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Goldenhand (Abhorsen #5)

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  7,812 Ratings  ·  1,091 Reviews
For everyone and everything there is a time to die.

Lirael is no longer a shy Second Assistant Librarian. She is the Abhorsen-in-Waiting, with Dead creatures to battle and Free Magic entities to bind. She’s also a Remembrancer, wielder of the Dark Mirror. Lirael lost one of her hands in the binding of Orannis, but now she has a new hand, one of gilded steel and Charter Magi
Hardcover, 344 pages
Published October 4th 2016 by HarperCollins
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Melody Germain October 11th! Having waited since 2003 for this--not that we knew it was even a real possibility back then, but I *needed* more about Lirael and…moreOctober 11th! Having waited since 2003 for this--not that we knew it was even a real possibility back then, but I *needed* more about Lirael and Nick--you'd think I'd be able to handle 7 more months. But no, here I am with zero chill. (less)
Niria Sabriel first. Clariel, whilst being a prequel, still doesn't offer a view and explanation of events like Sabriel, not to mention it can be considered…moreSabriel first. Clariel, whilst being a prequel, still doesn't offer a view and explanation of events like Sabriel, not to mention it can be considered kind of separate from the main storyline. Perhaps read the main trilogy first; the prequel will have more to offer as a result.(less)

Community Reviews

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Brandon Sanderson

(Note: For an explanation of my Goodreads policy, please see here.)

Anyone who hasn’t read Sabriel , the beginning of the Old Kingdom books by Garth Nix, is missing out. I consider reading it, during the years I was trying to break in, to be one of the fundamental experiences that helped me shape my philosophy on magic systems and worldbuilding.

Needless to say, I love the magic and worldbuilding of these books—though perhaps someday I’ll do a review of Sabriel itself, and delve into wh
Kayde Zimmerle
I have very mixed feelings about Goldenhand. First things first, Sabriel is my favorite book and has been since I first read it in middle school. I am now 28, and I have reread Sabriel and the original Old Kingdom Trilogy more times than I can count. I was somewhat disappointed with Clariel, but was excited to hear that we would be revisiting the Old Kingdom and our beloved characters in Goldenhand. My expectations were high, but tempered with my "meh" feelings toward Clariel.

The Good: We get to
Charlotte May
“For everyone and everything there is a time to die.”

3.5 stars.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading the Old Kingdom series - though I must admit this last instalment didn’t blow me away as some of the others did.
It was enjoyable, and I loved that all our favourite characters are back, Lirael, Sabriel, Touchstone, Sam as well as some new faces.

It took a while for the plot to start, it involved a free magic creature accidentally brought alive by Nicholas Sayre and Lirael’s removal of said creature
3.5 stars.

I wanted to love this. I really really did. I mean, I've been obsessed with this series since I was 12, and I'm now 33. And I think in part, that was WHY I didn't love it. Don't get me wrong, I basically lost my shit when I saw there was a new Old Kingdom book coming out. But I think I had SUCH HIGH EXPECTATIONS for it that this could never actually meet them.

What I wanted was Lirael/Nick, lots of encounters with the dead, and plenty of fun times with characters that I've known and l
Nov 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
December 2016: I have so much thoughts right now. So I will ask myself questions and then answer them. (This is a good way to trick yourself into writing things when you don't know what to write about.)

First, is this a worthy successor to the original Abhorsen trilogy (which is one of my favorite fantasy series)? Yes. Is it everything I wanted from a sequel? No. Did I even know what I wanted from it? Weeeeelll, yes and no. Is it a perfect book? No. Ultimately, does it matter that it isn't perfec
Lauren Kammerdiener
Jul 22, 2015 marked it as to-read
Shelves: releases-2016


May 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, own, read_2018
Goldenhand is a continuation of the Old Kingdom lore popularised in Sabriel. It’s a unique fantasy setting which delves into the land of the dead to traverse the living; a great concept consistently maintained throughout the series.

Building on the structure of the series to date, author Garth Nix expands his fictional world to introduce new key characters (Ferin), and harsh landscapes (there’s an oxygen starved canyon) which gives the series a deeper feel and paves the way for future stories cen
Joey Woolfardis
A few years ago I re-read the Old Kingdom trilogy after forgetting almost all of it from my younger years. I was mildly disappointed to say the least, but presumably that was merely from growing up. Clariel, the prequel to that trilogy came and went without so much of a ripple and that world seemed too far away for me to care any more.

Goldenhand takes place almost directly after the Old Kingdom ends, once again following Lirael and her family. When you first pick this up you feel the familiarity
Oct 10, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
There are so many interesting directions this book could have taken and instead, the author decided to shoe horn an unlikely romance into Lirael's life because apparently she can only find happiness if she has a man?

Major Spoilers Ahead:
(view spoiler)
Nemo (The Moonlight Library)
First of all, I had absolutely NO IDEA that the ebook I was given to review from Edelweiss was only a partial copy of the book. There was no warning anywhere – I had to stumble over an announcement made on Goodreads from Nix himself saying it was only a partial review copy before the rage in me simmered down from what I believed was a cliffhanger ending and an unwrapped up plot. I was HOPPING MAD that Nix could betray a trusted reader like that, and I am so glad I was wrong, but it still colours ...more
A warning: spoilers!

I should like to say that this series is dear to me and it holds a deep and special place in my heart. Nix does a number of things with Goldenhand well, not least of all juggling multiple strong characters together in a single scene (looking at the map room scenes here). To continue, though, I think of this book as The Great Extended Epilogue.

So much of the pacing was strange. Ferin's chapters were very serious--even somber at times--and high action, life or death stuff. Lira
Carrie Mansfield
I'm disappointed. I absolutely loved Clariel and had high hopes for the true sequel to Abhorsen.

What we got was the first *half* of a sequel to Abhorsen. Very little actually happens - quite literally the majority of the story is the travel of the main characters of each major story - and absolutely nothing has been resolved.

I can't help but wonder if because this is being marketed as YA that they chose to divide this book into two instead of just writing the 700-800 page book that the story so
I received a copy of this book for free from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Also posted on my blog, Rinn Reads.

And here it is at last, my long overdue review of Goldenhand by Garth Nix. I started reading this as soon as it landed on my doormat, and read it in two days – back in October. Sadly, due to my preparations for Sci-Fi Month, and the fact that sometimes I take FOREVER to get my thoughts together, it has taken me this long to write my review up.

I first read Sabriel, the
I hate to say it but Garth Nix should have stopped after Clariel. It's the curse of the last book in that it was just not as good as previous works in the series.
OK, the world-building was still great, the magic system still innovative and the writing very good. But, I think Goldenhand could have been better.
There were so many threads in this one which took a while to come together. And actually I had inklings all along about how the novel was going to build up to its climax.
Ferin's pov chapter
Rebecca ♥ Warner, Kishan, Magnus ♥
1. Sabriel ★★★ 1/2
2. Lirael ★★★★
3. Abhorsen ★★★★
4. Clariel ★★★
5. Goldenhand ★★★★
Nick Lancaster
Oct 03, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A mixed bag. The story felt a bit too neat and tidy, and I felt that some of the characters felt a bit... I don't know diminished? Simplified? than they are in the earlier books. Some of the cameos felt a bit forced too, with the exception of one in particular which was phenomenally powerful and central to the story. The world building was a wonderful and vivid extension to the Old Kingdom, and despite my misgiving about the story it does give the sense that the events are happenings in a world ...more
Nemo (The Moonlight Library)
This review was originally posted on The Moonlight Library
This is the second review I'm writing for Goldenhand. I was supplied with a review copy from Edelweiss in 2016, but only found out it was half the book when I checked Nix's website for a quiet announcement. I purchased a physical copy because I have and love the rest of the series, but I ended up borrowing the audiobook from my local library to finish this book.

Nix's writing is beautiful and en pointe as usual. He has an uncanny knack for
Mary Lewis
Feb 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

That's what I predicted I would say. I wasn't completely wrong, because I do love this universe so much, but I do have a few words. Namely, I am so here for pretty much everything that happened in this book. I do agree with whoever said it was too neat -- it was tied up just a little bit too neatly for my taste. That said, I still loved what we got. Break my heart, why don't you, Garth Nix.

I think most of what I'm feeling right now is "I could h
Dec 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-read
This was awesome. I loved basically everything about it. Lirael is just wonderful and I love the person she's grown to be. I loved watching her and Nick interact. At first they were so awkward it was just adorable! And we got to see all of the old crew, which I am a fan of, ESPECIALLY MOGGET MY PRECIOUS LITTLE CAT SON! I want to read a book devoted to Mogget- someone (cough Nix) make that happen pleaseeeeeeeeeeeeee. This book felt like it was more mystery than the others. I didn't really know wh ...more

Nov 16, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Every bit as captivating and rich as the original Old Kingdom trilogy. An incredible piece of work that yet again shows Garth Nix's brilliant talents. I have to say, immediately a better and more fulfilling read than Clariel. Great to see the"humanity" of some of my favorite heroes.
Yes!!!! Garth Nix, you can do no wrong!

Other than have no release date :(

Meme to express the feels to come...
A story starring Lirael & Nicholas? HELL YES SIGN ME UP!!!
May 14, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, read-in-2018
Rating: 3.5 Stars

Goldenhand is the fifth book in Garth Nix's Abhorsen series. I have mixed feelings about this book. It felt good to be back in the Old Kingdom again after being away for so long. This world and these characters are some of my favorites. Garth Nix's writing is great as always. Yet the story felt strangely flat.

Chlorr of the Mask had retreated to the far north after her defeat at the hands of Sabriel, seemingly disappeared and no longer a threat. Or that's what everyone wanted to
Lauren James
Oct 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: best-of-2016
So, I recently listed Lirael, the main character of Goldenhand, as my ultimate Book Girlfriend. Here’s what I said about her:

"If there’s anyone who’s a direct inspiration for Clove, it’s Lirael. She lives in a huge underground library and is too shy to even talk to the other librarians. Instead she spends her time exploring its thousand year old depths with her magic dog sidekick. She also can transform into a otter.

It’s hard to articulate how much Lirael meant to me as a teenager. It feels v

Jul 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Great continuation of the Abhorsens series!

Loved every page. Really good story, no stones left unturned and a really good pace for it. Lirael story developped nicely, glad to see that all characters besides herself were accounted for :-)
Goldenhand takes up a few months after Abhorsen leaves off. Sabriel, Touchstone, and Sameth make cameos at the very end, but for the most part, this is Lirael's story.

Lirael is now the official Abhorsen-in-Waiting. Sabriel and King Touchstone are away on vacation, leaving Lirael in charge of managing any pressing necromantic problems in the Old Kingdom during their absence. When she receives a message from Nicholas Sayre -- Prince Sameth's former classmate, the unwitting tool of Orannis, Lirael
If you read Mistborn trilogy, cried a river and then, desperate for more, read The Alloy Law trilogy you will be familiar with the still-hungry tale of disappointment that follows...not that the Wax & Wayne books weren't fantastic, they were, but after the original Mistborn it felt a little *too* YA and much too shallow and all of this is only because both authors surpassed all standards-of-ever with the immense world building in their first series.

If this book had come out a year or two aft
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Garth Nix was born in 1963 in Melbourne, Australia, to the sound of the Salvation Army band outside playing 'Hail the Conquering Hero Comes' or possibly 'Roll Out the Barrel'. Garth left Melbourne at an early age for Canberra (the federal capital) and stayed there till he was nineteen, when he left to drive around the UK in a beat-up Austin with a boot full of books and a Silver-Reed typewriter.

More about Garth Nix

Other books in the series

Abhorsen (5 books)
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“Oh, fierce librarians, then? Tell you to shush and that sort of thing?” 5 likes
“Are you . . . are you the athask? The great one?” “Maybe,” said Mogget. “I can’t remember.” “Mogget,” 2 likes
More quotes…