Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Blade of Tyshalle” as Want to Read:
Blade of Tyshalle
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Blade of Tyshalle (The Acts of Caine #2)

4.08  ·  Rating Details ·  3,372 Ratings  ·  178 Reviews
Twenty-seven years ago, they said Hari Michaelson didn't have a chance. He was just a loser, a street criminal from a disgraced family. He'd never make anything of himself. They were wrong. He made himself into Caine: Killer. Superstar. Hero . . .


Six years ago, Ma'elkoth--a god of Overworld--held Pallas Ril in his merciless grip. Earth's ruling elite w
ebook, 832 pages
Published December 9th 2008 by Del Rey (first published 2001)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Blade of Tyshalle, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Ashley Don't know, therefore...aliens.

(I have no idea. I had no idea what was going on through the last book and a half. )

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details

If Superman, the Boogeyman, Darth Vader, Conan the Barbarian and Sauron all ganged up to fight Hari “Caine” Michelson...not only would Caine WIN, but none of his attackers would even make it to the after party.

It’s simplyhow it is...Period.No debate, no equivocation, no qualification, no margin for error.

Caine is the mythago-like archetype of indomitably-willed, carnage-causing, badass kickassery. A take-no-prisoners, leave you battered, bloody and beaten force of destruction.

Oct 25, 2012 seak rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
I got a Kindle last year and guess what was my first purchase? You guessed it, Atlas Shrugged! Okay, no, it was this one, Blade of Tyshalle. I was looking forward to it, but it's all but impossible to get in paper form unless you want to pay out the nose. And 10 months is surprisingly a good time for a book I bought to finally make it to my "currently reading" pile.

Because I had such a long wait time between this book and the first in the Acts of Caine, Heroes Die, I had lots of time to read rev
Where the hell can I begin? I'd like to say I'm speechless and drowning in a god-river of awe, but the fact is, I could write twenty-odd pages or more just to expound how much I love this book, and by natural extension of story, Heroes Die.

They're both of one piece, but what really blows my mind is the fact that it's not only as good as the first, but it absolutely refuses to back down and aims for something much, much greater. I'm very afraid that I can't come even remotely close to doing a rev
Oct 29, 2013 Algernon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013

Tyshalle Deathgod is also called the Limiter, and the Divider. Tyshalle himself is the energy of change; he is the outer darkness beyond the edges of organized reality. That's why he's the God of Death: death is the primary change. The big one. Change is, itself, the structure of experience. Think about it: The absence of change is stasis - which is also the absence of experience. Experience is reality. That's what reality is to us; no more, no less. Reality is change. That's all it is. The Bla
Mike (the Paladin)
This is one of a few books I've finished lately that I find a bit hard to rate and even hard to describe. First this book has significant flaws that weren't present (or at least weren't as present) in the first volume of this "series" Heroes Die. So...I'm going to say some slightly negative things about the book AND I'm going to be giving some significant warnings about it. Still please note that I have settled on a 4 star rating. Some books do transcend an "I like it" or "I don't like it" revie ...more
Aug 17, 2012 Jason rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-books, read-2012
5 Stars

“AND EACH HAD his own role to play: the crooked knight defended the part-time goddess; the part-time goddess served the land; the acolytes of dust and ashes fed their master’s hunger.
The dark angel made war.
He answered the call of the crooked knight; he used the part-time goddess to work his will; he named the god of dust and ashes his enemy.”

Blade of Tyshalle is one freaking awesome dark fantasy read that continues the story of the hero Caine/Hari, that some may deem the baddest ass good
Sep 28, 2015 Sumant rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Really a waste of my time, should have stopped reading this book far earlier, but could not take it more after 75% of book and finally took the decision to stop reading it.

I think stover has done a big mistake of including metaphysics with story in this book because clearly he has done a mess of it in this book. I really enjoyed the first book which was full of action from the word go, but this book has people doing disgusting things to each other for the heck of it and metaphysics filler rest o
Two things to say about this:

1) I loved reading a character that was incapable of doing many of the things you expect a character in a fantasy book to do.

2) WTF? I feel like Stover was trying to be a little too clever. The villain, if you can call it a villain, is almost impossible to conceptualize. I found myself constantly rereading passages and being no clearer on what happened than I was the first time through. The fun that the first Caine novel had is almost completely gone.
Troy G
Dec 05, 2010 Troy G rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
This book has been described as better than its prequel "Heroes Die". It may be. But since I read "Heroes Die" first, it felt like much of this book was a retread. The pace of "Heroes Die" was so fast that it didn't leave me room to stop and question plot points, or inconsistencies in the world. With "The Blade of Tyshalle" because I was more familiar with the world I started questioning things.

I appreciate that the focus character isn't a pure hero, but Stover here tried to have it both ways wi
Apr 03, 2016 Jakyro rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I started "Blade of Tyshalle" with the knowledge that not everyone likes this book as much as "Heroes Die". I always thought those people must be wrong and Blade would be just as awesome as "Heroes Die". That one had great writing, amazing characters (Caine!!!), a very intruiging world, a good story throwing you from one action sequence into the next, a lot of blood and gore and a great ending on top of all this. It would be difficult for Blade to match all that, but more of the same would still ...more
Jun 11, 2013 Paintedbear rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Believe it or not, this book has actually helped me in my job as a mentor to teens in a mental health facility. I use the quotes "keep your head down and inch towards daylight" and "we are the sum of our scars" at least once a week to show how determination and hard work can help achieve goals, and that you never "get over" bad things that shape you as a person.

For an actual book review, here's this: I love the concept of a world we routinely invade for entertainment. I love the dark gritty vio
Feb 18, 2010 Donna rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, sci-fi
The book opens with a bit of a prequel about Hari's time at the Actor's training academy. Then we catch up with his more recent life, working as the San Fransisco studio head after the events of Heroes Die. When one of his actors is kidnapped, Hari is shown the disastrous consequences of a plot to control Overworld's resources. When he insists on taking action, the forces that oppose him set him on a path back to Overworld and his alter-ego, Caine.

This is a more ambitious story than that of the
Roger Eschbacher
The second book of Matthew Stover's "Caine" series, "Blade of Tyshalle" is equally as entertaining and well-written as "Heroes Die". This time around Hari must deal with an even more potent array of foes, both old and new, who have conspired to completely, and I do mean COMPLETELY ruin his life and those of the ones he loves. Their collective goal is to break Caine and make him suffer to the point of despair before killing him. If they were dealing with an ordinary man they might be justified in ...more
I enjoyed the Hari/Caine parts of the story, also the parts involving the man elf Deliann. BUT there is a hell of a lot of esoteric bullshit in this 738 page book which required some extensive skimming (perhaps I'm just shallow?) As Caine would say: '..yadda, yadda, yadda, horseshit.'

"What if it's Hari Michaelson who is the fictional character? What if the middle-aged paraplegic is just a role that Caine plays, so he can get along on Earth?"
Mar 09, 2014 Monica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was just as good as the first in the series. It is brutal, engaging, and one of the most exciting speculative fiction reads of all time. I didn't give it a 5/5 rating because sometimes it had a little too much violence for my tastes, but I will definitely be reading the third book in the series when I get the time.
Sandra Grauschopf
As a follow-up to the absolutely outstanding "Heroes Die", I found "Blade of Tyshalle" to be disappointing. In attempting to be about huge issues like the clashes of gods, it lost its human element, and thus, much of its interest. It's a worthwhile read, but a big step down from "Heroes Die."
Feb 18, 2013 Lark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hari finds himself in a comfortable failure. His life after his last adventure doesn't seem to have given him much happiness. And even though he "got the girl" and saved the world and was promoted to Administrator, his life isn't peachy and a happily ever after. On the contrary, it's pretty crappy the way he still fights with Shanna, the falling worth of the Studio under his administration, and especially his useless legs that makes him incapable of even being remotely similar to Caine - and he ...more
Apr 20, 2016 Ints rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pirms pusotra gada pēc grāmatas Heroes Die izlasīšanas es optimistiski prognozēju, ka arī turpmākie Kaina piedzīvojumi būs ne sliktāki par pirmo. No otrās grāmatas lasīšanas mani nedaudz atturēja informācija, ka šī esot vairāk tāda filozofiska. Ja grāmatu nosauc par filozofisku, tad ir tikai divas iespējas. Pirmā- tā tiešām ir filozofiska. Otrā – sižets ir tik samudžināts, ka lāga nevar saprast, kas ir kas un beigās attopies ar (nosacītu) kladi, kura pilna ar citātiem, bet ar minimālu sapratni p ...more
Jul 11, 2012 April rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Stover’s kickass Caine character, who we first heard about in Heroes Die, returns in this thriller- and boy am I happy he does! To explain the scope of Stover’s encompassing science fantasy worldbuilding would take too long here, so a quick recap:
- On Earth, Caine is really Hari Michaelson, an Actor- turned- Administrator who made his acting career on Overworld, an alternate Earth-type world;
- Other Actors, like Caine, have gone to Overworld in secret, seeking adventure and using a kind of virtu
3.5 stars

This book alternated between being absolutely amazing and boring me to the point where I wanted to stop reading. I loved Heroes Die, but the sequel definitely has a different flavor to it. While there are many excellent Caine moments, the pacing is much slower and there is a lot more in the way of philosophical ramblings and symbolic vignettes.

What I liked:
1. I absolutely LOVED the first section of the book, which is a prequel of Hari when he is first training to be an actor. It really
Sep 27, 2014 Vivek rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
warning: Spoilers ahead.

As I read the book, I was struck by how many recent SciFi movies have dealt with similar themes.

Like the Matrix: we are introduced to a sentient entity which controls humanity. The difference here is that instead of an alien, the entity is just a manifestation of our greed and the damage we are doing to the planet.

Like Avatar, here too, Earth has run out of resources and enterprising corporations decide to start mining other planets: displacing its current inhabitants fo
Feb 13, 2014 Darren rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Neil Gaiman, in Stories: All-New Tales says that the four most important words when it comes to story are "And then what happened?" I rate this book three stars not because I liked it, according to the Goodreads rubric, but because if I could I would rate it both five stars and yet just one. There is a whole chapter dedicated to Caine's memories of various scents of shit he has smelled, over the years. The chapter before it? It was about shit, also. With a side of gangrene and sexual extortion. ...more
Chris Hawks
Nov 29, 2010 Chris Hawks rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned, favorites, reviewed

The sequel to "Heroes Die", "Blade of Tyshalle" takes place seven years later, and everything about it is double what its predecessor was: Hari's opponents, both on Earth and Overworld, are bigger and more terrifying; the depths to which the protagonists fall are lower, the stakes higher. The plot is twice as convoluted. As unthinkable as it seems, the violence is cranked up a couple of notches -- reaching the point of distrubing, at times. And the philoso
Apr 25, 2009 Aaron rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who like awesomeful novels (and don't mind gratuitous violence and/or sci-fi)
One of the great modern fantasy novels, Blade of Tyshalle shines incandescently above the rest. Powerful, triumphant, literary, speculative, gory, gripping--plug in your book-cover review quotes, for this one deserves them all. 800 pages of pure awesomeness, Stover's Caine shines even more in the face of complementary characters far better than those in the previous Caine novel, Heroes Die. A couple 20-page sections in particular are some of the best I've ever read.

And he thinks the eventual se
Христо Блажев
Една планета не е достатъчна…:

Пробих! Когато забия в някоя мащабна книга, колкото и да е добра, това започва да ми тежи, да ме напряга – дори любимите “Доброжелателните” на Джонатан Лител и “Шантарам” на Грегъри Дейвид Робъртс трябваше да оставям за по няколко дни настрана, сега същото се случи и с “Острието на Тишал” на Матю Удринг Стоувър. Просто този текст не може да бъде преброден бързо и с лекота – спрямо първата част, “Героите умират” (вижте текста
Jacqueline Wagenstein
„Острието на Тишал“, книга 2 от култовата поредица на Матю Стоувър, отново ни пренася в Отвъдие – един свят на магия, храбри битки и фантастични създания. Спомняте си Каин, Острието на Тишал, страховит убиец на владетели и благородници, злодеи и герои, който в родния си свят е суперзвездата Хари Майкълсън. Преди шест години Ма’елКот – бог на Отвъдие – задържа Палас Рил в безмилостната си хватка и Каин се закле да я спаси. Сега Хари Майкълсън е единственият човек, който стои между бездушните корп ...more
*Absorbed in Countless Worlds*
Wow! This easily is the best book ive read this year so far. If not the best in years. Is it dark? It is. As dark as it could get. Is it full of explicit language? Sure, it is. Is Caine a waste of a motherfucker, in attitude , habit and action? Indeed, he is. Does all that make up to a dull story in a lame worldbuilding? It definitely does not. This ones just excellent, i lack words to describe... Believe me or not: In all its dark, vicious and frightening , brutal setting there is so much LOVE ...more
Emily (BellaGrace)
I really loved the first book, but this one is much weaker - it gets a 3 star rating instead of 2 star, just because I liked Caine and Kris Hanson. It starts out well, but then it just spirals down into the ridiculous and unbelievable. The last 40% of the book is especially bad. It's mostly filled with metaphysical and philosophical nonsense, and you will have no idea what is going on half the time. Everyone is living inside someone else's body. Everyone is literally crawling around in shit and ...more
Richard Guion
The general consensus is that this sequel to Heroes Die is very different, and I have to agree. The first novel was about the nature of heroes, entertainment, but had a plot that built Caine into a hero. This sequel is about deconstructing the hero. I found it to be similar to Frank Miller's Daredevil story arc, Born Again. Caine is taken down a hole so dark that he is transformed, perhaps not for the better. I enjoyed this somewhat, it had some great moments, other parts that I had to skip thro ...more
Veselin Nikolov
Not a bad book, but so many letters...

The difference between this and the last one is like the difference between 'The Hobbit' and LOTR. About half of the book is JRRM style torture porn, but it's so sci-fi that doesn't feel real. At some point you stop noticing it and just want to learn what happens next.

Giving 5 stars for the highly unlikely fantasy world and the awesome mix of sorcerers and sci-fi special forces, 5 stars for the philosophy, 1 star for the torture, and 1 for the length. Averag
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Thousandfold Thought (The Prince of Nothing, #3)
  • Corvus (The Macht, #2)
  • The Price of Spring (Long Price Quartet, #4)
  • Blood and Bone (Malazan Empire #5)
  • Necessary Evil (Milkweed Triptych, #3)
  • Soldiers Live (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #9)
  • The Straits of Galahesh (Lays of Anuskaya, #2)
  • The River of Shadows (The Chathrand Voyage, #3)
  • The Book of Transformations (Legends of the Red Sun, #3)
  • The Iron Jackal (Tales of the Ketty Jay, #3)
Matthew Woodring Stover is an American fantasy and science fiction author. He is perhaps best known for his Star Wars novels -- Traitor, Shatterpoint, Revenge of the Sith and Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor. He has also published several pieces of original work, such as Heroes Die, which Stover described as 'a piece of violent entertainment that is a meditation on violent entertainment'. ...more
More about Matthew Woodring Stover...

Other Books in the Series

The Acts of Caine (4 books)
  • Heroes Die (The Acts of Caine, #1)
  • Caine Black Knife (The Acts of Caine, #3)
  • Caine's Law (The Acts of Caine, #4)

Share This Book

“It's not always easy to distinguish between existentialism and a bad mood.” 79 likes
“A tale is told of twin boys born to different mothers.
One is dark by nature, the other light. One is rich, the other poor. One is harsh, the other gentle. One is forever youthful, the other old before his time.
One is mortal.
They share no bond of blood or sympathy, but they are twins nonetheless.
They each live without ever knowing that they are brothers.
They each die fighting the blind god.”
More quotes…