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Joel Minty

Gardens of the Moon and “Difficult” Fantasy: Advice to First-Time Readers

So you’re looking for a new series to digest and have heard a lot of hype about Steven Erikson’s 10-book epic fantasy, the Malazan Book of the Fallen. You’ve heard that it’s huge and bewildering, or you’ve heard it’s an unforgiving slog, or you’ve heard it’s brilliant and sublime, or you’ve heard that it’s not nearly so impressive as everyone claims.

If you’ve heard none of these things, then, dear reader, I encourage you to quit this article, pick up the first novel Gardens of the Moon and begin your genre-warping journey through the high-water mark of modern fantasy. And if that single sentence of mine is not enough to convince you, read ahead regardless and I will explain what makes Malazan unique and worthy of your time. One thing upon which everyone can agree is that Malazan Book of the Fallen is dense as dark matter, and it is best to approach such epics knowing the full gravity of the undertaking.

Now, for those reading this who are keen on the Malazan Book of the Fallen, but might be stumbling over some inhibiting preconceptions, let’s get to the heart of whatever is preventing you from taking your shot at the series, exorcise it, and get you going. With any luck you’ll soon suckle from Togg’s teats like the rest of us. But first…

[Whose accolades are known are prone to challenge…]

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