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The Hand of Chaos (The Death Gate Cycle, #5)
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The Hand of Chaos (The Death Gate Cycle #5)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  15,795 Ratings  ·  122 Reviews
The Hand of Chaos

Chaos is everywhere as the Lord of the Nexus orders his servant Haplo and the human child known as Bane to further their master's work on Arianus, the realm of air. But their one time companion Alfred has been cast into the deadly Labyrinth. And somehow the assassin Hugh the Hand has been resurrected to complete his dark mission. More important, the evil f
Paperback, 446 pages
Published November 1st 1993 by Spectra (first published January 1st 1993)
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Apr 13, 2012 rated it liked it
This one is so far the weakest link in the chain, but it's still good. It suffers from some pretty unlikeable main characters (an annoyingly precocious and evil child, a gang of evil incarnates, and a suicidal assassin). And there's a rehash of the annoyingly simple Gegs (dwarves) who have lost their innocence but haven't gained much wisdom. The previous books had long stretches of compelling reading (so far Fire Sea is the one I couldn't put down), but this one I could start and stop at will. A ...more
Jul 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
This is the book where The Death Gate Cycle changes--Haplo has explored all four worlds created during the Sundering of the original world, and it's time to start putting his Lord's plans for domination into action. However, Haplo is suffering a crisis of faith. He's doing his best to blindly follow Lord Xar, but he has seen too much and experienced too much to believe in the one-dimensional view of the world that Xar is promoting. Haplo is also starting to believe that Xar is misguided and just ...more
May 20, 2017 rated it liked it
This book was a little annoying. I don't know why. I think it's Bane. That little bitch pisses me off!
Grayson Lawrence
Sep 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
In the book, Haplo is tasked with turning on the Kicksey-Winsey. Meanwhile, Lady Iridal and Hugh the Hand, with the help of the Kenkari Elves, are going to rescue Bane from the Elves. The dragon snakes are wreaking havoc down on Drevlin. This is all happening on the world of Arainus. At the end of the book, Hugh the Hand is tasked with killing Haplo.

I chose to read this book because mainly, I didn't have another book to read so I found the series at a thrift store and couldn't put it down.

Jan 30, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
Oh, too bad. Not even halfway through this and I hit the wall big time.

I enjoyed the first four books a lot. It was so fun and interesting learning about each world and getting a glimpse of how they all interrelate. But, at the point I'm at now, it seems the focus is more on the turmoil between the powers that be, and frankly, I'm not all that interested in that. The world building here is very imaginative, and the storyline up until now has been enough to drive me through about 1500 pages.
But n
Charlie George
Enjoyed the reintroduction of the popular character Hugh the Hand, thought dead in Dragon Wing (Book 1), but resurrected by Alfred. Haplo begins to stand up and defy his master Xar, blinded by ambition and hatred of the Sartan. He also shames the mensch of Arianus for fighting and hating one another by illustrating their common enemy. In turn, the mensch, including a human mystriarch, elven Kenkari wizards, and the stubborn dwarven leaders Limbeck and Jarre, show Haplo that the only way to fight ...more
Dec 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: borrowed
I've said it a thousand times, and I'll keep saying it. I absolutely love this series.

It's the kind of fantasy that I really enjoy, it's intricate, thought out, culturally diverse and in depth, great action, and wondrous feels.

The powers that are pulling every races strings in this are quite mysterious and fascinating- the series always leaves you questioning everything you think you know. While you're going through the story you learn so much, yet everything you learn leaves you asking more qu
Feb 04, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Prestado por: Sergio
Aug 14, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There are a lot of good things about Hand of Chaos. Haplo continues to develop. I like the Kenkari. I applaud the return of Bane the devil child. As well as Limbeck and Jarre. Also, randomly, I like the side character Trian.

I'm sort of ambivalent about the return of Hugh the Hand from the dead. On the one hand, what he turns out to be is pretty interesting, and... I like the guy. I also really, really appreciate that his relationship with Iridal doesn't go anywhere beyond –– his admiration of he
Geoff Battle
Jul 11, 2017 rated it liked it
With the various Gates explored, it is time for Haplo to head back through the original Gate, with Bane in tow. In no time at all Haplo and Bane find themselves embroiled in a Race war and the vague plot sprawls across half the book, continuously adding more cast members, until eventually settling down. That half is hard going, where not much really happens, however the latter half of The Hand of Chaos produces a decent plot and welcomes back an old character to spice things up. Definitely a dra ...more
Jun 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
My favorite installment so far, at first I was growing weary of the whole Sang-Drax business, dragging my rating between 2 and 3 stars, but once the Kenkari kicked in the whole mythos of the series began growing at an amazing rate and the whole story just went uphill from there.
Óscar Montequín torre
I have thought for the last 3 books that they wrote these series with a sort of a filler feel about it. They feel longer than they should, however, this one finally pushes the plot forward and finally let's you see the whole picture, sort of. Anyway, let's see how everything unravels.
Diane Tolley
Feb 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
These books have become a family staple now . . .
M Nyberg
May 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
Many of book one's characters are brought back in book 5 of the series and one of the two main characters is given a break from the action. A good followup to book 4.
Oct 13, 2017 rated it liked it
This series full of unlovable characters is somehow growing on me.
Mar 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Compared to the previous books in the series I would rank this as an excellent read.

I read some reviews about the book mentioning the lack of action in the book and frankly I'm not sure if they read the same book. Overall I felt the level of action here very high and the plot drives towards the climax pretty evenly.

One thing I enjoyed about this book is it brought back some older characters from the first entry in the series. In bringing back these characters it aided in maintaining the level
Ward Bond

Chaos is everywhere as the Lord of the Nexus orders his servant Haplo and the human child known as Bane to further their master's work on Arianus, the realm of air. But their one time companion Alfred has been cast into the deadly Labyrinth. And somehow the assassin Hugh the Hand has been resurrected to complete his dark mission. More important, the evil force that Haplo and Alfred discovered on Arianus has escaped. As Haplo's doubts about his master grow deeper, he must decide whether to obey

Aug 17, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2010, fantasy, fiction
This book took me a long time to get into. I'd say it was around the last third of the book where it stopped being a chore to read. Much as there definitely is some good stuff in this series, I'm seeing that it does suffer from the self-indulgence that I dislike about fantasy. This series should be shorter, and could be without losing anything integral to the story or the emotions meant to be generated by it.

But anyway. I was happy to have Hugh back (although I really hope they explain his resur
Mar 29, 2014 rated it liked it

Having visits each of the four realms in the previous four books, we now return to the first world, Arianus, world of air. We also now start to see things begin to spiral towards the inevitable climactic conclusion. The plot has definitely been advancing along the way, with this book we start to delve into the plot in a serious way. This series has certainly taken a lot of twists and turns along the way, and is ending up in quite a different direction than I'd first anticipated. It's not a bad d
Apr 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Questo è uno dei miei cicli fantasy preferiti. In sette libri viene creato un sistema di mondi coerente ed intrigante, in cui si muovono personaggi non sempre pienamente consapevoli delle loro azioni. Tutto è permeato da una sorta di patina fascinosa e magica, un'atmosfera avventurosa come se ne vedono poche. Dimenticatevi le piatte caratterizzazioni di DragonLance e la sua noia mortale: *questo* è vero fantasy.
Tra i primi 4 libri, che sono una sorta di prologo per la vera guerra che si combatte
Jul 25, 2016 rated it really liked it
Again we're putting a pin in the tempestuous relationship between Haplo and Alfred (the latter who just got thrown in the Labrynth with his new-found lady love) and returning to Arianus, the world of Air with much of the old cast. Bane has been with Lord Xar, the head of the Patryns and Haplo's liege lord, as a kind of a protege/apprentice since the end of Dragon Wing. Now he gleefully drives a wedge between Haplo and Xar on the eve of his mission to go with Haplo and turn on the great machine t ...more
Nov 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Another great book in the series. The first part is amazing; not only do we go back to Arianus, to see some old characters from the first book, but we also find things about the great machine, Kicksey-winsey. We also get some hints about other worlds from Zifnab (yes, he makes an appearance in this book but thankfully, a pretty short one).
Unfortunately, I didn't enjoy the second half of the book that much as it turns from a mystery to a political novel. We have all these various factions and ch
Jun 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This fifth installment was most difficult to digest for me, in sheer length and what felt to me as "we're a bit lost", aren't we? They could have made this shorter. A lot shorter, maybe, not sure. Hard to judge. I’m a quick reader, luckily, and I also have a knack for sensing when I’m getting additional, but not necessarily vital information, so I often quick-read over such passages. Even if I do miss vital information this way, it doesn’t bother me much. This is the kind of epic I willingly sin ...more
Jun 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
Yay, a return to a familiar world and characters! Of course, a year has passed and our beloved mensch have undergone some dramatic personality developments as a result of the past year's events. Also very cool was being able to visit new parts of a familiar world (Skurvash, Kenkari, Tribus Empire).

This was another 'bridge' book, very much a continuation of the ones before and after...which isn't a big issues for someone (me) who is determined to read the whole shebang.

Surprisingly, I missed Alfr
Daniel Eggert
Jun 21, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Agree with many of the others who thought this book was a ponderously paced. I read the first 4 of the series in 3-5 days each. This book took me six weeks because I grew disinterested in:
all the scenes without Haplo
most of the scenes with (view spoiler)
The lack of Alfred bumbling through everything (Never thought I'd say that.)
Haplo's inactivity during his appearances in the storyline
Bane's non-development as a character
(view spoiler)
Jan 31, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Copied from Dragon Wing. Review is for entire series.


The Deathgate Cycle is one of my favorite series ever. Everything about it - all 7 books - are just... high fantasy perfection.

- The world (or rather universe) is amazingly unique, stunning in set up and description, and terrifically told.
- The magic and its use is top notch. It's one of few series that really go into HOW the magic of the world works.
- The characters are all highly memorable, including "Dog", the secondaries, the
Lies make the sweetest poison.

When Haplo began his journey his course was clear, victory all but a formality. Now he hurries back to warn his people of the evil he has discovered, only to find the enemy waiting for him. They serve Lord Xar now, as they once served Haplo. Confident in his power, Xar dismisses Haplo’s concerns, and sends him back to Arianus with Bane.

The story quickly grows into a vast game of lies, with dragon-snakes surreptitiously offering their support to each player. Regrett
Sep 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
was a bit disappointed at the beginning of the book as it was sort of explaining and repeating what had happened in previous books and since I am reading them in order this is kind of boring but then it did take off and a lot happened!! The intricacies of the lives of all the people on the four worlds are getting more and more muddled and the plot is thickening!! I am scared of Xar, have very negative feelings about him and do not trust him at all, Alfred was not in this book at all and I must s ...more
Apr 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: modern-sf
The Hand of Chaos is book 5 of 7 in The Death Gate Cycle. Haplo, our protagonist, has now explored the 4 worlds, one for each of the old elements, created by the Sundering. He has finally found his people’s old enemy, the Sartans, and discovered a new evil.

The 4th book ended with (rather than a true climax) Samah, leader of the Sartan, opening the Death Gate, making travel between the worlds much easier. True to form, there is now action happening across the worlds, but the vast majority of the
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Fantasy novelist who, along with Tracy Hickman, was one of the original creators of the Dragonlance game world. I've written numerous novels and short stories set in the world of Krynn, as well as series in other, original worlds. These include: Darksword, Rose of the Prophet, Star of the Guardians, DeathGate, Dragonvarld, Sovereign Stone, Dragonships, and the Dragon Brigade. I also wrote two para ...more
More about Margaret Weis...

Other Books in the Series

The Death Gate Cycle (7 books)
  • Dragon Wing (The Death Gate Cycle, #1)
  • Elven Star (The Death Gate Cycle, #2)
  • Fire Sea (The Death Gate Cycle, #3)
  • Serpent Mage (The Death Gate Cycle, #4)
  • Into the Labyrinth (The Death Gate Cycle, #6)
  • The Seventh Gate (The Death Gate Cycle, #7)