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House of Chains (Malazan Book of the Fallen, #4)
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Group Read - House of Chains > HoC - End of Book Discussion

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message 1: by Lee, High Priest of Shadow (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lee (kiwifirst) | 1508 comments Mod
NO SERIES SPOILERS.

House of Chains discussion.


message 2: by David Sven, Mortal Sword..Meow (new) - rated it 5 stars


message 3: by Rob, Quick Ben (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 1054 comments Mod
My Review


message 4: by Lori (last edited Jun 14, 2013 01:15PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lori David: "I have a mental graveyard somewhere in my head which was able to take a breather before the next wave of expired neurons had to pass through Hood’s Gate and on to brain cell heaven"

LOVE this!!! You are so right about Karsa, it makes me realize I couldn't get into the fan love he gets because I couldn't get past his original atrocities. You've really hit it on the nail here. I knew he was awesome but I didn't forgive. This time I did, and marvel at his development. WHen he tells Tavore he doesn't need to kill her and the Malazans, he's dead serious about a change of his ways.

Rob - I think it was because you were impatient to get back to the story you could follow with the characters you knew and loved. I know you're nervous about MT because it's about the Edur but now it's a major storyline not just dialog and exposition. I was taken with Trull from the onset but I too concentrated most on the Bridgeburners and Shadow in HOC. I'm most fascinated with Shadow which is a driving force behind the whole series. And the Edur are Shadow, so learning more about what happened to them, how they lost, we great. But there's another storyline going on too that is so entertaining!

See this is why I no longer write reviews, I don't need to you've done it for me!

Because I got into the glory of Karsa I appreciated this book more than my initial reading.

But I agree with Rob, I pretty much disliked everyone in Sha'ik's camp. Except Heboric. And Oric who has his own cross to bear with a father like that, he truly tried to help. and is not like the rest of his race as indicated by the 4 others. Who seem self-righteous. (view spoiler)

It was beautiful when the desert was cleaned, back to it's glory. Without all the hate. Such a strong statement.

Which makes me feel sorry for Felisin, I wonder just when she was noticed by the gods, TCG especially, it could have been pretty much from the start so she never stood a chance. She only seems to come back to a clear head at the very end.


message 5: by Rob, Quick Ben (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 1054 comments Mod
Heboric and L'oric are two I've changed my opinion of. I actually like Heboric at the start of DG, but got tired of him at some point. He's become interesting again as this book progressed.


message 6: by David Sven, Mortal Sword..Meow (new) - rated it 5 stars

David Sven (gorro) | 2042 comments Mod
Thanks Lori.
Loved your review Rob.


message 7: by Lee, High Priest of Shadow (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lee (kiwifirst) | 1508 comments Mod
Great Reviews David and Rob.

I throughly enjoyed my second time through this story. It has altered ny feelings on a couple of different characters. I really really didn't like Crokus in this story first time round. I found him to be a whining git. But second time around, I have paid a lot more attention to his role and his relationship with Cotillion and I no longer hate him so.

L'oric was another character that grew on me, I remembered his story in the first read but really did not fully understand it and its implications. Thus the whole Tiste Lionsen race have always been a bit vague.

The one thing that I have been left wondering though; is the lost children of the Toblakai. Didn't Siballe (spell?) have all the sacrificed kids ready to become an army? What has happened to them? The kids that are at the throne are with Minala, so we have to assume those kids are the ones that Kallam saved from crucifiction right?


message 8: by Rob, Quick Ben (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 1054 comments Mod
Lee wrote: " The kids that are at the throne are with Minala, so we have to assume those kids are the ones that Kallam saved from crucifiction right? "

That was my assumption.


message 9: by David Sven, Mortal Sword..Meow (new) - rated it 5 stars

David Sven (gorro) | 2042 comments Mod
Lee wrote: " Didn't Siballe (spell?) have all the sacrificed kids ready to become an army? What has happened to them? "

I believe they are still waiting in the Teblor lands - they watched him leave

‘One shall make it.’ This from Bairoth’s eldest brother.
Delum’s twin sister shrugged in reply and said, ‘We shall be here, then, upon that one’s return.’
‘So we shall.’



Silvio Curtis | 403 comments This introduced a lot of interesting characters we hadn't met yet, particularly Karsa. There was more of a central storyline - the Felisin-Tavore confrontation - than in the other books. Onrack and Trull didn't contribute much to the plot, but lots of world-building happened with them that I'm looking forward to seeing followed up, especially the Deragoth and the Eres.

Unfortunately, because I miscoordinated book ordering and travel, I'm a few thousand kilometers away from my copy of Midnight Tides, and won't be able to keep up with discussions for a couple weeks. I should catch up with the rest of you again in July sometime.


message 11: by David Sven, Mortal Sword..Meow (new) - rated it 5 stars

David Sven (gorro) | 2042 comments Mod
@Silvio Your insights and discussion will be missed for those couple of weeks.


Duffy Pratt | 354 comments I'm in the same boat. I'm visiting China. Midnight Tides is on my shelf back in Houston. I'll be catching up once I get back in a couple of weeks.


message 13: by Rob, Quick Ben (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 1054 comments Mod
I'll be about a week late in starting. I have my copy handy, but I want to finish The Blade Itself first.


The Crimson Fucker (tcf123) | 38 comments Shit! I'm trying to sycn with y'all! But I'm just not a group reader! Still! I'm a huge Karsa fanboy! And now it got worst! Third time around its the charm! There is so much that's driving me nuts! Even I used to think he was not the brightest cookie around... but the fucker its brilliant too! He figured out much of the imass on his own! Was able to put a lot of this and that into useful knowlege... but most important to me was the answer he gave to the seven when he was done making his sword... all of what he expects of a god... freaking brilliant!

Still! I came here to ask a question... does any of you knows anything about the knifes that Kallam got himself? The Fenn/wickan otataral infused thingies... I don't remember em in the chain of dogs! To whom did they belong to? Who made em? Anybody?


message 15: by David Sven, Mortal Sword..Meow (new) - rated it 5 stars

David Sven (gorro) | 2042 comments Mod
The Crimson Fucker wrote: "Still! I came here to ask a question... does any of you knows anything about the knifes that Kallam got himself? The Fenn/wickan otataral infused thingies... I don't remember em in the chain of dogs! To whom did they belong to? Who made em? Anybody? "

The Otataral Knife was Wickan made and invested with Toblakai Elder magic - POSSIBLY by Bellurdan as a gift POSSIBLY to Coltaine. It was subsequently looted or found it's way into the possession of a Pardu Ghost Slayer. And then to Kalam

Ch9
Can I think of a Wickan who might have earned that? Well, Coltaine – but he carried a single long-knife, unpatterned. Now, if only I knew more about that damned Thelomen Toblakai...
Of course, the High Mage named Bellurdan Skullcrusher was dead.



message 16: by Chaz (new) - rated it 5 stars

Chaz | 297 comments I loved this book. Karsa is so reprehensible at the beginning but is fascinating to journey with. Now I am constantly rooting for him to have his way. He has an abiding abhorrence of slavery and will NOT be pushed around by any upstart god. I suspect the Crippled God has made a big mistake by adding Karsa as his Knight of Chains.

Journeying with Fiddler was great fun as it always is and having Gesler&co alongside him was sweet gravy. The Tavore/Felisin showdown was heartbreaking and Pearl's response was perfect.

We saw lots of interesting stuff when with Trull and Onrack which promises to be important. I agree with Rob that these were the slower portions of the book but they were not unrewarding for me.

Love it and now I am LOVING Midnight Tides. Onwards!


message 17: by Rob, Quick Ben (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 1054 comments Mod
Chaz wrote: "We saw lots of interesting stuff when with Trull and Onrack which promises to be important. I agree with Rob that these were the slower portions of the book but they were not unrewarding for me."

I think as a re-reader they might be a lot more rewarding. As a first time reader they felt like a distraction.


message 18: by Dara (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dara (cmdrdara) | 210 comments My review. I just wasn't as crazy about this one as much as Deadhouse Gates and Memories of Ice.


Matthew (masupert) | 27 comments I found it interesting how much focus was put on Fiddler. He seemed like such a minor character in the previous three books.


message 20: by Rob, Quick Ben (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 1054 comments Mod
Matthew wrote: "I found it interesting how much focus was put on Fiddler. He seemed like such a minor character in the previous three books."

He's not moving forward.


message 21: by Dara (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dara (cmdrdara) | 210 comments Fiddler seemed minor in GOTM but I didn't think so in DG. At least in DG I had the feeling he would be back in later novels and have a greater role. I like him. He's no Quick Ben or Kalam but I like having Fid around.


Mikeiwo | 57 comments Fiddler is certainly in my top 5.

(view spoiler)


message 23: by David Sven, Mortal Sword..Meow (new) - rated it 5 stars

David Sven (gorro) | 2042 comments Mod
Zayne wrote: "but I expected this large scale ferocious battle to take place. It was a bit of a let down."

To have marched so far and not fought becomes an issue the 14th have to deal with when we next catch up with them - especially the fact that Tavore is still largely untested in battle.


message 24: by Lee, High Priest of Shadow (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lee (kiwifirst) | 1508 comments Mod
Lol, I hear you Zayne. I felt the same at the time. There was such a long build up and then a quick stab and it's all over. Like David said though, this is part of a important story for the army and this battle or lack of is important to what follows.


Silvio Curtis | 403 comments I thought the anticlimax wasn't the neatest way of making a plot, but it makes sense in terms of how the world works and in particular how the Whirlwind is characterized.


message 26: by Lee, High Priest of Shadow (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lee (kiwifirst) | 1508 comments Mod
LOL! Nope, a few of em make a guest appearance :)


message 27: by Lee, High Priest of Shadow (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lee (kiwifirst) | 1508 comments Mod
Every book you get at least a dozen new characters. But Midnight Tides which is next for you is pretty much ALL new characters. You will be starting all over again with a new part of this world, but it does play a hugely important part in the overall story.


Jeremy R | 8 comments Ok... I know that this is a bit of a weird thing to ask (especially since I'm not sure if this was said in MOI or HOC), but why did someone (sorry for being so vague, read this like a few months ago) say Cotillion was at the Chaining? Didn't he *just* ascend recently? After all, Dancer was supposedly assassinated about a decade ago, so surely he wasn't alive all those thousands of years ago. What am I missing here? How could he have been at the Chaining?


message 29: by Lee, High Priest of Shadow (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lee (kiwifirst) | 1508 comments Mod
Cotillion wasn't at the original chaining but he was definitely at the last chaining. I think that was with Daseem Ultor. I think the CG has been chained multiple times.


Jeremy R | 8 comments Thanks, that does make a little more sense. Also, is Karsa unique with his power among the Toblakai? Is he just especially strong for his race, or does his unusual strength have something to do with the Crippled God? If all Thelomen Toblakai can become that powerful (or at least close to that powerful).... well, the world is in for a lot. I do think this is related to the Crippled God; I think that with everything Karsa kills (and drags along with the chains attached to his soul or something) he becomes stronger. Now, if that's true, he just became a whole lot stronger after killing two hounds of darkness...


Scott  Hitchcock (lostinthewarrenofchaos) | 163 comments Currently through this book on my first read through.

Karsa being a threat to Hood by dragging all these souls behind him was interesting and the image of him dragging the two hounds heads behind him was awesome. Karsa becoming stronger with each kill is interesting and it also makes me wonder about a future confrontation with Rake who with the sword is the other person who has souls bound to him.

Did everybody feel the crucified dragon held in it's own little warren was the Crippled God in his soul taken form and the unrevealed names would have been Rake, Brood, Lady Envy....


message 32: by Lee, High Priest of Shadow (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lee (kiwifirst) | 1508 comments Mod
An interesting theory. I don't remember at any time was it implied that the CG was Elient though.


Scott  Hitchcock (lostinthewarrenofchaos) | 163 comments That's a good point. TCG fell from the sky so he might not be soletaken. I have a few additional theories on who that might be since I'm a few more books in now.


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