Water Sleeps (Glittering Stone Series #3)

Water Sleeps (Glittering Stone Series #3)

4.5 9
by Glen Cook
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

Regrouping in Taglios, the surviving members of the Black Company are determined to free their fellow warriors held in stasis beneath the glittering plain. Journeying there under terrible conditions, they arrive just in time for a magical conflagration in which the bones of the world will be revealed, the history of the Company unveiled, and new world gained and

Overview

Regrouping in Taglios, the surviving members of the Black Company are determined to free their fellow warriors held in stasis beneath the glittering plain. Journeying there under terrible conditions, they arrive just in time for a magical conflagration in which the bones of the world will be revealed, the history of the Company unveiled, and new world gained and lost...all at a terrible price.

One of the greatest fantasy epics of our age continues in this ninth installment of Glen Cook's Chronicles of the Black Company.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Cook's singular talent for combining gritty realism and high fantasy provides a singular edge....Highly recommended.” —Library Journal

“Compelling...Holds to the...standards of previous volumes.” —Publishers Weekly

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The eighth volume of the military-fantasy saga of the Black Company of mercenaries, set in a world strongly flavored with elements of South and Southeast Asia, holds to the high standards of previous volumes. It is some years after the close of She Is the Darkness, when their nemesis, Soulcatcher, locked most of the company in a magical stasis field; now the motley band of survivors exists at the sufferance of the Radisha of Taglios. This doesn't keep them from wanting to rescue their comrades, however. The survivors' leader is the young woman Sleepy, once the ward of Murgen the Standardbearer but now his successor as Annalist of the Company. She organizes her ragtag followers to steal the various sorcerous secrets of ways to penetrate the stasis field and eventually to kidnap the Radisha of Taglios herself. The rescue party then hotfoots it, with Soulcatcher, her general Mogaba and Kina the Destroyer close on their heels. This novel stands more sturdily on its own than most Black Company books, thanks to the exceptional richness of the world building, exemplified in particular by its feel for Eastern religion. It is compelling to see the dregs of society groping toward a certain nobility through loyalty to lost comrades. The actual rescue has a whiff of anticlimax about it, but the revived Black Company has no shortage of surviving enemies, and further adventures are practically guaranteed and eagerly anticipated. (Mar.)
Library Journal
After a 15-year wait, the surviving members of the Black Company marshal their resources and begin an arduous journey back to the glittering plain in an attempt to rescue their captured brethren from a timeless prison. Told from the perspective of an Annalist haunted by dreams of the past and visions of the future, the eighth chronicle of the last of the Free Companies encompasses accounts of guerrilla warfare and open battle as well as the everyday struggles of soldiers caught in a war for survival against immortal enemies. Cook's singular talent for combining gritty realism and high fantasy provides a hard edge to this popular fantasy noir series. Highly recommended.
Kirkus Reviews
This outing for the Black Company - either the eighth or the ninth, depending on how you count-completes the Glittering Stone trilogy (She is the Darkness, 1997; Bleak Seasons, 1996). Most of the usual crew return: Goblin, One-Eye, the female warrior Sleepy (she's also the new annalist/narrator), the witch Ky Sahra, 14-year-old Tobo (son of former annalist Murgen), and the Company's pilgrim/swordmaster allies, the Nyueng Bao. Murgen, Sahra's husband, is now confined by supernatural means beneath the Glittering Plain, along with the Captain and others, but his spirit's free to roam and spy for the Company. So, how can the Company free their companions from confinement while avoiding destruction by the various gods, goddesses, demons, wizards, etc., who are their adversaries?

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780812555349
Publisher:
Doherty, Tom Associates, LLC
Publication date:
03/15/2000
Series:
Black Company Series, #9
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
480
Product dimensions:
4.26(w) x 6.64(h) x 1.24(d)

Related Subjects

Read an Excerpt

1

In those days the Black Company did not exist. This I know because there were laws and decrees that told me so. But I did not feel entirely insubstantial.

The Company standard, its Captain and Lieutenant, its Standardbearer and all the men who had made the Company so terrible, had passed on, having been buried alive at the heart of a vast desert of stone. "Glittering stone," they whispered in the streets and alleys of Taglios, and "Gone to Khatovar," they proclaimed from on high, the mighty making what they had been so determined to prevent for so long over into a great triumph once the Radisha or Protector or somebody decided that people ought to believe that the Company had fulfilled its destiny.

Anyone old enough to remember the Company knew better. Only fifty people had ventured out onto that plain of glittering stone. Half of those people had not been Company. Only two of those fifty had returned to lie about what had happened. And a third who had come back to retail the truth had been killed in the Kiaulune wars, far away from the capital. But the deceits of Soulcatcher and Willow Swan fooled no one, then or now. People simply pretended to believe them because that was safer.

They might have asked why Mogaba needed five years to conquer a Company that had passed on, squandering thousands of young lives to bring the Kiaulune domains under the Radisha's rule and into the realm of the Protector's twisted truths. They might have mentioned that people claiming to be Black Company had held out in the fortress Overlook for years after that, until the Protector, Soulcatcher, finally became so impatient with their intransigence that she invested her own best sorceries in a two-year project that reduced that huge fortress to white powder, white rubble and white bones. They might have raised these points. But they remained silent instead. They were afraid. With cause, they were afraid.

The Taglian empire under the Protectorate is an empire of fear.

During the years of defiance, one unknown hero won Soulcatcher's eternal hatred by sabotaging the Shadowgate, the sole gateway to the glittering plain: Soulcatcher was the most powerful sorcerer alive. She might have become a Shadowmaster to eclipse those monsters the Company had pulled down during its earlier wars on Taglios' behalf. But with the Shadowgate sealed she could not conjure killer shadows more powerful than the few score she had controlled when she worked her treachery on the Company.

Oh, she could open the Shadowgate. One time. She did not know how to close it again, though. Meaning everything inside would be free to wriggle out and begin tormenting the world.

Meaning that for Soulcatcher, party to so few of the secrets, the choice must be all or very little. The end of the world or making do.

For the moment she is making do. And pursuing continuous researches. She is the Protector. Fear of her steeps the empire. There are no challenges to her terror. But even she knows this age of dark concord cannot endure.

Water sleeps.

In their homes, in the shadowed alleyways, in the city's ten thousand temples, nervous whispers never cease. The Year of the Skulls. The Year of the Skulls. It is an age when no gods die and those that sleep keep stirring restlessly.

In their homes, in the shadowed alleyways or fields of grain or in the sodden paddies, in the pastures and forests and tributary cities, should a comet be seen in the sky or should an unseasonable storm strew devastation or, particularly, if the earth should shake, they murmur, "Water sleeps." And they are afraid.

Copyright © 1999 by Glen Cook

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
"Cook's singular talent for combining gritty realism and high fantasy provides a singular edge....Highly recommended."—Library Journal

"Compelling...Holds to the...standards of previous volumes."—Publishers Weekly

Meet the Author

Born in 1944, Glen Cook grew up in northern California, served in the U.S. Navy, attended the University of Missouri, and was one of the earliest graduates of the well-known "Clarion" workshop SF writers. Since 1971 he has published a large number of SF and fantasy novels, including the "Dread Empire" series, the occult-detective "Garrett" novels, and the very popular "Black Company" sequence that began with the publication of The Black Company in 1984. Among his SF novels is A Passage at Arms.

After working many years for General Motors, Cook now writes full-time. He lives near St. Louis, Missouri, with his wife Carol.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

Water Sleeps (Glittering Stone Series #3) 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm going to have to read the entire series over again while waiting for Soldiers Live, the next book, to arrive. This book was great, and now I can't wait for more of the Black Company!
Guest More than 1 year ago
So, finally Murgen's reign of the books comes to an end, and once thought by all to be boy, Sleepy becomes an rallying point of what left of the Black Company... She launches a lot of grandiouse schemes, and actually succeeds in most of them - let's better say in all of them. A lot of One-Eye & Goblin style action brings them to harm even Soulcatcher herself! All in all, I love this series. I love most of Glen Cook's books. He brings some kind of gritty realism in fantasy world - very special and very outstanding style. In this series, I think that this was one of the books that made me read it again and again, and gave me wish to re-read all previous books of it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book and the entire series might well be the best of its kind. Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time books just does NOT compare! Why the Black Company books do not receive more recognition, i'll never understand!
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I first read the back cover, I didn't know if I would enjoy this one. But as I loved all the others about the Black Company, I bought it anyway. I mean a story without Croaker or Lady or Murgen....come on! Water Sleeps has turned out to possibly be the best written story of the whole series! I like Sleepy and Soulcatcher is the best.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Water Sleeps is worth every penny it cost. I have loved the Black Company books since the very first one. Water Sleeps continues the excellent Standard that Cook has lived up to.