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Publisher's Summary

With The Steel Remains, award-winning science fiction writer Richard K. Morgan turned his talents to sword and sorcery. The result: a genre-busting masterwork hailed as a milestone in contemporary epic fantasy. Now Morgan continues the riveting saga of Ringil Eskiath - Gil, for short - a peerless warrior whose love for other men has made him an outcast and pariah. Only a select few have earned the right to call Gil friend. One is Egar, the Dragonbane, a fierce Majak fighter who comes to respect a heart as savage and loyal as his own. Another is Archeth, the last remaining daughter of an otherworldly race called the Kiriath, who once used their advanced technology to save the world from the dark magic of the Aldrain - only to depart for reasons as mysterious as their arrival. Yet even Egar and Archeth have learned to fear the doom that clings to their friend like a grim shadow... or the curse of a bitter god.
©2011 Richard Morgan (P)2011 Tantor
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Adnan on 11-01-11

Graphic / Edgy / Entertaining

Yes, the main character is homosexual, and there are graphic details about his preferences in bed. Book also contains a lot of graphic violence and colorful language.

Richard???s writing is sharp and edgy. Narrative keeps the reader interested. However, it seemed that story was a little distorted at times. Few details, though entertaining, could have been omitted.

Simon is one of my favorite narrators, and he does an excellent job again. In wrong hands, this book would have been difficult to listen.

I recommend this book, and look forward to the future books by Richard.

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11 of 11 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Ione on 10-15-11

It's official, I'm hooked --

The Steel Remains was the first Richard K. Morgan book I ever read, and it hooked me from the start. I'm happy to say that The Cold Commands has firmly cemented my new addiction.

Morgan has a gift with prose writing. I mean really, who can resist lines like "the blade tore sideways through the pliant lips of the scabbard, made a blurred arc around and down off his shoulder, was there at guard in front of him, like steel laughter in the light.". Couple that prose with fascinating characterization and intense action, and you've really got a book worth reading.

The Cold Commands is obviously a "second" book, the middle of a trilogy. It is clearly setting up action for the grand finale. Nonetheless, it also has plenty of action and plot in its own right. All three of the main characters expand and develop from their beginnings in The Steel Remains, and we especially see more of what Ringil is becoming -- whether he wants to or not. I won't post spoilers here, but I shuddered at some of the suffering Morgan inflicts on Ringil in this one -- and I can't wait to see how Morgan finishes up the series in the next book!

There is still quite a bit of explicit violence, some moderately explicit sex, and plenty of swearing in this book, so those who were offended by The Steel Remains (TSR) should probably steer clear. But anyone who appreciated TSR should love this volume as well. Also, Simon Vance does just as good as job with The Cold Commands as he did on TSR, so his narration was a joy to listen to and definitely adds to the reading experience. I own both the text and audio versions of both of these books, and each enhances the other.

Oh, finally -- for fans of the Takeshi Kovacs books -- read carefully, and you will find multiple references to Takeshi and his universe. You don't need to catch the references to enjoy the book, but they provide some fun insider entertainment if you do!

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18 of 19 people found this review helpful

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