The Towers of the Sunset
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The Towers of the Sunset (The Saga of Recluce #2)

3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  5,413 ratings  ·  70 reviews
Return now to the world of Recluce in The Towers of the Sunset

At the publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied.
ebook, 368 pages
Published July 15th 1992 by Tor Books (first published 1992)
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Jayaprakash Satyamurthy
This is a significant volume in the Recluce saga, going several generations back in time to witness the founding of Recluce as a bastion of Order amidst Chaotic or indifferent nations. It begins well enough with poetic language that is a step or two above anything in The Magic Of Recluce (although the cod-Biblical language we are treated to at one point is cringe-inducing as are the many song lyrics interspersed, although not as totally lacking any attempt at actual lyricism as the rather dull p...more
Ben Babcock
It's been almost two years since I re-read The Magic of Recluce. I consider the Recluce saga among the "formative fantasy series" of my youth. I associate the word "Recluce" with memories of being curled up in a massive armchair in the living room, rain streaming down the windows outside, cradling a massive 600- or 800-page hardcover book in my hands. That was the life.

With The Towers of Sunset, Modesitt returns to the Recluce saga in prequel form: this is the founding of Recluce by Creslin and...more
Dec 30, 2010 Mark rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who liked the first Recluce novel.
Shelves: fantasy
“The Towers of the Sunset” is the second book of the Recluce saga. However, instead of depicting events that occur subsequent to the ending of the first book, it jumps back in time to before the island of Recluce was established. Overall, it's a good read if you liked Modesitt’s first novel.

The Plot

There are two kinds of societies in Modesitt's world, ones that respect "The Legend" and ones that don't. What "the Legend" exactly is isn't spelled out in the book, although some "quotes" from the a...more
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Alexander Sprague
While many people comment on what place this book is chronologically, Anyone who is looking at this should realize that the author strongly suggest you read them in order of publication.

I liked this book for a lot of reasons, the first being that it made the world that contains Recluse seem real, it has a history and religion that can be explored later. The system for magic was expanded upon, and the events of the first book, even though they were in the future, seem more clear and epic with the...more
This book was a little confusing, not as charming as its predecessor, and written in the present tense the whole way through.

The first few pages made absolutely no sense at all, although once they were clarified the beginning was the most exciting part of the story.

The rest had a lot of action, but mostly all the same action: the island is attacked, Creslin runs towards the action as quickly as possible, shows his boss swordplay moves, calls storms as violently as possible and in the process mes...more
David Matteri
I appreciate the intricate political intrigue and system of magic used by the peoples of this fantasy world, but there were times that the story seemed to drag due to rather large exposition and the logistics of running an island kingdom. I also liked the central themes of sex, power, and control and how they related to all the peoples of this world. One thing I did not care for, though, was the relationship between Creslin and Megaera because both characters made bone-headed decisions when it c...more
Eric Moreno
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
It has been such a long time since I read The Magic of Recluse the first book in the Recluse saga. With book 2 it takes the reader back to the making of Recluse. I don't remember now if the first book was written in the same style as this book or not. It difficult to getting into the story. It wasn't until about page 80 or so that I finally discovered myself "lost" in the book. Usually, this happens by the first 10 - 15 pages. The conversations within the story are very disjointed and sometimes...more
Connie Jasperson
One of my favorite books of all time is The Towers of the Sunset by L.E. Modesitt Jr. First Published in 1992, it was for me a watershed book, introducing me to the world of Recluce. Though it is the second installment in the series, it is a stand alone book and is a prequel to the classic, The Magic of Recluce. I am a huge fan of Modesitt's style. He writes with an economy of words, and yet you are drawn into his world, to the exclusion of everything else.

The Blurb:
Okay, there is no blurb. Thi...more
Richard Tran
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I think, straight off, it's pretty important to note that Towers is not as good, enjoyable, fun, interesting or well-written as The Magic of Recluce. That's rather harsh, but it's definitely not as engaging a read. We pass on Lerris for the chronologically-earlier Creslin, a silver-haired young man destined to be a pawn in his mother's game of politics. Deft with blade, skilled with instrument and reasonably attractive, he's more likeable than Lerris, but just as blinkered with his world-view. Y...more
Aug 11, 2013 Matthew rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: die hard fantasy fans only
Second book in this series. It was ok. I tend to be a big fan of the fantasy genre but this particular author just doesn't do it for me. I abandoned a book of his previously which is something I rarely do. I was able to finish this one but I doubt I will pick up the remainder of the series and I would be hard pressed to read anything further by this author.

The series takes place in a world called Recluce. There are a lot of books in the series but none of them are related beyond the fact that th...more
Keilani Ludlow
Just reread after several years. I really like this series. It's odd because the author really skipped around chronologically as he wrote the books, but it makes things interesting. The land is great. Two kinds of magic, chaos and order. Chaos is evil, order is good, but if you keep reading further in the series you see another side to both. Either way, the main character always comes slowly to recognizing their abilities and developing them, and then of course has to defeat the bad guys. I love...more
I loved The Magic of Recluce and found this sequel disappointing.

Taken on its own the book was worth reading, but barely.

I do intend to contiue with the series because I found the first book superb and I have enjoyed 9 other books by this author.

I found Creslin's character to be inconsistent with order mastery, and the conflict between order mastery and Creslin's dissatisfied, confrontational, and heedless pursuit of short term goals left me malcontent.
If you enjoyed the first book of Recluce then keep on reading.
It remains entertaining enough and provides a lot of breadth to create a world, story and philosophy.
As in the first book, the concepts of chaos and order dropped into the story of a young prince, Creslin, with magical powers of order and trained to be a a swordsman (a sword is an instrument of death, and thus labeled as chaotic.)

Creslin tries to escape his fate on multiple levels, and engages on a journey to find himself and be his o...more
Creslin is eventually engaged (not his choice) to Megeara and runs away while traveling to her city. He wanders and is caught by both Chaos Magicians but is aided by Order Wizards and escapes. Eventually he is forced to band with fiancee for both of their protections.

The first half was very meandering in the journey. The lack of clear direction or aim made it seem a little slow. The second half is marked by Megaera's treatment of Creslin. Although she was mean, I can understand why she acted th...more
A tough read for me. Although, ultimately I enjoyed the story and I did like the main character Creslin, the style of writing was very jarring. The author did not write this story with a shortage of details in regards to surroundings and the day to day movements of our characters (such as reminding us every couple of pages exactly in what manner the person walked into town that day), however the lack of flow with regard to the story line (plot) and the interactions between the characters was vag...more
The second book of Modesitt's saga. I am starting to think I don't like his writing style. I feel like it is just so dang slow. The slowness really doesn't add to the characters' development either. I like the idea of the world he has created, but I hate that I can read the book one day, and don't really feel motivated to read it the next.
Greg Strandberg
I really liked this series, and I think it starts to get going with Book 2 here.

See, I have a feeling many fantasy authors write that first book, maybe with the idea there'll be another one (or 10), but just not sure all the same.

When The Magic of Recluse really took off in '92, Modesitt had the permission to do his series.

I read about 6 of them, and they're great. I love the aspects of carpentry that are discussed, as well as the unique magic system that drains properties and such.

Plus you have...more
All of Modesitt's books are 60% travel, with the protagonist eating dried fruit, hard cheese, and harder biscuits. The first half of this book is no diffeent, but the second half breaks the mold, as the protagonist instead spends his time building a new country from a desert land. Modesitt's books also are characterized by battles that last no more than a paragraph or two, as does this one. Additioally, this book follows the Modesitt pattern of the protagonist getting headaches and worse for usi...more
This book started slow for me. It seemed chopping and disconnected. After 80 pages, I was almost ready to put it down and try again later. But then it got much better. Perhaps it's because I am used to Modesitt's later works when he has more experience as a story teller. Whatever, I am glad that I kept going. This novel tells the beginnings of Recluce as the haven for the Order Magicians. Tells it well. After 80 pages, I was having trouble idenifying with the characters. By the end of the novel,...more
This is the 5th Recluce book as chronology goes and it chronicles the founding of the isle itself as a "powerhouse", the destruction of Westwind and the fulfillment of Ryba's prophecy regarding that

It is also the weakest Recluce novel I read with a telegraphed plot and un-engaging characters, though it was enough of a page turner to keep reading it, but it shows its lack of subtlety with villains being villainous, heroes being heroic and destined for greatness and one another and the whole caboo...more
Overall I liked it though perhaps a tad less than The Magic Of Recluce. There were some minor irritations such as finding Creslin, the main character, to be very similar in many aspects to Lerris from the first book. The love/hate relationship between Creslin and Magaera also bordered on the melodramatic on several occasions. Nothing too serious.
Modesitt still works very slowly, spinning his tale with great attention to detail and mundane matters.
Unusually enough, The Towers of Sunset is writte...more
Its a good book but it can be hard to follow sometimes. The author tends to start chapters without letting the reader know who they are following. He jumps around so much that it can be hard to determine who you are following. the other thing about this book is that it doesn't follow the original characters at all so you have to relearn all the characters. I would still recommend this book though. Its one of those books that could be kind of boring for those who where looking to hear about the c...more
David Colpitts
these books are not as good as i remember. still love the concept though. separate unrelated but connecting stories in the same universe
An entertaining first-half with daring escapes, solid-feeling worldbuilding and a growing sense of impending doom for an interesting and sympathetic character is tripped up by a second-half burdened with a romantic conflict that takes far too long to resolve and a hero so powerful there's never any reason to doubt he'll have his way. Readable and fun, and enough of the good stuff in the first part to justify wading through the second, even if the second half has no real surprises for the attenti...more
Jeremy Preacher
This is the book that made me almost give up on Recluce before I started. It's written in present tense, which is true of many of the books in the series, but is particularly jarring here. Creslin's a bit of a cipher, when he's not whining, and Megaera only stops whining to throw a tantrum. The worldbuilding is scanty, and Creslin is so powerful he sucks all of the drama out of the action scenes. There are a couple of nice moments, but on the whole this is my least favorite of all the Recluce no...more
Simple yet fun, thats what summarizes the recluce books. I did like that concept of chaos and order, and as far as I remember these books have rather pacifist protagonists. You shan't be stunned or provoked to deep thought, but you WILL be left with that warm, fuzzy feeling by the end of it all. In this installment (which is the second book I tink, but chronologically first) you get a lovestory, boy meets girl, or in this case thrust into marriage, hate turns into love, boy discovers himself. Ne...more
This was a very good series, explored both aspects of Order and Chaos, and ended in a big circle. Beginning with the exploration of the inhabitation of the island of Recluse,and the exploration of the Black side of Chaos, as well as the Grey Wizards, then to the fall of the Angels, the alien people who fall from the sky and become a dominate force on the countries they enhabit, then ending with the exploration of the white side of Order.
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L. E. (Leland Exton) Modesitt, Jr. is an author of science fiction and fantasy novels. He is best known for the fantasy series The Saga of Recluce. He graduated from Williams College in Massachusetts, lived in Washington, D.C. for 20 years, then moved to New Hampshire in 1989 where he met his wife. They relocated to Cedar City, Utah in 1993.

He has worked as a Navy pilot, lifeguard, delivery boy, u...more
More about L.E. Modesitt Jr....
The Magic of Recluce (The Saga of Recluce #1) The Magic Engineer (The Saga of Recluce #3) The Death of Chaos (The Saga of Recluce #5) The Order War (The Saga of Recluce #4) Imager (Imager Portfolio, #1)

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