Malazan Book Of The Fallen – A Guide To The Epic Fantasy Series

Malazan Book of the Fallen is a series of epic fantasy novels written by the Canadian author Steven Erikson. There are ten books in the series, which kicks off with Gardens of the Moon and concludes with The Crippled God. The series is very complex with a wide scope, and presents the narratives of a large cast of characters spanning thousands of years across multiple continents.

The plot presents a complicated series of events in the world upon which the Malazan Empire is located. Each of the first five novels is relatively self-contained, in that each resolves its respective primary conflict; but many underlying characters and events are interwoven throughout the works of the series, binding it together. The series has received widespread critical acclaim, with reviewers praising the epic scope, plot complexity and characterizations. This series is definitly well worth a read so check out our guide to the series here!

Reviews about Malazan Book Of The Fallen

“Erikson is an extraordinary writer. My advice to anyone who might listen to me is, Treat yourself to Gardens of the Moon. And my entirely selfish advice to Steven Erikson is, write faster.”
–Stephen R. Donaldson

“I stand slack-jawed in awe of The Malazan Book of the Fallen. This masterwork of imagination may be the high water mark of epic fantasy. This marathon of ambition has a depth and breadth and sense of vast reaches of inimical time unlike anything else available today. The Black Company, Zelazny’s Amber, Vance’s Dying Earth, and other mighty drumbeats are but foreshadowings of this dark dragon’s hoard.”
–Glen Cook

“A world that is both absorbing on a human level and full of magical sublimity… a wonderfully grand conception …splendidly written… fiendishly readable.”
— Adam Roberts

“Gripping, fast-moving, delightfully dark… utterly engrossing.”
— Elizabeth Hayden

“Erikson’s strengths are his grown up characters and his ability to create a world every bit as intricate and messy as our own.”
— J.V. Jones

“Rare is the writer who so fluidly combines a sense of mythic power and depth of world, with fully realized characters and thrilling action, but Steven Erikson manages it spectacularly.”
— Michael A. Stackpole

Malazan Book Of The Fallen Reading Order

Malazan Books Of The Fallen

Gardens of the Moon – Book 1

Vast legions of gods, mages, humans, dragons and all manner of creatures play out the fate of the Malazan Empire in this first book in a major epic fantasy series

The Malazan Empire simmers with discontent, bled dry by interminable warfare, bitter infighting and bloody confrontations with the formidable Anomander Rake and his Tiste Andii, ancient and implacable sorcerers. Even the imperial legions, long inured to the bloodshed, yearn for some respite. Yet Empress Laseen’s rule remains absolute, enforced by her dread Claw assassins.

For Sergeant Whiskeyjack and his squad of Bridgeburners, and for Tattersail, surviving cadre mage of the Second Legion, the aftermath of the siege of Pale should have been a time to mourn the many dead. But Darujhistan, last of the Free Cities of Genabackis, yet holds out. It is to this ancient citadel that Laseen turns her predatory gaze.

However, it would appear that the Empire is not alone in this great game. Sinister, shadowbound forces are gathering as the gods themselves prepare to play their hand…

Conceived and written on a panoramic scale, Gardens of the Moon is epic fantasy of the highest order–an enthralling adventure by an outstanding new voice.

Malazan Books Of The Fallen

Deadhouse Gates – Book 2

The second novel in the awe-inspiring Malazan Book of the Fallen series. “Gripping, fast-moving, delightfully dark, with a masterful and unapologetic brutality reminiscent of George R. R. Martin.” — Elizabeth Haydon

In the vast dominion of Seven Cities, in the Holy Desert Raraku, the seer Sha’ik and her followers prepare for the long-prophesied uprising known as the Whirlwind. Unprecedented in size and savagery, this maelstrom of fanaticism and bloodlust will embroil the Malazan Empire in one of the bloodiest conflicts it has ever known, shaping destinies and giving birth to legends . . .

Set in a brilliantly realized world ravaged by dark, uncontrollable magic, Deadhouse Gates is a novel of war, intrigue and betrayal confirms Steven Eirkson as a storyteller of breathtaking skill, imagination and originality–a new master of epic fantasy.

Malazan Books Of The Fallen

Memories Of Ice – Book 3

Marking the return of many characters from Gardens of the Moon and introducing a host of remarkable new players, Memories of Ice is both a momentous new chapter in Steven Erikson’s magnificent epic fantasy and a triumph of storytelling.

The ravaged continent of Genabackis has given birth to a terrifying new empire: the Pannion Domin. Like a tide of corrupted blood, it seethes across the land, devouring all. In its path stands an uneasy alliance: Onearm’s army and Whiskeyjack’s Bridgeburners alongside their enemies of old–the forces of the Warlord Caladan Brood, Anomander Rake and his Tiste Andii mages, and the Rhivi people of the plains.

But ancient undead clans are also gathering; the T’lan Imass have risen. For it would seem something altogether darker and more malign threatens this world. Rumors abound that the Crippled God is now unchained and intent on a terrible revenge.

House Of Chains – Book 4

Best selling author Steven Erikson returns with the latest in the morbid history of the Malazan Empire

In Northern Genabackis, a raiding party of savage tribal warriors descends from the mountains into the southern flatlands. Their intention is to wreak havoc amongst the despised lowlanders, but for the one named Karsa Orlong it marks the beginning of what will prove to be an extraordinary destiny.

Some years later, it is the aftermath of the Chain of Dogs. Tavore, the Adjunct to the Empress, has arrived in the last remaining Malazan stronghold of Seven Cities. New to command, she must hone twelve thousand soldiers, mostly raw recruits but for a handful of veterans of Coltaine’s legendary march, into a force capable of challenging the massed hordes of Sha’ik’s Whirlwind who lie in wait in the heart of the Holy Desert.

But waiting is never easy. The seer’s warlords are locked into a power struggle that threatens the very soul of the rebellion, while Sha’ik herself suffers, haunted by the knowledge of her nemesis: her own sister, Tavore.
And so begins this awesome new chapter in Steven Erikson’s acclaimed Malazan Book of the Fallen . . .

Midnight Tides – Book 5

After decades of internecine warfare, the tribes of the Tiste Edur have at last united under the Warlock King of the Hiroth. There is peace–but it has been exacted at a terrible price. A pact made with a hidden power whose motives are at best suspect, at worst, deadly.

To the south, the expansionist kingdom of Lether, eager to fulfill its long-prophesized renaissance as an Empire reborn, has enslved all its less-civilized neighbors with rapacious hunger. All, that is, save one–the Tiste Edur. And it must be only a matter of time before they too fall–either beneath the suffocating weight of gold, or by slaughter at the edge of a sword. Or so destiny has decreed.
Yet as the two sides gather for a pivotal treaty neither truly wants, ancient forces are awakening. For the impending struggle between these two peoples is but a pale reflection of a far more profound, primal battle–a confrontation with the still-raw wound of an old betrayal and the craving for revenge at its seething heart.

The Bonehunters – Book 6

The Sixth Book of the epic Malazan Book of the Fallen from bestselling author Steven Erikson. In The Bonehunters, in the ever decimating Malazan Empire, a war is brewing between mortal and immortals, gods and mages, that will decide once and for all who shall exist and who shall perish.

Here is the stunning new chapter in Steven Erikson magnificent Malazan Book of the Fallenhailed as an epic of the imagination and acknowledged as a fantasy classic in the making.

Reaper’s Gale – Book 7

A brutal, harrowing chapter of the Malazan Book of the Fallen from best selling author Steven Erikson

All is not well in the Letherii Empire. Rhulad Sengar, the Emperor of a Thousand Deaths, spirals into madness, surrounded by sycophants and agents of his Machiavellian chancellor. Meanwhile, the Letherii secret police conduct a campaign of terror against their own people. The Errant, once a farseeing god, is suddenly blind to the future. Conspiracies seethe throughout the palace, as the empire edges ever-closer to all-out war with the neighboring kingdoms.

Fate decrees that there is to be a reckoning, for such bloodshed cannot go unanswered–and it will be a reckoning on an unimaginable scale. This is a brutal, harrowing novel of war, intrigue and dark, uncontrollable magic; this is epic fantasy at its most imaginative, storytelling at its most thrilling.

Toll Of The Hounds – Book 8

A thrilling, harrowing novel of war, intrigue and dark, uncontrollable magic, Toll the Hounds is the new chapter in Erikson’s monumental series – epic fantasy at its most imaginative and storytelling at its most exciting.

In Darujhistan, the city of blue fire, it is said that love and death shall arrive dancing. It is summer and the heat is oppressive, but for the small round man in the faded red waistcoat, discomfiture is not just because of the sun. All is not well. Dire portents plague his nights and haunt the city streets like fiends of shadow. Assassins skulk in alleyways, but the quarry has turned and the hunters become the hunted.

Hidden hands pluck the strings of tyranny like a fell chorus. While the bards sing their tragic tales, somewhere in the distance can be heard the baying of Hounds. And in the distant city of Black Coral, where rules Anomander Rake, Son of Darkness, ancient crimes awaken, intent on revenge. It seems Love and Death are indeed about to arrive…hand in hand, dancing.

Dust Of Dreams – Book 9

In war everyone loses. This brutal truth can be seen in the eyes of every soldier in every world…

In Letherii, the exiled Malazan army commanded by Adjunct Tavore begins its march into the eastern Wastelands, to fight for an unknown cause against an enemy it has never seen.

So this last great army of the Malazan Empire is resolved to make one final defiant, heroic stand in the name of redemption. But can deeds be heroic when there is no one to witness them? And can that which is not witnessed forever change the world? Destines are rarely simple, truths never clear but one certainty is that time is on no one’s side. For the Deck of Dragons has been read, unleashing a dread power that none can comprehend…

In a faraway land and beneath indifferent skies, the final chapter of ‘The Malazan Book of the Fallen’ has begun…

The Crippled God – Book 10

The climax to the epic Malazan Book of the Fallen series that will determine how the world is ruled.
Savaged by the K’Chain Nah’Ruk, the Bonehunters march for Kolanse, where waits an unknown fate. Tormented by questions, the army totters on the edge of mutiny, but Adjunct Tavore will not relent. One final act remains, if it is in her power, if she can hold her army together, if the shaky allegiances she has forged can survive all that is to come. A woman with no gifts of magic, Tavore Paran of House Paran means to challenge the gods – if her own troops don’t kill her first.

Elsewhere, the three Elder Gods, Kilmandaros, Errastas and Sechul Lath, work to shatter the chains binding Korabas, the Otataral Dragon, from her eternal prison. Once freed, she will rise as a force of devastation, and against her no mortal can stand. At the Gates of Starvald Demelain, the Azath House sealing the portal is dying. Soon will come the Eleint, and once more, there will be dragons in the world.

We hope you enjoyed discovering the Malazan Books Of The Fallen series. Let us know what you think of the series!

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