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The Scholast in the Low Waters Kingdom

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  170 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
A stranger claiming knowledge of realms beyond the known world attempts to stop a war.
ebook, 32 pages
Published March 29th 2017 by Tor Books
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Rating details
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Apr 14, 2017 rated it it was ok
2.5 stars? It wasn't bad, exactly, it just felt incomplete. I'm relatively inexperienced with short fiction, so that might just be me not having an appreciation for it yet. idk.
Nov 28, 2017 rated it liked it
I liked this a lot, but the whole set up and even the main character reminded me awfully much of Cherryh's Morgaine series.
Apr 01, 2017 rated it did not like it
Scholast has hugely intriguing world-building which finally became a problem for this as a short story. There's just too much implied there there: it reads like a creative brainstorming session for Gladstone's next series of books and becomes almost a taunt.

Huge worlds aren't necessarily a bad thing for a short story but in this case the plot was subsumed by the world-build and it flattened the ending: what should have been a revelation became trite.

Some writers of 'big' novel arcs, like N.K. J
Mar 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook, fantasy, short
“I don’t understand.” “Those are the first words of the wise.”

Vintage Gladstone is a one-gulp package. All the best of Gladstone’s world creation and social consciousness in thirty-six pages.

“Lies are particularly suited to the situation. Like art.”

Well drawn characters. Threads into other realms, clearly defined enough to make this story a pleasure.

“What’s the good of this friendship of yours if you don’t trust me?”
Julie (Manga Maniac Cafe)
3 stars

I'll give this 3 stars. It is so short that there is really no plot development, but I found the basic premise interesting. I wish it had been longer. As it stands, it's more of a teaser than a complete story
Mar 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: short-fiction
"Stories about the Scholast proliferate among the uneducated. They say she was a god, or not. She seduced the Princess Martial, or was saved by her. She has been credited with miracles. But history owes its pride of place to the truth of its tales, and since many of the war’s principles will soon pass beyond reference, your humble scholars have prepared this meticulously sourced account to endure for future generations."

Although the story’s tone begins as a legend or myth, the Scholast (Jane) qu
Maggie Gordon
Gladstone's short isn't really a story so much as an experiment in world building that might lead to an interesting story one day. But this is not that story. Stuff happens, the world is intriguing, but it's hard to care since we don't know quite enough. The characters are flat and I never really grasped what was at stake. Alas!
Jul 16, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Another enjoyable short story from

Told in the style of a journal chronicling a historical event, a being - The Scholast - appears on a world, at first revered like a god, mostly due to her appearance and in the way in which she arrives, but soon just treated like an outsider as she tries to win over the trust of the ruler, Princess Martial, of the land she's arrived in, in order to warn and prepare them for an incoming attack.

The story is fairly quickly paced, as we jump from the prepar
Anurag Sahay
Aug 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Amazing novella - I'm already a fan of Gladstone, and this story hits all the beats that I like from his writing. The writing style in particular is a little more poetic than his usual novels, mostly due to the narrative frame, I think.

The story itself is not as compelling as the ideas it puts across, and the beautiful world-building that it belies, but in a story of this length it doesn't detract from enjoyment too much. The story also interests me because it's based on Mohism, according to the
Brent Lambert
May 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Max is one of my favorite writers so I really wanted to enjoy this wrong. Don't get me wrong. The story telling was definitely intriguing and fast paced. But it felt like there was something missing at the heart of this story. Like there was a revelation around the corner that just didn't get a chance to flourish. So it was hard for me to really invest into this story.
Jamie Sidey
Jul 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Like just about everything from Max Gladstone, I enjoyed the hell out of this.

I hope he revisits this world in full book form... not necessarily a full book about this story, but perhaps the claw back from the disaster that created this world
Aug 17, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: sf-fantasy
Short story, one of those artful productions that tell one tale in the guise of another. Here a mysterious savior appears to rescue a city from raiders—on what is evidently an ancient generation ship with a regressed population. Reminiscent of Cherryh’s “Morgaine” series.
Sep 30, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, read-2017
This was way too brief - it felt as though there was a rich, unexplored world that was not dealt with. Even the relationship between Jane and Princess Martial was hinted at; hardly explored. Ultimately dissatisfying.
Amy Mills
So good. Much as I like Yoon Ha Lee's works, I feel like this is what he often tries to do, and just doesn't quite succeed. There's too little to connect to. Gladstone creates a world with so much to connect to and draws you in immediately.
Sep 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Much as I love Gladstone's Lawyer-Wizards series, it was really nice to see him write for a different world. The descriptive language reminded me very much of the amazing lyricism of Yoon Ha Lee. Very enjoyable.
May 18, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: short-stories
Interesting world, but maybe not a world for short stories-even longish ones, not much there there.
Päris lummav ja krüptiline.
Jul 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A wonderful weird little lesbian romance.
Jul 30, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
An enjoyable fantasy story with an interesting pacifist theme. The scholast comes to a fictional word to bring a dire warning: the enemy is coming, and it will have technologies you have never seen before. Will the scholast be able to save humanity from war? Or is she destined to be a new Cassandra, preaching to a public all to eager to conquest and to leverage any advantage to steal riches from others?
rated it it was ok
Apr 25, 2018
Jeremy Hinegardner
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Jul 03, 2017
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Dec 14, 2017
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Sep 24, 2017
Geonn Cannon
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May 28, 2017
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Apr 01, 2017
rated it it was amazing
Nov 18, 2017
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Apr 13, 2017
Eva Gronroos
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Oct 28, 2017
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Jun 28, 2017
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Max Gladstone is the author of the Craft Sequence: THREE PARTS DEAD, TWO SERPENTS RISE, FULL FATHOM FIVE, and most recently, LAST FIRST SNOW. He's been twice nominated for the John W Campbell Best New Writer award, and nominated for the XYZZY and Lambda Awards.

Max has taught in southern Anhui, wrecked a bicycle in Angkor Wat, and been thrown from a horse in Mongolia. Max graduated from Yale Univer