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(Conqueror #5)

4.44  ·  Rating details ·  10,845 ratings  ·  523 reviews
From a young scholar to one of history's most powerful warriors, this novel tells the story of Kublai Khan - an extraordinary man who should be remembered alongside Julius Caesar, Alexander the Great and Napoleon Bonaparte as one of the greatest conquerors the world has ever known. ...more
Paperback, 546 pages
Published October 27th 2011 by HarperCollins Publishers
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Kim It follows the big lines of history, but the author uses his own interpretation of events and especially in case of doubts he sometimes invents his ow…moreIt follows the big lines of history, but the author uses his own interpretation of events and especially in case of doubts he sometimes invents his own explanation because "if there are doubts, it means it's not sure and if it's not sure, who is to say my explanation isn't plausible?".
Certain characters are a mix of multiple real people, in order to keep the story clean and clear rather than a history lesson. So rather than introduce the multiple sons and grandson of Jochi, most of them are condensed into Batu for sake of simplicity. It's not a big issue, because Batu doesn't get much screentime anyway.

All in all, it's historical fiction which is relatively speaking quite true to the real story but features its amount of historical inaccuracies.(less)

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Dec 01, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have mixed feelings regarding the final book of Conqueror, one of my favorite historical fiction series.

I’m starting to think that there’s a real curse contained within five books series that haunts me. I don’t even know why or how this happens, but I’m never left completely satisfied by the concluding installment of all five books series I’ve read so far. Lightbringer by Brent Weeks, Heartstrikers by Rachel Aaron, The Shadow Campaigns by Django Wexler, and unfortunately, this series. All of t
Dana Ilie
Apr 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Conn Iggulden’s latest book chronicles the life of Kublai Khan, son of Tolui, grandson of Genghis Khan.

A warrior who would rule a fifth of the world with strength and wisdom.

A scholar who conquered an empire larger than those of Alexander or Caesar.

A brother who betrayed his own to protect a nation.

Conqueror paints a vivid picture of Mongol life post-Genghis and Iggulden masterfully brings almost legendary characters to life. As with all of his novels, he inserts many details from everyday lif
Apr 17, 2019 rated it liked it
I wanted to rate this higher, but the end and major focus of the story was filled with missed opportunities. There should have been more focus and closure on Kublai. 6 of 10 stars
Scott  Hitchcock
5 books, all 5*'s. By far the best historical fiction series I've read.

The thing CI gets is balance. He doesn't try to minimize the raw violence which was the Mongolian horde but he doesn't make them into mindless killers either. They have hopes, dreams, families, fears, needs and endure physical and mental pain to accomplish their goals.

Likewise CI balances giving us a sense of their culture and the cultures they conquer without getting carried away and boring everybody this side of a sociolo
Zitong Ren
I thought, like many other readers that this was a great conclusion to the series, which surprisingly is, from the top of my head, the first historical fiction series that I have finished that has a large number of books in it. Many of the historical fiction have actually been standalones, or having maybe two or three books in the series, despite me really enjoying historical fiction as a genre. So if anyone knows any good historical fiction series, please recommend them to me.

Like the rest of t
David Sven
Mar 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good finale to the series. This book sees the rise of Kublai Khan. Growing up, nobody would have guessed it would be the scholar grandson of Genghis, with his head in books and adoption of Chin culture, who would turn out to be Gur Khan of the Mongols - Then again, a generation or two before that nobody foresaw that there would be such a thing as a Mongol scholar.

Of course, Kublai doesn't stay a scholar, forced to take the field by his brother Mongke to extend Mongol control beyond the Chin bo
Lisa Reads & Reviews
I never considered myself a reader of historical fiction novels, probably due to the manner in which history was/is taught in school. In college, however, I had a favorite professor, educated at Harvard, with a keen intellect, and wit. During a class, and I still remember this, he mentioned the Mongols' sacking of Baghdad, where the city folks were so materialistic, they swallowed their jewels, only to have their bellies split open and their treasures robbed. Tremendous libraries and precious ar ...more
Debbie Zapata
Oct 16, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020printbooks
Oct 16, 1pm ~~ Review asap.

Oct 17, 2pm ~~ I thought I might come into this review spouting all sorts of intelligent remarks about not only this books but the entire series. I have opinions about it all, of course, but I am no scholar or philosopher so I will spare everyone those thoughts about nation building, power, corruption, greed; how one man's vision shifts when he is no longer there to guide it, and the influences of different cultures on a new nation. If the accepted leader of your count
Clemens Schoonderwoert
Nov 17, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Read this book in 2011, and its the 5th and final episode of the "Conqueror" series, featuring the Khan family throughout the ages of time.

This book is dedicated to Kublai Khan, who's an extraordinary man with a great a heroic mind, its about his action-packed rule, as well as the conquering of one-fitfh of the inhabited world, and all these actions will change the course of history forever.

We will see Kublai Khan from a young scholar to one's most powerful warriors, and as man that is in statut
Jun 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is my Second is the original review (which is still appropriate):
Sep 28, 2012 rated it it was ok
I have gone off this series by Conn Iggulden. I appreciated Book 1 and 2, but I have not felt anything for the books since then, and this is book 5, so that tells you how long it has been since I have gotten into this series.
I have persisted in the hopes that sooner or later I would feel what I felt in Book 2 and because I keep buying the damn books so that I have the collection. Nice covers make me weak.

I find the writing quality in many of Iggulden's books simplistic and inconsistent. Like a
Jan 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book so much I had to get all of Conn Iggulden's books on the Khan series and the books on Rome.This book was wonderful full of action,battle plans,hard choices and trickery.Conn Iggulden has done a wonderful job of making the mongols live for me.I loved how alive these men and women became for me while reading this book. I couldn't put this book down.While reading this book it was like being there in a way just so vivid.I highly recommend reading this book if you are a fan of histo ...more
Lance Greenfield
This is a wonderful conclusion to the series. Once I was into the last one hundred pages, I just had to keep reading until I had finished at 2.30 am this morning.

As Conn Iggulden says in his historical notes at the end of the book, there is still so much that he could have continued to write about the Mongolian empire. Sorhatani, mother of the four grandsons of Genghis: Mongke, Kublai, Hulegu and Arik-Boke, deserves a book of her own. However, I think that Conn is correct in deciding to leave th
Ron Sami
Dec 02, 2021 rated it really liked it
The final book in this series focuses on the Mongol Empire after 1241.

Plot. Rating 4
The book has a fairly rich and ramified plot. However, due to the long time periods of the events described, many events are shown quickly and simplistically. For example, I liked the sudden beginning of the book. I was looking forward to a big story about the ten-year internecine strife of the Mongols, but this period was only described superficially.
Nevertheless, the parts of the book related to the military ca
Jan 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This has been a great Historical Fiction series. I enjoyed this one and it was the perfect end to this series. The characters shined all throughout the entire series. I'll say that I gave the 4th installment only 3 stars, but this summed it all up. I loved the drama of war and the author showed what propels one to climb to the top, no matter the cost. That was all well done. I highly recommend this series, especially the audiobooks. ...more
Apr 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Conn Iggulden follows up his excellent series on Genghis khan with another wonderful tale. This time it's about Genghis's grandson- Kublai. It follows the intelligent and different, from the Mongol norm, man from his young teenage years to his brother Mongke becoming Khan and sending Kublai on a conquest of the Southern Sung lands of China. The book does also track the experiences of Mongke, Hulegu, Batu and others.

As per his norm, Mr. Iggulden fills his pages with well researched and exciting
Feb 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
'This story began with a single, starving family, hunted and alone on the plains of Mongolia - and ends with Kublai Khan ruling an empire larger than that of Alexander the Great or Julius Caesar. Over just three generations, that is the simply the greatest rags-to-riches tale in human history.'-Conn Iggulden

Conqueror is second only to the first book in this series as my favorite. It's just a well written novel and I could tell Conn put his heart into this one. In addition to what is usually guar
Dec 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: asia, mongols
As with all his novels, it was a well written, thoroughly researched book. Great history of culture. Significant insight into the great detail that the Mongols put into warfare and tactics.
Aug 07, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the fifth and final book of the Conqueror series, there is a lot going on. Lots of names. Lots of death. Lots of places. Like the second and fourth books, I can't say I loved it in its entirety, but it was still a good read and a satisfying end to the series.

All the books had plenty of characters to keep track of, but I think this one maybe overdid it a bit. I think this is partly because you're exposed to so much over a fairly short span. This wasn't like the beginning of the series where we
I received this book from the Goodreads Firstreads program. I was very excited to receive the book as I love Historical Fiction and always wanted to find out more about the Mongols. When requesting the book, I did not realize that it was part of a series. However, I am now happy that I have a new author to catch up on. I plan on going back and reading the entire Conqueror series, and also the Emperor series.

I really enjoyed how the author presented the historical information and how he develope
Feb 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
**Actual rating, 4.5. I took away a half a point in a fit of sulkiness.**

Really???? That's the end? Kublai wins the battle, takes the khan title end the series? Come on Mr. Iggulden, please revisit that decision. There is so much more to tell!

This was the final installment in a great historical series about the Mongols. Very well written, chock full of actual events and each book had a very thoughtful afterwards in which the author delineated fact from fiction.

Even though the autho
Aug 23, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The quality of writing didn’t noticeably drop in this one but it was super apparent that Iggulden was running out of creative steam with the series, so I don’t really buy his explanation as to why he stopped at this arbitrary-feeling point. Still, the man can write the hell out of a battle scene and there were plenty of those. I’ve already read his first Roses book and really liked so I feel confident that it was just time to move on. It just kinda sucks that this was such an underwhelming finis ...more
Dec 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Perhaps the best book of the series, I realise that whilst Kubli Kahn is a famous name, I actualy knew nothing about him and the unlikely events that led to him becoming Grand Kahn. Well truth is often better than fiction.
The RNIB's reader was good too, although different to the last book, so took a while to get used to the change in pronouncing names.
John McDermott
Mar 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
A great end to a series that became stronger with each subsequent book. Highly recommended.
Jason Golomb
Conn Iggulden makes a splendid return to his 13th century world of Mongol dominance. "Conquerer" marks Iggulden's fifth book in his historical fiction series on Genghis Khan, his legacy, and the lasting cultural impact of his Mongol empire on the world.

"Conquerer" focuses on one of Genghis' grandsons, Kublai Khan, who's probably most well known for his monumental interactions with explorer Marco Polo. Absent of the Marco Polo years, "Conquerer" explores the rise of Kublai Khan from a studious
Oct 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This novel fittingly ends the Khan series. The author says that he wants to end a series with the character alive and Kublai is very much alive and in control at the book's ending. This series has been so interesting and I have learned so much about the Mongols although, if truth be told, I knew next nothing when I began. Genghis was a fascinating man who was a natural military intellect. As much as I was interested in his life, I had no desire to emulate it. Riding the plains for months, eating ...more
Apr 03, 2012 rated it liked it
It's a telenovela! for men! with Mongols! And, to be fair, it doesn't have many exclamation points, just a lot of brutal men living by a code of honor in a brutal era. Will Kublai, grandson of Genghis and second son of Tolui, outlive his gay cousin? his brutal older brother? his self-indulgent younger brother? Will he have more success in China than his other brother has against Bagdad and the Assassins? How many ways are there to depict weak men dying pathetically, crushed by fate? Overall, it' ...more
Dec 10, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Great book! A brilliant story well told. Highly recommend to anyone with an interest in history.
I read this as a stand-alone novel even though it's officially Book 5 of a series, and it seems to stand well on its own – in fact, judging from the complaints of some reviewers that it doesn't fit into the rest of the series that well, maybe it's actually better as a standalone.

It's filled with explicit descriptions of a lot of battles, so... graphic violence warning! Right away, you're hit over the head with the fact that this is going to be a bloody, violent story. The opening scene has Guyuk
Rishi Prakash
Apr 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Super conclusion to an epic series. So much happens in this book that it felt like it could have been made into two separate books :-) This guy writes an addictive story and brings such fascinating historical characters to life. Now i definitely know about the great Mongol empire.

This book is like a dramatic change into the progress of Mongol empire as it gives the insight into the thoughts behind the actions of Kublai Kahn, Gengis Kahn's brightest grandson. Kublai chooses to establish and flou
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Also publishes under author name C.F. Iggulden.

I was born in the normal way in 1971, and vaguely remember half-pennies and sixpences. I have written for as long as I can remember: poetry, short stories and novels. It’s what I always wanted to do and read English at London University with writing in mind. I taught English for seven years and was Head of English at St. Gregory’s RC High School in Lo

Other books in the series

Conqueror (5 books)
  • Genghis: Birth of an Empire (Conqueror, #1)
  • Genghis: Lords of the Bow (Conqueror, #2)
  • Bones of the Hills (Conqueror, #3)
  • Khan: Empire of Silver (Conqueror, #4)

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