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Fatal Revenant

(The Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant #2)

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  5,393 ratings  ·  225 reviews

The instant New York Times bestseller, and the return of the Thomas Covenant series- "a landmark fantasy saga."(Entertainment Weekly)

In the most eagerly-awaited literary sequel in years, Linden Avery, who loved Thomas Covenant and watched him die at the end of Book Six, has returned to the Land in search of her kidnapped son, Jeremiah. As Fatal Revenant begins, Linden watc

Hardcover, 610 pages
Published 2007 by G.P. Putnam's Sons
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Average rating 3.85  · 
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 ·  5,393 ratings  ·  225 reviews

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Greg Hamerton
Jan 15, 2012 rated it liked it
I loved the first Chronicles and applauded the second. The third Chronicles began in a cunning way, and I was eager to be swept away into the Land once again. But this book, Fatal Revenant, dragged at my heels.

It could be cut by 400 pages and still tell the same story, and the excessive use of anachronistic (damn, he's doing it to me too now, I mean to say old) and downright obscure adjectives highlight the problem: Donaldson insists on telling us exactly what every single thing means, and every
Jan 28, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
The disappointment I feel over The Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant so far is like an innominate puissance that has left my love for Stephen R. Donaldson quite frangible. (If you have read the book, you’ll understand the obscure word choices.)

Like many others, I am a huge fan of the first two chronicles, but also, as for many others, the first two books of the last chronicles have been a chore to get through. I had hoped that Fatal Revenant would outshine Runes of the Earth, but that was not
David Katzman
Jul 09, 2020 rated it did not like it
This review is for all ten books in the series. My re-read of the first six books was colored through the lens of nostalgia. The first two trilogies affected me a great deal as a youth—I read them at some point during high school. When I saw that Donaldson had completed the story arc with The Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, a four-book tetralogy, I decided to return to the originals and read them all in sequence.

I regret the decision, but now at least I’ve completed them. I do believe that b
From The Runes to Revenant, with nary a pause (much to be said for holding off on jumping into a series), so some momentum was maintained. That being said, however, this book started to annoy me.

The writing, no change there, and I could live with the repetition (just read faster), but some elements of the story and Linden herself were less than palatable. On the journey to Melenkurion, it seemed pretty obvious pretty early on that sometime was seriously amiss, and Linden seemed utterly unable t
Danie Ware
Mar 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Verbose, too long and somewhat up its own ass? Absolutely. But it’s also glorious - a tour of times and places that will touch anyone who’s ever loved the Land right to the quick. Weaving in and out of legends, offering some very clever touches of continuity, and folding in every question you never knew you had, it dances perfectly across unseen fault lines. And good to see Linden with her feet under her and a full head of steam!
Feb 13, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

With the first novel, The Runes of the Earth, to have brought his triumphant return to the series that marked his career more than two decades ago, choosing to leave the last chapter aside in order to broaden his horizons and feel ready as a writer before tackling it, Stephen R. Donaldson plunges us deep into the past of the Land, taking us in Fatal Revenant, the second of four instalments of the Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, in a story of Masters, Demondim-spawn, great horses, prodigi
Dec 07, 2010 rated it it was ok
"Frickety-frackety-frunk!" spat Covenant.

"He's right, Mom," said Jeremiah.

"I don't understand," Linden whined.


That's only the first part of this book, but Part Two doesn't get much better. Oh, well. I'm into the third book of the series now, and I suppose I'll have to finish it out.

Let's do this.
Apr 30, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: sf-fantasy
I've been pleasantly surprised by this third chronicle of the Land. It doesn't have the same impact at the original story about Covenant but Donaldson's a master story teller.

He also has a solid ear for names; rarely do they sound "off."
Wayland Smith
May 02, 2018 rated it it was ok
A friend and fellow writer once described the Covenant books as one of the best fantasy settings ever created, utterly ruined by the main character. I pretty much agree with that. I read the first two series way back in high school, and was curious when I heard there was another. So I gave this a whirl.

I've heard many variations on the theme of could vs should. I'm not sure Donaldson should have written this one. The second series ended at a fine point to stop the tales of the Land (least creat
David Hughes
I enjoyed the book probably a bit over descriptive in places and I feel sure some of the words he uses are made up or just unnecessarily complicated. Donaldson has a style of writing that keeps the reader very frustrated I can see why it would put people off reading his books as it has been the theme throughout the full Covenant tales. I have found this book and the last book harder to read than the first two chronicles (6 books) and hope the third and fourth are easier.
Apr 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great writing but such a long read. Donaldson is amazing but sometimes his intricate story web can be so tiring. Similar to the middle works of both series one and two, this Thomas Covenant book again leaves the reader in exhausted suspense like books one and two of the Lord of the Rings. Donaldson vocabulary is absolutely beyond belief.
Michael Battaglia
Feb 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This will fall under the category of "weird asthetic things I like to notice" but I wonder at what point the publisher and/or the author decided that the cover design needed to be changed from "random fantasy widescreen landscape shot" to "major character glaring at you while standing in front of a tree like you're the one on the wrong end of a firing squad". Because while my version of the first volume shows tiny people being dwarfed from the landscape, every other volume shows someone seemingl ...more
Jun 04, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy, series
I'll probably stick with it simply because I've gotten this far, but this series has now well and truly worn on me. It all seems to come down to a series of journeys, one after the other. They're always either heading somewhere or on their way back from somewhere else which causes about 70% of the book to be filler between significant events (5% of which is Donaldson abusing his pet-word, "lambent".). This is compounded by the fact that the entire book is told without exception from the viewpoin ...more
Aug 02, 2007 rated it it was amazing
The Covenant series has always been my favorite epic fantasy series. Donaldson rewards the patient reader, and this volume is no exception to that. I had the opportunity to hear Donaldson discuss the series in person, and he noted that he'd envisioned the end of the final book - _The Last Dark_ - when he began to outline _The Wounded Land_, over 25 years ago. You have to admire that kind of foresight, if only because such foresight seems to be lacking in other series fiction.

Donaldson brings bac
Jonathan O'Brien
Apr 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is another solid installment in the Last Chronicles where we get to see a lot of the ancient, well-known figures of the Land--Berek, Damelon, sandgorgons, ur-viles, Demondim, Infelice, Giants, and so on. I enjoyed those aspects of the book, though I think this book does have weaknesses. Mainly, those weakness come down to two elements for me--the Insequent and the deus ex machina that occurs in several battle scenes. Like always, the characters in this series won't necessarily act as you wo ...more
Kevin Albee
Aug 17, 2008 rated it liked it
VDonaldsons stories of the Land filled my teen years with great joy. Even in the wounded land when he caused me great pain. In his own words "the best way to hurt some one is to take away something they love and give it back broken."

The Runes of the earth and its sequal Fatal Revenant continue this saga. thomas Covanant is dead and the torch is passed to his companion of the second trilogy Linden Avery.

Frankly I was disappointed. I can hardly wait to see what happens but these are not Stephen Do
Rob Hermanowski
Oct 09, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-book, fantasy
Re-read this (Book 2 of the Last Chronicles, Book 8 in the complete saga) in my grand re-read of the entire Thomas Covenenat series, culminating in Book 10 (being published this October)! This is the audio version by the always outstanding Scott Brick. Complex and intricate - I loved every minute of it!
Jul 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This is the 2nd book of the Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, and is a solid addition to the Covenant series as a whole.

It is difficult to review this book without providing massive spoilers, both for this one and for its predecessor. Even telling one what the basic plot is about, can spoil Runes of the Earth (book 1 of the series). Therefore, I will not summarize the plot here. I also urge readers not to peruse even the blurb on the book jacket. If you value being surprised as the author int
Mar 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My God, what a slog this was. I think it took about 18 months to get through. It kind of felt like a book I knew I should read and was making myself read but finding it a chore, a bit like reading Russian lit at university – fantastic books but a real slog at times. Yes, I read War and Peace.

I love the first and second chronicles, particularly the second. In fact love might not be a strong enough word for the second chronicles. There's barely a day goes past that I don't find myself thinking of
Jim Razinha
Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was ok
I have to be as doggedly persistent in finishing the series this time as Donaldson surely was in over-writing it. Tortuously tedious, agonizingly slow, maddening paralysis of yet another main character - there is little to root for in Linden Avery, and he does her no favors, and sadly immemorable... It turns out I did read this when it came out but only remembered one partial revelation and was only finally able to recognize the actual reveal when it happened. I recall little from the first read ...more
Jackie Wadsworth
Jun 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, fantasy
This was long.

So, this is the second book in the Final Chronicles of Thomas Covenant. It starts with Thomas Covenant, who is dead, and Jeremiah, Linden's son (she's the main character this time around) who is sadly unable to speak or respond at all in our world, but appears well and whole in The Land, albeit clearly not very fond of his adopted mother who has done everything for him for years. Which is sad.

Covenant turns out to be a bit of a dick, which is not the Thomas Covenant Linden fell i
Micah Scelsi
Jan 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Donaldson is very gifted at coming up with complicated and creative plots. His twists leave the reader always wondering what will happen next, or indeed what the given events mean. Unfortunately his manner of storytelling has never resonated well with me. I find it difficult to get through his novels, though I think his overall story compelling. For instance, I enjoyed reading the Thomas Covenant cycle of novels, yet there was always something lacking and I always felt like I didn't quite unders ...more
Christopher Selmek
Jul 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
There's a twist near the end of the first half of this book; I don't know if I should mention it. I went on wikipedia and read the synopsis beforehand, so I knew exactly what was coming. I'd like to think that even those readers who like to be surprised must know that something isn't quite right, but Donaldson manages to channel the suspense through an exciting adventure and we get to learn more about the history of The Land.

I wish the second half had lived up to the first. Like many of the othe
Richard Clay
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
N.W. Moors
May 22, 2020 rated it liked it
It pains me to give this book a generous 3 stars because I love Mr. Donaldson's writing (Mordant's Need and the first six Thomas Covenant books are some of my favorite fantasy books and I enjoyed the Great God's War series). Perhaps it was because I liked Thomas Covenant's POV more; Linden always seemed whiny and self-absorbed, but reading this book was painful.
I still love his writing style although it's become somewhat repetitive. His word usage is superlative. I know others don't like it, but
Jul 27, 2019 rated it liked it
I wish I could like this book more, but it is plodding and too carefully calculated. As in the previous Covenant epics, there is no doubt that every character is precisely placed to enact a crucial plot point at the right time. There is no sense that the heroine won't emerge victorious despite all the stumbling along the way. These things could be dismissed— as all fantasy novels and series play with these tropes— if the book was fun at all. But Donaldson seems to write from the place of someone ...more
Oct 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, favorites
One can never be sure, one can never be certain, but one must decide and act anyway.

It is hard to imagine a writer of fiction who struggles more authentically and helpfully with the crises of being human better than Donaldson. I am so glad I decided to continue reading the Last Chronicles. I was nervous, thinking "How can he improve upon perfection?" but he has not disappointed.
Feb 28, 2018 rated it it was ok
I guess I still enjoy these. At this point, I'm sort of finishing... because I've come this far.
I will probably read the final 2 books in the series.
Essentially, Stephen R. Donaldson is incapable of writing a story where the character triumphs without exhausting torture of the soul.
Good things: great word use, awesome descriptions, yes, he makes you feel the agony.
Sep 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Marshall Cobb
Nov 13, 2017 rated it liked it
Could not finish, which is very unusual for me. Just too many references to past events in the series without a compelling narrative in the current incarnation. I love Mr. Donaldson's work. He remains one of my favorite authors. Just could not make this work in my tiny brain.
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Stephen Reeder Donaldson is an American fantasy, science fiction, and mystery novelist; in the United Kingdom he is usually called "Stephen Donaldson" (without the "R"). He has also written non-fiction under the pen name Reed Stephens.


Stephen R. Donaldson was born May 13, 1947 in Cleveland, Ohio. His father, James, was a medical missionary and his mother, Ruth, a prostheti

Other books in the series

The Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant (4 books)
  • The Runes of the Earth (The Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, #1)
  • Against All Things Ending (The Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, #3)
  • The Last Dark (The Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, #4 )

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