Stonewielder: A Novel of the Malazan Empire (Novels of the Malazan Empire)
Ian C. Esslemont
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Greymane believed he'd outrun his past. With his school for swordsmanship in Falar, he was looking forward to a quiet life, although his colleague Kyle wasn't as enamoured with life outside the mercenary company, the Crimson Guard. However, it seems it is not so easy for an ex-Fist of the Malazan Empire to disappear, especially one under sentence of death from that same Empire.
For there is a new Emperor on the throne of Malaz, and he is dwelling on the ignominy that is the Empire's failed invasion of the Korel subcontinent. In the vaults beneath Unta, the Imperial capital, lie the answers to that disaster. And out of this buried history surfaces the name Stonewielder.
In Korel, Lord Protector Hiam, commander of the Stormguard, faces the potential annihilation of all that he holds dear. With few remaining men and a crumbling stone wall that has seen better days, he confronts an ancient enemy: the sea-borne Stormriders have returned.
Religious war also threatens these lands. The cult of the Blessed Lady, which had stood firm against the Riders for millennia, now seeks to eradicate its rivals. And as chaos looms, a local magistrate investigating a series of murders suddenly finds himself at the heart of a far more ancient and terrifying crime – one that has tainted an entire land....
Stonewielder is an enthralling new chapter in the epic story of a thrillingly imagined world that takes place in the timeline right after the New York Times bestseller Dust of Dreams left off.
late. Already many deny the Lady in your name. With or without you, it has begun. Your life these last few years has been nothing but denial and flight. Are you not tired of fleeing?’ That last comment stopped him; but he did not turn round. After a pause, he continued on. No matter. Let the religion-mad fool rant. Faiths! Name one other thing that has brought more misery and murder into the world! That day they continued the long march north. Farmlands gave way to rolling pasture, copses
Yeull sank back into his chair. ‘What’s that? The Moranth? Ussü – no ships have been sent. Nor will they ever be sent.’ Ussü felt as if he’d been slapped. He stared, open-mouthed. So shocked was he that he almost took the man by his collar and shook him. ‘What? I do not see—’ Yeull roused himself, furious once more. ‘See? See? You do not see? Who are the Malazan allies in this, Ussü? Did you not see those reports?’ ‘Yes. The Moranth, but—’ ‘Yes! The Moranth. Exactly! They cannot be trusted.
mouth, sighed. ‘Damned useless is what it is.’ ‘Useless?’ Waving aside all discussion, Orjin crossed to a bench, sat heavily. As his leg was steadily numbing Kyle decided to join him. He took the gourd and sipped to wet his caked mouth, spat. ‘So? Did the Riders give it to you?’ Orjin nodded his slow assent. ‘Yeah. They gave it to me. Not for any damned pact or deal or anything. We just talked and they gave it to me.’ ‘Just like that.’ The man turned his head to glare one-eyed. ‘Don’t be
administration. Frustration was not the word. Failure, perhaps, came closer to describing the acid bite in Ussü’s stomach and soul whenever his thoughts turned to it. He had failed his superiors, each commander in turn, failed in attaining his one assigned task: achieving Malazan domination in this theatre. Decades ago, before the invasion fleet left Unta, Kellanved himself had set the task upon him. He remembered his surprise and terror that day, so long ago now, when the old ogre had taken his
myself,’ she ground out. Clearly she was even more put out than Rillish; her pale round face glistened with sweat even in this cool air, and her hands were clamped to her sides. ‘I have a horror of this,’ she hissed. ‘Of what?’ ‘Warren travel.’ Now Rillish understood and he felt his mouth crook up in dry irony. ‘I have no fond memories of it myself.’ The two cadre mages clapped their hands and motioned them aside. Facing one another, they began tracing an intricate series of gestures and