Venugopal's Reviews > The Crippled God

The Crippled God by Steven Erikson
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M 50x66
's review
Mar 18, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: high-fantasy
Read in March, 2011 — I own a copy

Like most Malazan fans I started on The Crippled God with high expectations. (Understandably, considering that I had diligently plodded my way through 8 Malazan books and 3 Esselmont Novels while waiting for this - the Grand Finale).

But as the pages went by I started getting a bad feeling about the book. At some point it dawned on me that the author had just done a volte-face (view spoiler). While I certainly liked Erikson's habit of keeping things vague, and having an evolving perspective this was a bit too much to digest. It was a long step from, say, the way he rewrote the T'lan Imass - Jaghut wars (initially a fight for Imass freedom, then later adding the Jaghut perspective and finally mentioning Olar Ethil's role). Particularly after having read Stonewielder I found this latest change very vexing. (view spoiler)

In the meantime, several other characters who were hyped up and would have been expected to be unbelievably powerful prove to be ... considerably less formidable than imagined. The same might well be said of several storylines that seemed to have great potential, but suffered ends that were anything but epic. (view spoiler)

The only real exception that I found to this general trend was the Kharkanas-Lightfall arc where the Shake, led by Yedan Derryg, defend the First Shore from approaching hordes of Tiste Liosan. It also contained what I found to be the best part of the book (view spoiler)

The nail in the coffin though was the repeated instances of logical inconsistency. (view spoiler)

But despite everything, the epic scope of the book has not changed, nor has the care with which the author draws together a dozen storylines into a single convergence (well, to be honest 3 convergences).

All in all, despite the sparks of brilliance, it was disappointing to see that this, the Final Chapter in the Malazan Book of the Fallen, lacked the brilliance that Erikson had shown in earlier works like Toll the Hounds or Midnight Tides. So I give it a 3/5.
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