22 May, 2019

Review - Memories of Ice (Malazan Book of the Fallen #3) by Steven Erikson

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Memories of Ice (The Malazan Book of the Fallen, Book 3)

This is one of those books I leave and I'm just emotionally drained and devastated, yet I consider this one of the best books ever to be written. On reread, it's even more impactful because I actually understand what's going on. It's actually quite funny thinking how much I had no clue about. There are so many instances on the reread that you know exactly who that vaguely-mentioned character is now that you've had as much experience with Erikson as I now have. *brushes off shoulder*

There's always talk about the books that are shades of gray when it comes to right and wrong and Malazan is at the top of that list for me. It's so human, so real. For instance, you have Anomander Rake, leader of the Tiste Andii, super-powered ascendant who's been fighting against the Malazans for years along side one of his only real friends, Caladan Brood. Yet, he acknowledges the Malazans have actually been good for the cities they've conquered. Former dungheeps have become thriving metropolitan areas. 

How much more could we use people who can acknowledge their own failings. There's another good example I have quote below with Lanas Tog.

There's a great quote I saw on r/fantasy on reddit:

"the most unrealistic part of fantasy books is when 18-year-old boys spend five books insisting they're not the chosen one instead of immediately saying "yeah that sounds right." Johnny McNulty

Kallor is one of these.

Holy cow, Memories of Ice is so good, but spoilers from here on out:

I think I realized why I like Gardens of the Moon so much while I was reading MoI and it's because it has so much Whiskeyjack and there are only two books that really feature him to any degree more than a passing mention, this and GotM. And you really get to know what a great guy he is in this book. He's a powerful leader, amazing swordsman apparently (could spar with Dassem Ultor and give him a hard time for a while), compassionate with Silverfox and the "little guy," and clearly a great lover too (eh Korlat...). 

Then there's Gruntle, the last person who would ever want to have anything to do with the gods getting "appointed" mortal sword. Oh and you really get to know Ganoes Paran and Quick Ben, and just the whole Bridgeburner thing. There's so much greatness to this book and a lot of that is probably because of the sheer depravity of the Pannion Domin; the Tenescowri.

And don't get me started on Itkovian and the Grey Swords. Tragedy after tragedy in this book.

Now, to add to this ridiculously jumbled review, it's quote time, from my own book and some cut and pasted from this site:

Lanas Tog (talking about Onos T'oolan's disagreement with going through the ritual):
"Hate him? No. Of course I disagreed. We all did, and so he acquiesced. It is a common belief."
Lady Envy waited, then crossed her arms and asked, "What is?"
"That truth is proved by weight of numbers. That what the many believe to be right, must be so. When I see Onos T'oolan once more, I will tell him: he was the one who was right."

“Kallor shrugged. '[...] I have walked this land when the T'lan Imass were but children. I have commanded armies a hundred thousand strong. I have spread the fire of my wrath across entire continents, and sat alone upon tall thrones. Do you grasp the meaning of this?'

'Yes,' [said Caladan Brood.] 'You never learn.” 
― Steven Erikson, Memories of Ice

“I'll not deny I am impressed by your mastery of six warrens, Quick Ben. In retrospect, you should have held back on at least half of what you command." The man made to rise.
"But, Bauchelain," the wizard replied, "I did.” 
― Steven Erikson, Memories of Ice

5 out of 5 Stars (First in, last out)

Article: Why You Should Read Malazan

2 comments:

Unknown said...

Hey there, I've been following you on Goodreads for a while (just happened across your rating system and a review and RSSed the site), glad to see you posting on here again. I want to try and read Malazan Book of the Fallen because of your praise of the books but Garden of the Moon was so rough, which you said would happen for first time reads. When will it start to make sense?
Incidentally, I had this same problem with a Song of Ice and Fire and I was told, stick with it, if they are important their name or family will come up again.

bryce said...

Hey thanks! I don't know if I really started to *understand* Gardens until about 400 or so pages in. I started to find out that you just have to push through and don't try to overanalyze everything (you can save that for the reread). I also fully acknowledge that some people just won't like it because I enjoyed the mystery even though I wasn't really understanding things. So, if it's a total slogfest for you, it may not be your cup-o-tea.