but a copy didn't come into my bookshop for ages! As soon as I ordered one and it arrived, I jumped right into it and immediately fell in love all over again. The trio of unlikely heroes are so well described and their character flaws are so uniquely human that I feel as if I know them. Which makes it all the more sadde ...more
Jun 06, 2009 Abigail rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
I can honestly say I can't bring myself to finish this book. It's not from lack of trying, but there's too much going on I can't bring myself to enjoy it. I really liked "Glass Books of Dream Eaters" but this one just seems to drag. It's like the convoluted plotlines from the first book get even more twisted and confusing and it's hard to follow what is exactly going on. There's too much explination / justification of why certain things are going on rather than plot moving foward so the reader c ...more
Our trio of heroes carry on their madcap dash around the countryside in order to prevent the cabal from taking over the world.
For most of the book the three aren't together, each taking part in their own adventures, the story revolves through each characters story, with complicated twists and turns.
Cardinal Chang is still my favourite but I'm growing an appreciation of the Doctor and Miss Temple.
It's the mixture of murder, adventure and the fast pace which has kept me occupied, reading well into
Having enjoyed this book's predecessor, The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters, I would not have imagined how much I would dislike and be frustrated by this second chapter in the exploits of Miss Temple, Cardinal Chang, and Doctor Svenson.

Despite being together at the end of Dream Eaters, the protagonists are inexplicably apart at the opening of the novel, leaving the reader to discover in fits and starts where they each are and what they are up to. This denies the reader the pleasure of seeing the
Deeply frustrating. So much mayhem and murder. So many nefarious plots, minor characters with gutteral names, train rides, and close calls. So little character development and plot. And no resolution. I wanted to enjoy it. I enjoyed Glass Books for the most part. But nothing really happens that hasn't happened before 500 pages before. And the characters are not rich enough to keep the story going.
Katie Grainger
I was a big fan of The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters but I waited quite a while before I read the second book. The Dark Volume is good, I was glad to reacquaint myself with the characters I had loved the first time around.

The Dark Volume is a complex novel and it would be impossible to understand if you had not read the first book. I myself struggled a little as I read The Glass Books a fair while ago. The plot is complicated and the three principle characters actually spend very little time
Good book but DEAR LORD when will there be resolution?
Mason Jones
Well, I just finished this one last night. This continues the Victorian-style adventures of the trio of protagonists from the previous books, and sees the return of several of the evil Cabal members who were seemingly dispatched at the end of the last volume. I don't think it gives anything away to mention that a few of those presumed dead reappear through various nefarious means.

This is certainly not as strong as the previous books, let's just get that out of the way now. The mysteries uncovere
This is the second installment of the Miss Temple/Doctor Svenson/Cardinal Chang trilogy, preceded by "The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters". I haven't reviewed said predecessor, but I will. I will simply mention that the first book is definitely better, fully deserving of 5 awesome stars. This one, sadly, received 4 stars simply because the romantic in me was all "Aww" when the fateful kiss arrived in the last bloody pages. But truly it is a mediocre 3-star book.

Sadly, this novel suffers from the
As the 'second' book in a series it's hard to judge this work. It is true I didn't find it as rivoting as the first, and there are plenty of reasons for that. The Glass Books of the Dream-Eaters had a very ephemeral quality to it, a peering into the lives of three people and how the twisted convuleted schemes of a Cabal brought those three together in opposition as allies. This book follows the fall-out from those Allies success, or rather the Cabal's failure. It demonstrates how the mysteries o ...more
Sure, times are hard in the book publishing industry – but is it asking too much to make it as easy as possible for those who buy books to know what they’re in for when they pull out their debit cards?

This month’s example is “The Dark Volume” (Bantam, $26, 508 pages), which is the next installment in Gordon Dahlquist’s “The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters” series. But for that $26, readers don’t get any sort of resolution, and in fact, in the grand tradition of Robert Jordan, at the end of the 5
Go find my review of The Glass Books.... This is pretty much the same. The pacing is better, the show has caught up to the tell a bit and there's more inter-protagonist drama, but this is the same author continuing the story.

That's not a negative, just the way it is. If you enjoyed Glass Books, you'll enjoy the Dark Volume. I did, however I was a bit disappointed that they left the door open for a third one. But the time I got toward the end I was a little over the overblown writing and even MOR
Unfortunately, I found parts of this to be tedious (especially the stuff in the fishing village/Karthe) so it took me a little while to really get into it. There are lots of characters, some of which I kept getting mixed up with others, and that made things confusing at times. I found plot itself to be maybe a little thin, with some unneccessary padding. But I still like the overall weirdness of the premise, as well as the main characters, a whole lot, so I stuck with it. As with "The Glass Book ...more
The original Glass Books of the Dream Eaters – the first book in the series, was initially published as a single volume – not the two volumes commonly seen and reviewed here - the first with a cliffhanger ending, which I hate so much. This was the doing of the second publisher, who split the novel, obviously thinking that a 768 page novel was too much for today's ADD type audiences. Too bad, they screwed that up. Now, with the Dark Volume, what is truly the second book in the series, Dahlquist's ...more
Only a short review as well....

It's sadley not quite as enjoyable as the first book The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters that really took me on a roller coaster ride with the trio's tales of daring-do! Which i highly recommened anyone slightly intrigued should read, as it's well worth the journey!

All starts well with the story/plot continuing post aftermath of the first book & then...... it kinda meanders & at the book is really only a vehicle from the success of the first outing. Ok ther
I enjoyed this book, not quite as much as the first, but still well enough that I was disappointed when I turned the final page and found myself left again at a cliff hanger! I thought that this book would be the end, but apparently I must wait for another book! Like the first book this one was suspenseful and full of intrigue. However, it was less of a mystery than the first book, but some interesting elements of the blue glass are revealed throughout the book.

Although I usually don't like brok
I cannot recommend this book series (or trilogy depending on where you buy them) highly enough. Not only are the story lines highly engrossing and action packed, they are also flooded with detail, not to mention there are several different narrations happening simultaneously, without a hitch.
Leaving off where the Glass Book of The Dream Eaters finished, the book starts Miss Temple, Cardinal Chang, and Dr. Svenson out not entirely whole new adventure, but rather a continued one with a new pace a
A lot happens in this sequel, but much of it doesn't seem all that significant.

The characters take turns pursuing and then running from the sinister members of the Most Inept Cabal Ever. The author sometimes seems to prefer the villains to his heroes, because the protagonists spend more time in polite, awkward conversation with their deadly enemies than they actually do fighting them.

In the beginning of the book, the characters split up in a frustratingly arbitrary way that makes no damn sense
Finished "The Dark Volume" by Gordon Dahlquist. I did not realize this was a sequel to another book! (Such is my curse, it seems.) Not having read the predecessor did not detract from this book much, though. I loved the world he created, and the "science" of the clay and glass. Mr. Dahlquist's prose describes a scene so efficiently that it sometimes takes a couple passes through to really understand all the nuances he has presented. Not to say it is bad - just that I couldn't keep up! He certain ...more
Being a sequel, you really cannot discuss this book without mentioning its predecessor: The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters, in which the reader is introduced to an entire world. There is a fictionalized late 19th century England, with a pseudo Prussian empire, ersatz European political intrigue, and a novel quasi-scientific system of alchemy which functions in the books essentially as magic. So with all this going on, and with some really excellent settings (one character more or less lives in ...more
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Third Installment Coming Soon 1 11 May 25, 2012 06:21PM  
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Gordon Dahlquist, also credited as G.W. Dahlquist, is a novelist and a playwright.
More about Gordon Dahlquist...

Other Books in the Series

The Glass Books (3 books)
  • The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters (Miss Temple, Doctor Svenson, and Cardinal Chang, #1)
  • The Chemickal Marriage (Miss Temple, Doctor Svenson, and Cardinal Chang, #3)
The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters (Miss Temple, Doctor Svenson, and Cardinal Chang, #1) The Different Girl The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters, Volume Two (Miss Temple, Doctor Svenson, and Cardinal Chang #1.2) The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters, Volume One (Miss Temple, Doctor Svenson, and Cardinal Chang #1.1) The Chemickal Marriage (Miss Temple, Doctor Svenson, and Cardinal Chang, #3)

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