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Soul of the Fire

(Sword of Truth #5)

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  65,448 ratings  ·  897 reviews
Richard Rahl has traveled far from his roots as a simple woods guide. Emperor of the D'Haran Empire, war wizard, the Seeker of Truth—none of these roles mean as much to him as his newest: husband to his beloved Kahlan Amnell, Mother Confessor of the Midlands.

But their wedding is the key that unlocks a spell sealed away long ago in a faraway country. Now a deadly power pour
Mass Market Paperback, 788 pages
Published March 2000 by Tor Fantasy (first published March 15th 1999)
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Shannon Greene
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Anthony Vogt To add on to the previous review, it's also tediously full of exposition. Temple of the Winds started to have a little bit too much recap. Soul of Sir…moreTo add on to the previous review, it's also tediously full of exposition. Temple of the Winds started to have a little bit too much recap. Soul of Sire is just re-explaining the same things over, and over again.(less)

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Average rating 3.86  · 
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 ·  65,448 ratings  ·  897 reviews

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picoas picoas
Jul 21, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2002
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

The Chicken's Head Rose: "Soul of the Fire" by Terry Goodkind

(Original Review, 2002)

"Hissing, hackles lifting, the chicken's head rose. Kahlan pulled back. Its claws digging into stiff dead flesh, the chicken slowly turned to face her. It cocked its head, making its comb flop, its wattles sway. "Shoo," Kahlan heard herself whisper. There wasn't enough light, and besides, the side of its beak was covered with gore, so she couldn't tell
Andrew Obrigewitsch
Jan 04, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: worst-list, fantasy
First 3 books where OK, but read like teen erotic fantasy with a mix a of Fountain Head. Book 4 was horrible, book 5 was the worst book I have ever read and I started 6 and it was looking even stupider so I quit less than 100 pages in.

Heroes that never learn anything and have no desire to, and cause their own trouble through their ignorance just piss me off. Then the 5th book had the evil chicken that was killing people, numerous gang bangs and gang rapes, and introduced new characters which th
Sep 30, 2011 rated it did not like it
Terrible book, I just could not finish it.

(Spoilers ahead: But if you still want to read the book, you are on your own)

I loved the Sword of Truth series in the beginning. It was different and exciting. But then the series started to get weird. First it was the weird sex that Richard was having with the red clad dominatrix, then the Sisters of the Dark had that strange session with the statue/demon in the forest etc etc.

And after a while, I started to feel about the series the same way as about
I'm about to get all up in this book's craw for some terrible choices on the part of the author, and the part of his characters, but I would like to state up front that I am not opposed to characters making choices that are morally questionable. If characters--especially "the good guys"--don't mess up every now and again, we usually find them flat or boring. What I AM opposed to is characters making morally questionable choices without either the characters or the author bothering to question th ...more
Tam Lin
Oct 11, 2009 rated it did not like it
A wonderful story about how democracy is broken and the world is better off submitting to the rule of an iron-fisted military dictator so long as he saves them from socialistm. A great read for closet fascists everywhere.
Apr 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
My 2019 reread of the Sword of Truth series has reached the fifth instalment. On the whole my reread of the first four books went really well. I flew through them and enjoyed them a lot more than I expected to. I took a break, to read some other stuff, before picking this one up so I'm not sure if that has contributed to me not feeling like Soul of Fire was quite as good as the first four books in the series or if that can just be chalked up to the fact that this was just a more flawed book than ...more
Aug 07, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Sword of Truth, those who've read his first 4 books and want to go on.
Shelves: 1st-edition, signed
This book is a lot slower going than the previous four, perhaps because Terry Goodkind is putting a lot of focus on characters we have never heard of up until now. At halfway through the book he picks up the pace though, and the last half of the book is actually very enjoyable.

Still, not even close to being one of Goodkind's best books, and it took a strong recommendation from someone that had read the entirety of it to bring this book back out of the bookshelf.

The big weakness of the book is, I
Mike (the Paladin)
Well, at least we left the formula behind somewhat here. You know the "Richard loves Kahlen-Richard loses Kahlen-there is an insurmountable reason Richard can never have Kahlen back-Richard surmounts the insurmountable (somehow)."

Unfortunately the book just isn't that good, they keep getting weaker, though the diatribes do keep getting longer.
Jul 12, 2011 rated it did not like it
Some people complain about the slow pace of the book; to me, the real problem is that especially by the end of it, much of the content felt completely unnecessary.

The big obstacle of this book was, first and foremost, the Chimes. In spite of this, they actually seem to occupy very little of the plot, except when people are just worrying about them. This wasn't a completely illogical approach, because it was necessary for the heroes to spend most of the story simply researching how these Chimes c
Eric Allen
Mar 21, 2017 rated it did not like it
An Opinionated Look At:

Terry Goodkind's Soul of the Fire

By Eric Allen

This review is rated S for Spoilers.

Soul of the Fire is the fifth book of the Sword of Truth series. When it came out, I thought to myself that it was the absolute worst this series could possibly sink to. I was, unfortunately, wrong. This book is confusing. It's boring. It's so far up its own ass that it can see daylight out the other side. And worst of all, the author is extraordinarily arrogant about it, often blaming his fa
Jan 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Terry Goodkind is a superb author, and in my opinion, his "Sword of Truth" series is the best I have ever read. So good, in fact, that I have read the entire series three times in a row, back to back, non-stop. This series is *not* for children. The series covers many aspects of the dark side of humanity, in great detail, as the heroes try to overcome the evils in the world. Goodkind is not afraid to show his readers just what evil *really* is, that is, most often, people who perform acts of evi ...more
All that comes to mind is Daft Punk's "One More Time" because news flash Terry Goodkind did it one more time.

I don't understand what it is that people dislike and at this point I don't care to find out - Terry Goodkind's writing is unquestionably superior to so many others I have read and has zero stupid cliche lines or predictable plot twists. None, not one.

Badass characters of both genders are everywhere and instead of being force fed and told about awesome they are, or have them be snarky a
Adam Wilson
Mar 19, 2012 rated it liked it
Oh, my, god... where to begin with this one? I will say that I was warned about this book and this entire series but I didn't listen. I enjoyed the first two books, and

the fourth book, and liked the third one a little, but this one just lost its damn mind. "Where did it lose its mind?" Right about the time when Richard starts looking

for the chicken that is not a chicken. I would definitely say that it is a chicken, but it is an EVIL chicken. Scawwy. Also, it is a zombie chicken. Gaspeddy gasp
Aug 14, 2012 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: No one. Maybe Terry Goodkind, so he can learn from his mistakes.
Shelves: ugh
I will be the first to admit that it's been a good, oh, eight years or more since I started this book (because I never finished it)... But, after forcing myself to plow through four of the previous books (well, I didn't hate all four of them), I was in no fit state to attempt to stomach the same ol', tired, clichéd bullshit without which Mr. Goodkind, apparently, finds it impossible to compose a story. The rest of this review is hidden behind spoiler tags. For a reason.

(view spoiler)
Rodney Wilder
Sep 20, 2009 rated it really liked it
This, while still an amazing book, definitely has been the first to disappoint me at points when held against its predecessors. The writing is as captivating as ever (though I am growing tired of the rehashing/brief introductions - I know what's going on, I'm not taking long lapses between's just becoming a tiring device), but the direction the bulk of the book went rubbed me the wrong way. My main issue: ANDERITH AND ALL THOSE DWELLING IN IT!

Now, I realize the importance of the place
2.5 stars. While a decent read, this fifth installment of the Sword of Truth series continues the let down in the overall quality of the series after the first 3 books. Richard and Kahlan remain memorable characters but not much else.
J.G. Keely
Jun 30, 2009 rated it it was ok
It is always curious to see fantasy authors who don't consider themselves to be fantasy authors. Case-in-point: Terry Goodkind. The former landscape painter has told us how he isn't a fantasy author in every interview he's ever given:

"The books I write are first of all novels, not fantasy, and that is deliberate; I'm really writing books about human beings."(1)

"To define me as a fantasy writer is to misunderstand the context of my books by misidentifying their fundamentals."(2)

"The stories I'm t
Lisa (Harmonybites)
Oct 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of Sword of Truth
There are people who loved Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth series from beginning to end. But a lot of people who loved it through the first four books feel this is where the series jumped the shark. Goodkind is a devotee of Ayn Rand; he's open about that on his website. But although you could see libertarian themes in the earlier books, this is the one where it's more than subtext easily ignored. If that is what bothers you about this book, to the point you didn't find it enjoyable, you might wa ...more
Objectivists must contend with Evil Poultry and surly parasitical kitchen servants.
Sep 21, 2011 rated it it was ok
I just have one question. Who wrote this book? I firmly believe some strange essence possessed Terry Goodkind before he wrote this book. This series went from enthralling to infuriating. The first three hundred pages of Soul of Fire are spent discussing low cut dresses, cleavage, sex scandals, food, and ridiculous politics of a country in the Midlands that has yet to be discussed in previous books. While I understand the need to portray the selfishness of this society, I do not think it needed t ...more
Kat  Hooper
Mar 31, 2009 rated it it was ok
This review refers to the SOT series through book 9.

Terry Goodkind’s first book Wizard’s First Rule was great! Except for the actual First Rule ("People are Stupid"), which was...stupid. The story had so many unique and fascinating characters (especially the secondary ones). I was in love with Richard; I wanted to be a Mord-Sith. The next couple of books of The Sword of Truth were pretty good, too.

Then...I don’t know what just TOTALLY lost it. The writing style became incredibly an
Mark Vincze
Mar 07, 2013 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: my enemies
I purchased a paperback copy of this book while I was still reading Temple of the Winds. I was already growing weary of the series and the author's simplistic attempts to teach the reader that *caveman grunt* "communism bad", but had decided I would push on with the series for the sake of completion (at this point I hadn't realized that Goodkind intended to beat this dead horse for the rest of his life.)

I loaned the book to a friend to read while I finished up Temple of the Winds. A few days lat
This was one of my least favorite of the series, especially the ending. Oh yeah, and the beginning. Crazy, demon-possessed chicken... um. Ok. I think we could have just ended with Richard & Kahlan together and called it good. Instead, from this point on, the series decides to develop a new enemy and becomes much too dark for me (although I didn't figure it out until later).

Whatever hope I had that the series would return to the lighter tone of the first book began to die with this one. But for s
Apr 06, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 28, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 27, 2014 rated it it was ok
Not great at all.
All the characters started doing out-of-character stupid shit, and nothing much really happened. Also, the plot was just not very interesting, and solutions for problems were a bit far-fetched (view spoiler). And what was the demon chicken that was just completely forgotten after 150 pages of whining over it?
All the new characters that were introduced were stupid and ignorant, and most of them didn't even have a good purpos
Jarrod Scarbrough
Oct 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audio, read-in-2013
Oh, how I love this series! For me, each book seems to get better! I definitely liked Soul of the Fire far more than any of the others! What a great journey this story takes us on! I find it hard to discipline myself to read only one book in this series and not jump right in to the next one! Will get to that one soon though, got to see what happens after one hell of an ending!
Jun 19, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
too long and boring

3/4 of this book was pointless snoozefest
the rest was just... idk what was the rest really
there was a few interesting ideas dropped here and there so i would not say the whole thing was unnecessary but could be much shorter at least

richard was more irritating than ever... a whole new level was unlocked
kahlan just wanted screw richard, thats it, thats her arc for this book
even sassy cara couldn't save the day :<
Jan 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
Soul of the Fire was incredibly frustrating at times! Terry Goodkind also has a very long-winded way of writing which can be trying at time (and don't even get me started on those pesky recaps) But having said that, I find I am unable to stop reading the series, at least, that's the case so far.

What I like about his characters is that just because a person is committed to the "right side" doesn't mean that they won't make grave mistakes or that they aren't weak. In Soul of the Fire, for instanc
Jan 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
I am on a mission to catch up on this series, since I cannot remember why I stopped reading it in the first place. Also, with the new tv show, I find myself trying to remember what I've read. I vaguely remember the chimes. The big question are in the world or not? Is the magic really failing or not? And what's Zedd up to? These are the questions that Kahlan, Richard, Cara and another figure from Richard's past must answer if they are to save the land of Anderith from the invading army of Jagang. ...more
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Terry Goodkind was a contemporary American writer and author of the best-selling epic fantasy series, The Sword of Truth, creator of the television show The Legend of the Seeker, and writer of the self-published epic, The First Confessor: The Legend of Magda Searus (a prequel and origin story of the first Mother Confessor). He had over 20 million copies in print and has been translated into more t ...more

Other books in the series

Sword of Truth (1 - 10 of 15 books)
  • Wizard's First Rule (Sword of Truth, #1)
  • Stone of Tears (Sword of Truth, #2)
  • Blood of the Fold (Sword of Truth, #3)
  • Temple of the Winds (Sword of Truth, #4)
  • Faith of the Fallen (Sword of Truth, #6)
  • The Pillars of Creation (Sword of Truth, #7)
  • Naked Empire (Sword of Truth, #8)
  • Chainfire (Sword of Truth, #9)
  • Phantom (Sword of Truth, #10)
  • Confessor (Sword of Truth, #11)

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