Queldroma's Reviews > Under Heaven

Under Heaven by Guy Gavriel Kay
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's review
Jan 28, 2011

really liked it
Read in December, 2010

Great Book. A finely woven silk tapestry full of holes and thin spots. The book definitely has some flaws but Kay wove a good tale despite not fleshing out some of the details. The story reads and feels like an epic story but condensed both in size and in details. To compare I recently finished the last Wheel Of Time book which would be the 12th or 13th, a story which the author died before finishing. This book could have been a two to three book epic if it flowed correctly and more of the details were conveyed not assumed. Under Heaven reads like the cliff notes of major series like Wheel of Time crammed into one book. I would not be surprised if Kay had an outline for a major series written but no time or contract to properly deliver a 3 book epic. Even so however it is finely woven story with intricate plot lines and something for everyone. Literally, the book seems as if it is going one way/style then loops around to become a different type of book. (mild SPOILER)First it starts a feudal intrigue style, then flips to a fantasy when the dead come to his aid, forgets that immediately for a journey/intrigue, then a political court drama, the list goes on and on always flowing a ebbing in different directions. In summary, the book is a great tale that has been shortened for some reason and not quite fleshed out. If you are momentarily tired of tales that seem to go on forever (Dune/Wheel Of Time/etc)it is a nice respite in the epic category.

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