The White Luck Warrior (Aspect-Emperor, #2)
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The White Luck Warrior (Aspect-Emperor #2)

4.09 of 5 stars 4.09  ·  rating details  ·  1,649 ratings  ·  70 reviews
A score of years after he first walked into the histories of men, Anasûrimbor Kellhus rules all the three seas, the first true Aspect-Emperor in a thousand years.

As Kellhus and his Great Ordeal march ever farther into the perilous wastes of the Ancient North, Esmenet finds herself at war with not only the Gods, but her own family as well. Achamian, meanwhile, leads his own...more
Trade Paperback, 595 pages
Published May 5th 2011 by Orbit (first published April 14th 2011)
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Community Reviews

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Terry
So, volume two of the “Aspect Emperor” series has come to a close and so far R. Scott Bakker still proves that he has the chops to pull off a multi-volume epic fantasy that not only uses the standard tropes in new and interesting ways, but that gives his characters depth, darkness, and complexity and does so with prose that is always enjoyable and sometimes downright exhilarating to read. I don’t think that I really *like* any of his characters (though Achamian, and to a lesser extent Mimara and...more
Terence
May 20, 2011 Terence rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: Epic fantasy fans
Shelves: sf-fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Neil Pearson
I'm not sure if Bakker was being meta but this book really feels like the oft quoted "slog of slogs". While "the judging eye" felt pacier than the previous books, this one seemed to reset the balance. I think this is partly due to the chapters being very long meaning we only drop in on Momemn's story 3/4 times throughout the book.
Negatives aside though there are still some great moments. Cleric is one of the most tragic "elves" I've read about and the Quirri storyline feels like a fantasy versio...more
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An Overwhelming experience. Its shocking how this, a work of words rises above, transcends words.

With this series Bakker has become Tolkiens lost, maniacally, diabolically perverted, philosophical twin. If Tolkien was the creator of fantasy as it stands today, Bakker is its proud defiler. This man is pure evil to write what he writes and still command the adoration and awe of the reader, in-spite of the disgust, in-spite of the awareness of the mutilation.
Therese Arkenberg
Fifty pages in, I realized I had come to approach this as a horror story rather than epic fantasy, as if I was reading Stephen King or the Lovecraft Unbound anthology. In the opening chapters, Bakker succeeds in making forests scary. Maybe if I'd seen the Blair Witch project or played that Slenderman game longer, this would not be news to me, but I grew up among friendly, sunlit trees. The same monumental gloom that pervades the Nonman fortress our intrepid heroes (or greed-driven antiheroes, ei...more
Corey James Soper
I always find books like this difficult to review, because I acknowledge whilst I enjoyed it, most people would find it pretty tiresome. The premise, of Neitzschean superman let loose in a medieval Near East with a singular mission to prevent The Apocalypse may raise an eyebrow or two, and when it comes to the super-powers of the Anasurimbor Bakker resorts to a fair amount of hand-waving and obfuscation. It works because it does, and like the Believer-Kings, you just have to accept it. We take i...more
Phil
Here's a extract from my review, full link: http://afantasyreader.blogspot.ca/2012/04/white-luck-warrior-review.html

When I read the Prince of Nothing several years ago, I was awestruck at the dimension of the characters, the depth of the plot, the ingenious, tangible and inflated world building and the philosophical/anthropological exploration found in the protagonists insights while they marched to war. I read that this last aspect (mostly so in the author's case) is seen for some as an author
...more
Grack21
Mind = blown.
Rosanna
The originality is back!! For those disappointed in Bakker’s previous book, The Judging Eye—due to its complete knockoff of Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring— Bakker more than redeems himself with The White Luck Warrior. Only Bakker can get away with combining the extremely bizarre and grotesque, while remaining philosophical and intellectually stimulating. This book has it all: an evil, murderous child infatuated with his mother, sranc who couple with the dead in the most gruesome way imagi...more
Horus Odenthal
Ich glaube, dass sich hiermit meine Wege und die meines bisherigen Lieblings-Fantasy-Autors R. Scott Bakker trennen. "The White-Luck-Warrior" ist ein unerträglicher selbstgefälliger Sermon. Bis jetzt liest sich das Buch wie ein How-not-to-do-it. Und die Erkenntnisse, die ich bisher aus diesem Buch in dieser Hinsicht ziehen konnte, waren mir schon hinlänglich bekannt.
Es zeigt sich deutlich, dass Bakker an den ersten Bänden Jahre feilen konnte. Das ist deutlich mit zuviel Selbstgefälligkeit zu sch...more
Goran Zidar
Let me preface this review by saying upfront that I really enjoyed the previous books by this author. The three books from the first series, and the first book of this series, are among my favourite books. I found the world building and the characterisation to be excellent and I was very much looking forward to reading this book.

With that behind me I am very disappointed in the result.

For me the entire novel exists to get the characters from point A to point B in the largest number of words pos...more
David Spencer
I wish I could give this 6 stars. Some of the revelations in this were satisfying confirmations of some of my wide-eyed, mouth-agape suspicions from earlier books, and some blew me away to a degree that had me nearly tearing out hair at the root, my face flying into versions of the masks of ancient theatre with a speed and force that nearly turned them from Greek Smiles and Despairs into Glasgow Smiles and Despairs. I can't wait for The Unholy Consult, and I think I'm going to pre-order it so it...more
Joy
This remindes me of the Dune books in some ways. Very complex plot, with much of the explanation of why and how hinted at rather than spelled out. Intellectual concepts and not an easy read. Expect to take your time. The protagonist is still not clearly good or evil.
Jason
There is much to like and much to dislike in this series, much and more of it in this single volume. WLW may be the best of both trilogies.

The story flips back and forth between three main threads. Achamian and Mimara's remains my favorite, and the tragic Nonman Cleric featured heavily there. They face another epic danger from the ancient past, a part which stood toe-to-toe in quality with Achamian's final confrontation in the first trilogy.

Esmenet's seat of power continues to sway in the heigh...more
Anthony Ryan
Epic fantasy through the prism of Nietzschian philosophy, all rendered in compelling but exquisite prose. Highly recommended.
T. Edmund
First of all - I rate Bakker's The Darkness that Comes before as one of my favourite trilogies of all time.

And I have to say when Judging Eye came out I was most disillusioned. Where D.T.C.B was populated with strong characters and forboding, The Aspect Emperor seems bogged down in the petty factitions that previously formed the background of Bakker's writing but wasn't the key focus.

White Luck Warrior does improve on the Judging Eye however. More of significance happens, each of the three stor...more
Jon
Bakker's 2nd book in the Aspect Emperor trilogy and 5th in his Three Seas narrative ranked right up there with the preceding 4 installments. The beauty in these stories is Bakker's reinterpretation of traditional fantasy (and even science fiction) archetypes; infusing them with philosophical questions & themes, modern political theory, and most importantly a book full of wonderfully flawed and fully real characters in a surreal, hostile but human world. This was the first series to really ma...more
Ruth
C2011: Using an oft repeated phrase in the book, I really found this to be “the Slog of Slogs”. My grasp on this series is now at an all time low. The book is described as gritty – I would describe it as bleak, “meticulous detail” – translates to mind numbingly conversations/narrative/explanations difficult to understand (for me). As an example of the interesting phraseology “We are legion! What you call your soul is nothing but a confusion, an inability! A plurality that cannot count the moment...more
Justin Evans
My review for the first volume in this series is currently hosting an in-depth discussion of Bakker's work by people who read him more closely than I am. My reviews of the other volumes are apparently completely unread. Maybe, unlike Bakker, my work is not improving as it goes. This volume has a much better pace to it- the cuts between story-lines are very well handled, the battle scenes are, in general, more readable (slightly less "and then the [insert four pages of weird tribal names you will...more
Bruce
This latest chapter of Scott Bakker's increasingly epic saga was for me a slight letdown following the excellence of The Judging Eye. That's not to say the book wasn't very good (thus the 4 star rating), or didn't move the story along to where it needed to be (it did).

The White Luck Warrior wasn't the most difficult read in the series (the first volume still takes the cake on that front), but it was certainly the slowest. I found that the brisk, intense pace of the last two books was often brou...more
Alan
I was very conflicted when reading this book. I have loved reading the first four books, and had to wait three weeks after finishing this one before I could make sense of my feelings about the book.

This book has, as usual, some amazing quotes to ponder and reflect on. These books are as much books of philosophy as they are fantasy stories. However, in this book more than all of the others combined, I kept getting the impression that Bakker was constantly repeating himself, going in circles and c...more
William Langford
White Luck Warrior is the 2nd Book in the Aspect Emporer trilogy and the 5th book overall in the Prince of Nothing Series by R. Scott Bakker. White Luck Warrior picks up where The Judging Eye left off. Achamian, his "step daughter" Mimara are still travelling with the mercenary band the Skin Eaters on their seemingly endless slog to Sauglish. Anasurimbor Kelhus and the Great Ordeal travel further North fighting battles against endless waves of Sranc in search of a showdown with the consult. Esme...more
Robin
So far, torn on the book. Moves much faster than any of his previous works in either the original PON trilogy or in the Aspect-Emperor trilogy.

Weaknesses so far, and this is petty, is the misuse of 'penultimate'.

Also, I find it odd so many of the characters share the same views of the world, unless I am misreading (always possible). Would like to have seen the other characters motivated by opposing ideologies that are as fleshed out as the ones Kellhus promotes, and seems to be widely embraced...more
Keith
The latest volume in R Scott Bakker's Prince of Nothing and Aspect Emperor connected series is stunningly good. Bakker's skills keep improving, and the world of this series, it's revelations and it's complexity keep getting deeper and more mind-blowing with every installment in the series. This novel is so good, it even manages to make it's preceding volume, The Judging Eye, better with what it adds to the plots and characters that were introduced in it.

Kellhus has to be the most intriguing char...more
Phrynne
Ths first half of this book was only 4 stars but the second half brought it home to a definite 5. Kellhus is one of the best book characters ever and I still have no idea whether he is our hero or the baddy! Consequently I do not know about any of the other characters either. Is the White Luck Warrior going to be a saviour or an assassin - or both? Is Akka ever going to actually achieve anything? And what about that evil little boy sitting in a half empty palace eating dead bodies (quickly while...more
Rachel
Certainly far better than the first book in this go-round (which I found massively disappointing). I now have questions about the next installment whose answers I actually care about, and the ending is a corker on two of three fronts - on the third front, we just sort of end. Bakker made up a lot of ground here - I went from actively despising one of his protagonists (Sorweel) to rooting for him - but I still miss the intimacy of the first trilogy. I don't feel like I know any of the characters...more
Brendan
I had complained of The Judging Eye that things were too glossed-over in some plotlines and that others were too much of a standard fantasy adventure. Not so with this one. It continues all the same plotlines, but in ways that are more character-oriented (and more devastating for those characters).

It still doesn't reach the dizzying heights of The Darkness That Comes Before, which at times felt like a revelation for the fantasy subgenre, but it's a large and assured step back in that direction.
Liviu
Disappointing; it's probably me moving on beyond the kind of book this represents but I found it dull, boring and pretentiously empty; all the talk about kings, faith, all the philosophizing for which S. Bakker is renown just made me yawn and I couldn't give a fig for any of the characters of the book; if the No God would come and sweep them into history more the better; a series drop and I kind of regret it since i really loved the first trilogy - though I have not re-read it recently so I am n...more
Ketsugami
I feel like this series is losing me. This one eventually gets really interesting, but not until maybe two-thirds of the way along did I feel really drawn to come back to it. The second trilogy seems to lack the focus that centering on Kellhus provided the first set of books; we have a similarly varied set of POVs, but here they're not specifically arranged around doing something, so some of them feel kind of pointless. In particular there's a whole Esmenet/Kelmomas plotline that seems to be wan...more
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How do u think kellhus will defeat the whiteluck warrior? 3 15 Apr 08, 2013 05:25PM  
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Richard Scott Bakker, who writes as R. Scott Bakker and as Scott Bakker, is a novelist whose work is dominated by a large series informally known as the The Second Apocalypse which Bakker began developing whilst as college in the 1980s. The series was originally planned to be a trilogy, with the first two books entitled The Prince of Nothing and The Aspect-Emperor. However, when Bakker began writi...more
More about R. Scott Bakker...
The Darkness That Comes Before (The Prince of Nothing, #1) The Warrior Prophet (The Prince of Nothing, #2) The Thousandfold Thought (The Prince of Nothing, #3) The Judging Eye (Aspect-Emperor, #1) Neuropath

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“Any fool can see the limits of seeing, but not even the wisest know the limits of knowing. Thus is ignorance rendered invisible, and are all Men made fools.” 4 likes
“We belittle what we cannot bear. We make figments out of fundamentals, all in the name of preserving our own peculiar fancies. The best way to secure one's own deception is to accuse others of deceit.” 4 likes
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