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Quest for Lost Heroes PDF, ePub eBook The Drenai stronghold had fallen. Now blood-hungry Nadir hordes spread desolation and despair across all the lands... ...even tiny Gothir, where slavers seized a young girl while the villagers looked the other way--all but the peasant boy Kiall. His unlikely rescue attempt would lead across the savage steppes and on through the Halls of Hell. The youth would face ferocious The Drenai stronghold had fallen. Now blood-hungry Nadir hordes spread desolation and despair across all the lands... ...even tiny Gothir, where slavers seized a young girl while the villagers looked the other way--all but the peasant boy Kiall. His unlikely rescue attempt would lead across the savage steppes and on through the Halls of Hell. The youth would face ferocious beasts, deadly warriors, and demons of the dark; he would emerge a man--or not emerge at all. But Kiall would not face these dangers alone. Heroes out of legend joined his quest: Chareos the Blademaster, Beltzer the Axeman, and the bowmen Finn and Maggrig. And one among their company hid a secret that could free the world of Nadir domination. That one was the Nadir Bane, the hope of the Drenai. That one was the Earl of Bronze. Thus did a search for a stolen slave girl become a quest that would shake the very world.

30 review for Quest for Lost Heroes

  1. 5 out of 5

    Mayim de Vries

    “The few against the many. It was a time of heroes.” This is the fourth Drenai novel, however, when it comes to the internal chronology of the saga, it is the eighth volume. This novel is proof that a book, despite its secondariness and being to a large extent a derivative, can be a very good read. The story takes place about twenty years after the events described in “The King Beyond the Gate.” After the fall of Dros Delnoch (presently Tanaka Castle) the Nadir flooded the Drenai lands, destroyin “The few against the many. It was a time of heroes.” This is the fourth Drenai novel, however, when it comes to the internal chronology of the saga, it is the eighth volume. This novel is proof that a book, despite its secondariness and being to a large extent a derivative, can be a very good read. The story takes place about twenty years after the events described in “The King Beyond the Gate.” After the fall of Dros Delnoch (presently Tanaka Castle) the Nadir flooded the Drenai lands, destroying, killing, raping and kidnapping. They attacked a small village and kidnapped women to sell them as slaves. Young Kiall, in love with one of the kidnapped, demands justice from the local princeling, and when he does not get it, decides to follow the bandits. He is accompanied by four legendary defenders of Bel-azar: Chareos the Blademaster, Beltzer the primitive warrior and two superb archers, Finn and Maggrig with absolute lack of social skills. The quest turns out to be longer and much more complicated, and its purpose is not as trivial as it might seem at first. “The hunt for pig-breeder’s daughter? Yes, I can almost hear your laughter.” We will not find anything new here. The brilliant Blademaster Chareos, typically for Gemmell, is a veteran of a legendary defence and has a tragic past. There is also a coming-to-age arc and other minor tropes for each of the questors (Let me pause here. Mr Gemmell uses this word throughout it book and I know he means well, but all I could see in the eye of my imagination were some random finance clerks!) with the motif of friendship permeating everything. We have a classic theme of the road very well known to all fantasy lovers and a quest that takes the protagonists to the heart of a hostile and dangerous land. What I liked about the book is that it is not as straightforward as the blurb would suggest. Quest for Lost Heroes is a novel in which all characters, even the secondary ones, have a role to fulfil. We follow the fate of both pawns, and hetmans, and the kings or queens. Mr Gemmell achieved here what he failed to do in the “The King Beyond the Gate”, he made me care about the characters; I kept my fingers crossed for them and I did believe deeply in their case. Also, the world is richer than in the previous instalments: In addition to the Drenai and the Nadir we will find Kiatze (Chinese/Japanese), Gothir (your average Westerners), and the Tattooed People from Beyond (a motif also present in Mr Gemmell’s other works). Different cultures, different understanding of honour, duty, and friendship; such diversity enriches the novel, and the characters are outlined very convincingly and realistically. “And now you are on a quest you do not understand, that will determine the fate of people you do not know.” On the cons side, the book is a repeated “save the girl” scheme (Druss-Rowenna, now Kiall-Ravenna) combined with “get the ring to Mordor” setting; there is a considerable dollop of YA since Kiall behaves like every immature teenager; and finally, be warned: purple eyes abound! Still, there is a huge chance you are going to enjoy the book even if you have not read anything else in the cycle, and indeed the knowledge of previous instalments is not necessary. “Quest for Lost Heroes” is a novel representing good old high fantasy which is suitable for both fans of the Drenai Saga as well as for “ordinary” fans of the genre. It gives food for thought, entertains, teaches and does not let you get bored. Regardless of whether you know the previous volumes of the cycle (or other Gemmell’s books) or would it be your first contact with this author, I’d encourage you to give it a chance. --- Also in The Drenai Saga: 1. Legend ★★★★★ 2. The King Beyond the Gate ★★☆☆☆ 3. Waylander ★★★☆☆ 5. In the Realm of the Wolf ★★★☆☆ 6. The First Chronicles of Druss the Legend ★★★★☆ 7. The Legend of Deathwalker ★★★★☆ 8. Winter Warriors ★★★☆☆ 9. Hero in the Shadows ★★★★★ 10. White Wolf RTC 11. The Swords of Night and Day RTC

  2. 4 out of 5

    Kristalia

    Final rating: 4.5/5 stars Oh boy. Where do I even start. I know! Let's start with love. Uncoditional love... Brotherly love... Cofigthers love... Friendship love... Sibling love (and hate)... unrequited love... All of these are factors that gather one particular group to search for missing captive women, or in this case, only one, Ravena. ► STORY: Kiall, from their village, cannot stand by and do nothing while their women are taken away, so he goes on quest and meets Chareos the Blademaster, Beltzer th Final rating: 4.5/5 stars Oh boy. Where do I even start. I know! Let's start with love. Uncoditional love... Brotherly love... Cofigthers love... Friendship love... Sibling love (and hate)... unrequited love... All of these are factors that gather one particular group to search for missing captive women, or in this case, only one, Ravena. ► STORY: Kiall, from their village, cannot stand by and do nothing while their women are taken away, so he goes on quest and meets Chareos the Blademaster, Beltzer the Axeman, and the bowmen Finn and Maggrig (who are so far my favorites, along with Chareos). And in their journey they will face Jungir, son of Tenaka-khan and his daughter Tanaki, who is courageous, noble and brave... as much as she can be. ► CHARACTERS: All of the characters in the main party were interesting. I loved their dynamics, their relationships and conversations. For example the fact that Finn and Maggrig live alone on the mountain because Finn dislikes people, and yet the only person he does love is Maggrig, who is younger than him and is his only support when they were split. Chareos doesn't know what to do with his life so he accepts the quest from 19y.o. Kiall, who is a dreamer and your actual nice guy no one deserves. And Beltzer who ruined his own life, yet would rise when the occasion came. Once he likes you, he will be there for you, always. ► OVERALL: These books are filled with brutallity, slave trading, demons, genocid of an entire race, another world, marriages, politics, foreign diplomacies, revenge and ghosts of the past that cannot be silenced. I will be honest, I cried in some parts. But NOTHING will ever beat the first book in the series, the Legend. And yet all of these books are greatly connected and this is happening only 20 years later after the second book, The King beyond the gate, ended. This series is so worth it. Honestly. OTHER IMPORTANT INFO: ⚠ Standalone: Yes, but connected to previous books in Drenai Saga. ⚠ Point of View: Third POV, multiply characters. ⚠ Cliffhanger: No ⚠ Triggers: (view spoiler)[gang rape - not explicit but you are well aware it's happening and that it has happened. (hide spoiler)] ⚠ Love triangle: No ⚠ Angst: yes ⚠ Supernatural: demons, ghosts, magic, etc ⚠ Explicit content: Not graphical, but you know it's happening ⚠ Ending type: (view spoiler)[bitersweet, not everyone end up alive (hide spoiler)] ⚠ Recommended: Yes ► REVIEW(S) RELATED TO THIS BOOK: ◈ Legend (Drenai Saga, #1) ◈ Waylander (Drenai Saga, #3) ◈ Quest for Lost Heroes (The Drenai Saga, #4)

  3. 5 out of 5

    Johnny

    Quest for Lost Heroes is only the second fantasy novel by David Gemmell that I have read. I should probably read more. I remember the first one, Legend, as being realistic and gritty. Prior to my reading of Game of Thrones, I thought it captured the filth and stench of medieval life better than anything I had read. I liked the fact that Gemmell captured heroism without glorifying battle and that he didn’t oversimplify the quests of his protagonist(s) with nationalistic/racist slogans. His charac Quest for Lost Heroes is only the second fantasy novel by David Gemmell that I have read. I should probably read more. I remember the first one, Legend, as being realistic and gritty. Prior to my reading of Game of Thrones, I thought it captured the filth and stench of medieval life better than anything I had read. I liked the fact that Gemmell captured heroism without glorifying battle and that he didn’t oversimplify the quests of his protagonist(s) with nationalistic/racist slogans. His characters did what did not from any particular inner virtue but because they sensed a need to do it. That tradition continues in Quest for Lost Heroes. In fact, some of the cast of characters overlap (for a good reason) and they still don’t have any unifying message as to how they did what they did or how they became heroes. Although the veteran characters from previous books are the ones who find closure in Quest for Lost Heroes, there is a new character who desires to be a hero. Indeed, this young protagonist is determined to not only bring about epic justice with his own hand, but shed the mantle of “dreamer” that he has worn for so long. He discovers that it is more difficult to move from dreams to reality, ideal to substance, insignificance to some sort of significance than he thought possible. He makes mistakes. He costs lives as a result of his mistakes, but he establishes a benchmark for heroism despite lack of consummate skill (in anything). That is the tale that makes Quest for Lost Heroes worth reading. As Kiall learns what really matters, one hopes the reader also learns some of the virtues that truly matter in life. Yet, Gemmell’s writings always seem to have a sadness which pervades them. Protagonists seem always to be filled with regrets, missed opportunities, and unrequited hopes. Sometimes, they don’t even know why they have taken on the quests they’ve “chosen” (or perhaps, the quests have chosen them). The main quest in Quest for Lost Heroes revolves around the rescue of a beautiful farmer’s daughter who doesn’t seem either worth rescuing or even a true object of affection for the young hero. Is it guilt or love or some combination that drives this rescue? Is it fate or is it a passion for justice? These are complex motivations intertwined in a significant way by Gemmell. In fact, I liked the way he touched on this in a conversation between two of the aging heroes of the title: “’Evil will never be countered while good men do nothing.’ ‘Then we are nothing but a pair of fools,’ declared Chareos. … ‘Win or lose, we achieve nothing that the world would understand,’ said Finn. ‘But then, the world does not matter,’ answered Chareos, rising. ‘Indeed, it does not,’ Finn replied, ‘It is good to understand that.’” (p. 213) These are grizzled, world-weary “heroes” and they don’t offer jejune platitudes. There was even a cautionary proverb that I particularly liked: “…the path to evil often begins with righteous anger.” (p. 221) In short, I truly enjoyed Quest for Lost Heroes with its maturing of young Kiall and the veterans discovering something of what it means to be “the ghosts yet to be.”

  4. 5 out of 5

    Lyn* Nomad *Worlds await*

    I started this book with a pang in my heart because I knew that my favorite half-Nadir, half-Drenai, Tenaka Khan was dead. His son was now the Khan of the Nadir and his daughter, Tanaki, exiled. Having conquered the Drenai, the Nadir were now the ruling nation in power. This story brought to my mind the image of a snowball rolling down a hill, gathering mass and momentum until at the bottom it’s the size of a mountain, headed on a collision course. How the search for one common woman led to a gra I started this book with a pang in my heart because I knew that my favorite half-Nadir, half-Drenai, Tenaka Khan was dead. His son was now the Khan of the Nadir and his daughter, Tanaki, exiled. Having conquered the Drenai, the Nadir were now the ruling nation in power. This story brought to my mind the image of a snowball rolling down a hill, gathering mass and momentum until at the bottom it’s the size of a mountain, headed on a collision course. How the search for one common woman led to a grander scheme. QFLH was filled with unlikely heroes who had a lot of personal demons to face and complicated events, appearing fragmented but were instead all part of a bigger picture. There was adventure and magic and mayhem. Unthinkable atrocities and heartbreak. And Tenaka Khan, decent and noble as always, even in death. Posted on Blog

  5. 4 out of 5

    Al Datum

    I have read a lot of fantasy books through the years. Recently, it seems the trend is toward endless series, each volume of which is the size of War and Peace. Refreshingly, Gemmell tells his stories in much fewer pages, and his stories end up being some of the most well-written in modern fantasy literature. One thing I love about Gemmell is how his stories are all self-contained. They have definite endings and you can finish one, knowing you won't have a cliffhanger forcing you to rush out and b I have read a lot of fantasy books through the years. Recently, it seems the trend is toward endless series, each volume of which is the size of War and Peace. Refreshingly, Gemmell tells his stories in much fewer pages, and his stories end up being some of the most well-written in modern fantasy literature. One thing I love about Gemmell is how his stories are all self-contained. They have definite endings and you can finish one, knowing you won't have a cliffhanger forcing you to rush out and buy the next volume immediately. As to the story length, I once heard someone ask "How long should a novel be?" and the answer was "long enough to tell the story". Gemmell follows this advice, making his books long enough to tell their story, and not padding it with needless scenes just to beef up the book's size. Gemmell is also a master of atmosphere. He is excellent at depicting ancient fortresses, dank caverns, primeval forests, and also the pitched intensity of battle. He makes believable characters that don't fit exactly into the stereotypes we've come to expect from Tolkien. Instead, his characters are flawed, though interesting and ultimately redeemable. Gemmell writes his books in multi-volume series, but the different volumes in a series may take place dozens or even hundreds of years apart in time (the Bloodstone series even starts in ancient England for two books and then shifts to post-apocalyptic America for the rest of the stories). This allows Gemmell to explore the passage of time, as well as the rise and fall of empires as his stories unfold. There are books which carry his characters over from previous stories (John Shannow is an epic character, as is Druss the Legend). But no matter whether the same characters appear from one story to another, you will still find each book to be self-contained, completely readable, and a huge amount of fun. Pick up the first volume of any of Gemmell's series (start with Legend, the beginning of his Drenai saga) and see if you don't agree.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Evgeny

    The Nadir raiders captured young women from a small village. A young romantic man from this same village happened to be in love with one of them (it was a one-sided love). He set out on a hopeless quest to rescue his love. He was lucky as several great heroes who survived the last onslaught of Nadir hordes joined him out of sheer boredom - mostly. Still a few expert fighters do not make a task of finding a woman in vast Nadir steppes and getting out with her alive any easier. In fact, the compan The Nadir raiders captured young women from a small village. A young romantic man from this same village happened to be in love with one of them (it was a one-sided love). He set out on a hopeless quest to rescue his love. He was lucky as several great heroes who survived the last onslaught of Nadir hordes joined him out of sheer boredom - mostly. Still a few expert fighters do not make a task of finding a woman in vast Nadir steppes and getting out with her alive any easier. In fact, the company was given a prophesy that they would fail in their quest in the beginning of their journey. I was about to give up on the series at this point. The first three books had almost the same main plot: an overwhelming force is trying to conquer Drenai lands only to be foiled by great sacrifices of the defenders. This book neither have any siege battles, no any grand army against another (not so grand) army fights. On the down side I still do not quite understand the motivation of the veterans to join the quest. When people choose death they usually have more reasons than pure boredom. MINOR SPOILER follows: it also turned out in the end the quest was somewhat useless and I really do not understand why people did some additional tasks - considering one of them was a seer who should be able to see that these tasks were not in their best interests. The final verdict should be 3.5 stars: at least this book made me want to continue reading the series which I was sure I will abandon after this installment.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Lundos

    Back to Gemmell after a while and it's nice to see one of his classic conundrums: "What is the most important to you, duty or freedom?" It's another tale of love, duty, honour and friendship, where we have a young guy learning the ropes from the older, cynical, experienced guys. "The few against the many. It was a time of heroes." "It's a time for survivors." The first half is filled with cyclical references to life, death, progress and society, but the last part is more Gemmell, though, we don't h Back to Gemmell after a while and it's nice to see one of his classic conundrums: "What is the most important to you, duty or freedom?" It's another tale of love, duty, honour and friendship, where we have a young guy learning the ropes from the older, cynical, experienced guys. "The few against the many. It was a time of heroes." "It's a time for survivors." The first half is filled with cyclical references to life, death, progress and society, but the last part is more Gemmell, though, we don't have his 'classical' final stand in the same as the other books. Overall, it's not as strong as the previous books about Drenai, but Gemmell does write in a way I like.

  8. 4 out of 5

    David

    Talk about jumping into the middle of a series.. Okay, apparently, I read the first two books of this series a long time ago. However, I was able to jump into this one and not feel like I was missing anything. Really-- this was was almost a stand alone story. I remember meeting the big axe wielding hero from the earlier books... so I was not completely lost. The big battle that made the guys our heroes was covered in those, but not reading them probably would not affect the reader too terribly. On Talk about jumping into the middle of a series.. Okay, apparently, I read the first two books of this series a long time ago. However, I was able to jump into this one and not feel like I was missing anything. Really-- this was was almost a stand alone story. I remember meeting the big axe wielding hero from the earlier books... so I was not completely lost. The big battle that made the guys our heroes was covered in those, but not reading them probably would not affect the reader too terribly. One of the things I liked about this book was that the author used little tricks to "condense" the book from normal fantasy novels. For example, his actions sequences are quick and decisive. He uses a "Spirit Path" and a "Magic Gateway" to move his characters quickly from one territory to another-- thus condensing the normal journey and many campfire conversations--- At times, this was a little bit annoying.. at others-- well-- it was a relief-- If this was written by George R.R. Martin it would have been written into a seven volume series-- with each book well over 600 pages... Also, Gemmell doesn't shy away from subjects like rape or sex-- but he also doesn't make them the centerpiece of his works... Also, Martin is not afraid to kill off characters. Discovering that this is # 4 of a series (and I do think I read the first 2, possibly the third) causes me to look forward to the next in the series. It also made me decide to try to fill in the gaps of my Rigante collection so that I can get to that. A really decent fantasy that primarily focuses on the action-- but the magic becomes sort of a Deus Ex Machina to move the story along and for me that made it better than average.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Graham

    Did Gemmell ever write a bad book? I've made it my business to find out, and so far, so good. QUEST FOR LOST HEROES is another in his Drenai saga which began with the excellent LEGEND and shows no signs of slowing down at this stage. As the title would imply, this book adopts a quest/journey narrative and casts a band of ageing one-were-heroes as its leads. The story is slight and the characters fill out the usual archetypes, but as usual Gemmell uses this background as a springboard for his two Did Gemmell ever write a bad book? I've made it my business to find out, and so far, so good. QUEST FOR LOST HEROES is another in his Drenai saga which began with the excellent LEGEND and shows no signs of slowing down at this stage. As the title would imply, this book adopts a quest/journey narrative and casts a band of ageing one-were-heroes as its leads. The story is slight and the characters fill out the usual archetypes, but as usual Gemmell uses this background as a springboard for his two main concerns: action and philosophy. The many action sequences are as frequent and varied as ever. Gemmell has a knack for action that lifts him above every other author I've encountered: his fights are short, bloody and achieve a level of style and realism that few other authors can match up to. It may be because Gemmell actually researched his fight scenes, heading out into his back garden to practise with makeshift weaponry, but he's bloody good. The philosophical side to the story is the icing on the cake, really. Once more, Gemmell questions the true nature of heroism vs. reality, and looks into the minds of the guys behind the legends. What he finds isn't very nice, but it does make for great reading, especially Druss-alike Beltzer. Despite the simplicity of his characters, he makes what happens to them moving beyond belief and his knack for pithy dialogue is used in spades. If I had to find a fault with this book, it would be its shortness; the adventure comes to an end all too soon, and the ending feels a little rushed in its efforts to tie up all the loose ends. Never mind - QUEST FOR LOST HEROES is still a fine read from one of my top authors of all time.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Cameron

    Another good, not mind blowing entry for the Drenai Series. At this point, it seems that all of Gemmell's books (or atleast this series) are going to be fast paced, classical fantasy stories. He did change up the plot from the first two novels, as there was no main characters defending against a siege against all the odds, so that was nice. These books remind me of the Redwall books from my childhood: Each book can be read as a stand alone, there are always descandants/relatives of characters from Another good, not mind blowing entry for the Drenai Series. At this point, it seems that all of Gemmell's books (or atleast this series) are going to be fast paced, classical fantasy stories. He did change up the plot from the first two novels, as there was no main characters defending against a siege against all the odds, so that was nice. These books remind me of the Redwall books from my childhood: Each book can be read as a stand alone, there are always descandants/relatives of characters from previous books, and even though the reader has heard the same story before... the author has a way of captivating his audience. Quickly becoming my go to series after I read long, cerebral books that make my brain hurt (yes, I'm looking at you Steven Erikson).

  11. 5 out of 5

    Rob

    Book 4 of the Drenai introduced more fantasy elements than I would have liked, but the story, characters, and writing are all still vintage David Gemmell. Absolutely excellent. I love the new host of "washed up" heroes, Chareos, Beltzer, Finn, and Maggrig. The Nadir with a tie-in to our friend from book 2, Tenaka Kahn, is also a strong element. The introduction of the Chinese power, Kiatze, from the west was great. I expect them to see more action in future novels in the series. A Quest for Lost Book 4 of the Drenai introduced more fantasy elements than I would have liked, but the story, characters, and writing are all still vintage David Gemmell. Absolutely excellent. I love the new host of "washed up" heroes, Chareos, Beltzer, Finn, and Maggrig. The Nadir with a tie-in to our friend from book 2, Tenaka Kahn, is also a strong element. The introduction of the Chinese power, Kiatze, from the west was great. I expect them to see more action in future novels in the series. A Quest for Lost Heroes gives us new, reminds of old, and introduces several storylines that we can expect to see throughout the remainder of the Drenai saga.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jayne

    I thought that I had read all of Gemmell's novels so it was a nice surprise to come across this one and discover that I hadn't. Especially since, I had no business buying this in the first place because we are moving and trying to divest ourselves of as many books as possible. But he's one of my favourite authors, and it was a buy one, get one free deal.... for 1 euro. Seriously, who could resist. This one goes to the top of my Gemmell novels. He's good at writing about seemingly unlikeable chara I thought that I had read all of Gemmell's novels so it was a nice surprise to come across this one and discover that I hadn't. Especially since, I had no business buying this in the first place because we are moving and trying to divest ourselves of as many books as possible. But he's one of my favourite authors, and it was a buy one, get one free deal.... for 1 euro. Seriously, who could resist. This one goes to the top of my Gemmell novels. He's good at writing about seemingly unlikeable characters and then peeling away the layers to show that there is more to them.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    Quest for Lost Heroes (The Drenai Saga, #4), David Gemmell

  14. 5 out of 5

    Angela

    4 Stars I have really enjoyed revisiting this book/series. I chose this series as part f my reading challenge for this year, and as a buddy read with one of my colleagues. Even though the first book in the series was released in 1984 (and the latest in 2000) the series has pretty much stood the test of time. It is a fantastic action adventure fantasy- with superb characters and brilliant world building, which brings the whole story/series to life. I have fond memories of discovering this series an 4 Stars I have really enjoyed revisiting this book/series. I chose this series as part f my reading challenge for this year, and as a buddy read with one of my colleagues. Even though the first book in the series was released in 1984 (and the latest in 2000) the series has pretty much stood the test of time. It is a fantastic action adventure fantasy- with superb characters and brilliant world building, which brings the whole story/series to life. I have fond memories of discovering this series and excitedly awaiting each new instalment. My reading buddy hadn’t read the series before, but has also enjoyed discovering David Gemmell’s work/s.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jen

    Yet another awesome book from David Gemmell! This one isn't his best work, but it will do well enough. This story fits in the time-line as a post-King Beyond the Gate time where Tenaka Khan actually succeeds in overthrowing the Drenai. It tells of a journey into Nadir territory, nominally to rescue a peasant girl, but it ends up being so much more. There is an odd making of bed fellows where the peasant boy leading the quest for his kid-love manages to recruit a team of battle hardened warriors. T Yet another awesome book from David Gemmell! This one isn't his best work, but it will do well enough. This story fits in the time-line as a post-King Beyond the Gate time where Tenaka Khan actually succeeds in overthrowing the Drenai. It tells of a journey into Nadir territory, nominally to rescue a peasant girl, but it ends up being so much more. There is an odd making of bed fellows where the peasant boy leading the quest for his kid-love manages to recruit a team of battle hardened warriors. The author never explains the warriors' reasons for joining the quest, but additionally makes not hints, so as a result the reader is simply asked to suspend disbelief: not something so easily done. Notably absent: The Thirty. In this book, you get greater evidence for your Nadir = Huns (as in Attila the) parallel that originally started by mentioning them to be nomadic people of the steppes with slanted eyes. You get to meet their KungFu wielding Chinese counterparts who are previously unreferenced. Also, you get to meet South American great empire counterparts (as in Aztecs) who magic over to hang out in East Asia ... er ... the Nadir Steppes. Let's face it, in Waylander, we already met an African analogue. All that remains yet to be revealed in terms of epic empires is a Viking analogue and perhaps that shall come in future books. (I am assuming that the Drenai or the other empires surrounding it neatly cover "Western" culture such as European and Arabic societies.)

  16. 4 out of 5

    Quintin Zimmermann

    In Quest for Lost Heroes, David Gemmell again jumps ahead many years, thereby giving The Drenai Saga truly epic scope and historical context. However, this time round, Gemmell's heroes are not as well-rounded. Kiall, the foil that launches this adventure, is your stereotypical villager, but his niave sweetness is not endearing and his motivations are as defined as mud. Chareos does not have the same depth as Ananais and Beltzer is a poor man's Druss. The outsider this time is Chen-tsu, but he pal In Quest for Lost Heroes, David Gemmell again jumps ahead many years, thereby giving The Drenai Saga truly epic scope and historical context. However, this time round, Gemmell's heroes are not as well-rounded. Kiall, the foil that launches this adventure, is your stereotypical villager, but his niave sweetness is not endearing and his motivations are as defined as mud. Chareos does not have the same depth as Ananais and Beltzer is a poor man's Druss. The outsider this time is Chen-tsu, but he pales into comparison to the enigmatic Pagan. The deep relationship between the bowmen, Finn and Maggrig is never really defined by Gemmell and perhaps the novel is poorer for it. Certainly a rollicking adventure, David Gemmell style, but certainly not one of his best.

  17. 5 out of 5

    LemLems

    Ok I'm done with this guy. I've been slogging my way through the Drenai books without much enjoyment - because I foolishly bought them all in a sale before reading any of them. Aside from the repetitiveness, lopsided pacing and two dimensional characters one of my issues with the series has been the overuse and excusing of sexual violence and the threat of sexual violence against female characters - seriously, find a new plot device. In this book however he surpasses himself with a scene of sexu Ok I'm done with this guy. I've been slogging my way through the Drenai books without much enjoyment - because I foolishly bought them all in a sale before reading any of them. Aside from the repetitiveness, lopsided pacing and two dimensional characters one of my issues with the series has been the overuse and excusing of sexual violence and the threat of sexual violence against female characters - seriously, find a new plot device. In this book however he surpasses himself with a scene of sexual violence so awful that it actually made me feel sick to my stomach - followed by his traditional bit of one character then excusing the perpetrators to another. So that's the last straw - I'm done with these books and this author

  18. 4 out of 5

    DemetraP

    This was a great epic fantasy. You have to read the books in order though. The author refers to a lot of previous events and does not explain them for new readers. The hero wants to rescue a woman who was kidnapped from his village by slavers. He's in love with her. Along the way, he stumbles into a legendary band of former heroes (from the legendary battle of Bel-azar) who agree to help him rescue her. A quest full of adventure, hardship, friendship, and action. Note: The epilogue to this book w This was a great epic fantasy. You have to read the books in order though. The author refers to a lot of previous events and does not explain them for new readers. The hero wants to rescue a woman who was kidnapped from his village by slavers. He's in love with her. Along the way, he stumbles into a legendary band of former heroes (from the legendary battle of Bel-azar) who agree to help him rescue her. A quest full of adventure, hardship, friendship, and action. Note: The epilogue to this book was really good and catches you up on what everyone is up to.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Joey Cruz

    The first heroic fantasy novel I ever read, given to me by my 9th grade history teacher who was getting rid of a bunch of old books. I wish I could go back and thank Mrs. Yaeger for that. This book was instrumental in turning me into the fantasy fan I am today. Really want to go back and read it again, but it's in a box back at my father's place. It was the perfect story for a 15 year old mind curious about fantasy and looking to learn more.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Todd

    I greatly enjoy that Gemmell writes about aging heroes. Gemmell seems to have stepped away from his usual focus on the Thirty's good vs. evil battles. This is a fun story and well worth reading.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Arckhangelos

    French review of this book : https://arckhangelos.wordpress.com/20...

  22. 5 out of 5

    Shaitarn .

    3.5 stars. The fortress of Dros Delnoch has fallen and the Drenai nation have been conquered by the vicious Nadir (they can’t complain they were warned – the Nadir have been a threat for the previous three books after all). In the tiny realm of Gothir, a young village girl – the pig-breeder’s daughter, no less – is kidnapped by slavers and a peasant boy from the same village, with a head full of heroic dreams and fancying himself in love with the girl, sets off to rescue her. On the way he is joi 3.5 stars. The fortress of Dros Delnoch has fallen and the Drenai nation have been conquered by the vicious Nadir (they can’t complain they were warned – the Nadir have been a threat for the previous three books after all). In the tiny realm of Gothir, a young village girl – the pig-breeder’s daughter, no less – is kidnapped by slavers and a peasant boy from the same village, with a head full of heroic dreams and fancying himself in love with the girl, sets off to rescue her. On the way he is joined by four legendary heroes from a battle fought over a decade ago: Chareos the Blademaster, Beltzer the axeman and Finn and Maggrig, archers of amazing skill. This has many of the tropes you may recognise from other Gemmell novels: the veteran heroes taking on one last quest, a young lad coming of age, demons, shamanism and the Nadir. The world opens up in this one – so much so that I looked up a map of the world online (it still doesn’t make much sense). As well as the Drenai and the Nadir (not!Mongol) hordes we also have characters from the not!China land of Chiatze (complete with wild martial arts skills) and a brief journey through a portal to the jungle lands of the Tattooed People, who are being wiped out by the Azhtacs (with gold weapons, which had me shouting ‘that can’t happen!’ at the page). This sounds like a criticism, but it isn’t, not really. The book has the usual Gemmell strengths: it’s fast moving with plenty of very good action scenes. We also have a quest motif and a very nice feel for the comradeship that binds the heroes. The archers, Finn and Maggrig, seem to have a very close relationship – whether they’re a romantic couple or just close friends is unclear, but I rather liked that no one else seemed bothered by the exact status of their relationship – as possible homosexuality hasn’t always been treated well in fantasy, it’s nice to see a book from this era (it was published in 1990) dealing with this so well. Overall it was a very enjoyable read and one that I recommend.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    Let me start by saying I had no idea this was part of a series until I was about a third of the way through, or so; I had someone insist I should borrow and read this book who didn't specify it wasn't the first. Without looking it up here on Goodreads, I never would have known it wasn't a standalone, so props to the author on making a self-contained story. I really appreciated that the tale was primarily focused on a bunch of middle aged has-been warriors. Sure, there was the obligatory "young pe Let me start by saying I had no idea this was part of a series until I was about a third of the way through, or so; I had someone insist I should borrow and read this book who didn't specify it wasn't the first. Without looking it up here on Goodreads, I never would have known it wasn't a standalone, so props to the author on making a self-contained story. I really appreciated that the tale was primarily focused on a bunch of middle aged has-been warriors. Sure, there was the obligatory "young person forced into a heroic role" trope, but I felt the story was mostly carried by Chareos and crew. That being said, the author's creativity didn't really make up for iffy writing. The dialogue (and in the way of most books from this era, it was mostly dialogue) was incredibly choppy and forced. The characters themselves didn't feel particularly fleshed out and frankly, based on the description of some of them, the author had no idea who they were supposed to be. (I mean, describing Goody-Two-Shoes-Chareos as "ill-tempered?" You gotta be kidding me.) There was definitely some nobility to the protagonists (mostly Chareos and co.), but the bad guys were truly very shallow and typical. Overall, I'm not rushing out to find the rest of the series--this one was enough for me.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Chirag Patel

    This book has a feel that's very different to the rest of the classic fantasy Drenai books. On the surface, it's very similar; it concerns a group of heroes, mostly over the hill with one youngster, who embark on a hopeless quest. So far, so Gemmell. The difference is in two things; a deep humanity and a lack of technical proficiency that combine to give this book a very different undertone to the others. The quest these heroes are on is meaningless. The moments of glory are trivial, at best. The i This book has a feel that's very different to the rest of the classic fantasy Drenai books. On the surface, it's very similar; it concerns a group of heroes, mostly over the hill with one youngster, who embark on a hopeless quest. So far, so Gemmell. The difference is in two things; a deep humanity and a lack of technical proficiency that combine to give this book a very different undertone to the others. The quest these heroes are on is meaningless. The moments of glory are trivial, at best. The inhumanity they encounter is more human, and less fantasy, than in any of the others. Along with this, there is what at first glance is a crudeness to the story. Things happen more randomly, events are more sudden and transitory... the book jumps around a lot more than the steady flow of the other works. In the end I think both of these aspects are due to an experiment in writing a more honest, and more human, fantasy book. For me, this is the peak of Gemmell's work with the forlorn, and though I'm glad he goes back to his usual themed and flow after this, there's something special about this one.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Will

    I recently made a visual poster of the reading order and chronology to help me (and you) with what's when: The book is typical Gemmell, a naive young man sets out to rescue the (not-quite) love of his life. He's accompanied by ageing heroes who don't really fit into peaceful life. The story isn't my favourite one, but it's a fun read and the characters are likable for the most part. Like his other books, there is a lot of violence and some disturbing scenes (a ton of murder, torture and a rape s I recently made a visual poster of the reading order and chronology to help me (and you) with what's when: The book is typical Gemmell, a naive young man sets out to rescue the (not-quite) love of his life. He's accompanied by ageing heroes who don't really fit into peaceful life. The story isn't my favourite one, but it's a fun read and the characters are likable for the most part. Like his other books, there is a lot of violence and some disturbing scenes (a ton of murder, torture and a rape scene). If those are likely to bother you then definitely don't read.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Tiberiu Pana

    Another solid book in the Drenai saga. As most of the books in the series, it starts slowly but picks up speed and by the time you get to 70% it explodes and wish you were at 20% not 70%! Alas that is not possible and you devour the last pages, discovering the tragic fate (for some) of the characters. Mr Gemmell certainly likes to dwelve into human emotions and exploit the extremities. He's done that in all of his books, but in this one and the previous chronological one he went full on. Even thou Another solid book in the Drenai saga. As most of the books in the series, it starts slowly but picks up speed and by the time you get to 70% it explodes and wish you were at 20% not 70%! Alas that is not possible and you devour the last pages, discovering the tragic fate (for some) of the characters. Mr Gemmell certainly likes to dwelve into human emotions and exploit the extremities. He's done that in all of his books, but in this one and the previous chronological one he went full on. Even though our beloved characters from Legend are done are dusted (are they? :D), Gemmell always manages to invent new ones that are no inferior to the first ones and I absolute love that. I just can't lower my ratings for these books!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sean Helms

    A simple quest for the rescue of a pig farmer's daughter by a love-struck villager snowballs into much more as he is joined by, not one hero of renown but four. An adventures ensues that is beyond the imagination of the village youth. There are battles against implacable steppe warriors, a deadly shaman, shades of the dead and even demons. By the end the quest has become so twisted one can in no way have predicted how everything would turn out. A good story and great characters as expected from M A simple quest for the rescue of a pig farmer's daughter by a love-struck villager snowballs into much more as he is joined by, not one hero of renown but four. An adventures ensues that is beyond the imagination of the village youth. There are battles against implacable steppe warriors, a deadly shaman, shades of the dead and even demons. By the end the quest has become so twisted one can in no way have predicted how everything would turn out. A good story and great characters as expected from Master Gemmell.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Benj

    I liked the idea of people who were heroes a generation before having gone to seed a bit, but rousing themselves for one last quest. However, they were all still too excellent at their skills, which I felt rather defeated the point. But it was still an excellent read which I couldn't put down, and read in a single day.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Gerard Lionel

    I'm on a quest to read Drenai Saga, and my critic is becoming harsh with each number... Plots are similar, except the characters, it seems to me the author is proposing more a "framework" than a completion, sort of lazy? Otherwise it keeps an easy readable, book.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Adam Lofthouse

    Sacrilege, I know, but I'm still working my way through Gemmell's fantastic book. This one, as with the first three, is utterly brilliant. Engaging characters, a well thought out plot, and of course a siege! Might be my favourite of the series so far.

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