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  1. #1

    Dread Empire - Glen Cook

    Been reading this series. On the first book. Trying to find some others who have also read it because I have some questions. I know Cook jumps around and hit writing can get confusing bc I read his Black Company books. Any help would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    I just started this too. I'm about a third of the way through the first book, so I probably can't be of much help yet. Really enjoying it so far, it's a real page turner. This is really early Cook and I wasn't expecting much, glad I was wrong.

  3. #3
    Fulgurous Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    I have the first couple. I may possibly be able to answer questions depending on what they are.

  4. #4
    Registered User StephenPorter's Avatar
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    It's been a while since I read them, but if I can still remember what's what I might be able to help.

  5. #5
    Ok ill make my questions w white text so if u have read it or don't mind spoilers don't highlight below this message

    Is Valther and Valthlokkur the same person. Also I am assuming Valther is very old due to how the timeline is laid out.

    Prob have other questions eventually

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by ukbsktbll13 View Post
    Ok ill make my questions w white text so if u have read it or don't mind spoilers don't highlight below this message

    Is Valther and Valthlokkur the same person. Also I am assuming Valther is very old due to how the timeline is laid out.

    Prob have other questions eventually
    To answer your question (also in white!):

    Yes, they are the same person. Remember that Varth was not his original name, it was given to him by his adopted parents...it meant "The Silent One" in their language. In the first book (pretty early on), he takes on the name Varthlokkur, which translates to "The Silent One Who Walks With Grief". I won't go too far into detail (in case you're not there yet), but this is basically an emotional response to a violent act. Varth's timeline will also start to catch up to the timeline of the main story; you're basically getting his backstory in spurts.


    On a side note, I'm really glad to see a thread about this series. Sure, it's a bit raw compared to the Black Company, but that's part of the charm. Whenever I try to sell someone on it, I'll often describe it as a more straightforward version of Malazan. I mean, even some of the characters are similar...who can say that Kruppe was not influenced by Mocker, for example?

  7. #7
    Maybe you slightly misread the first name:

    Valther, Varth and Varthlokkur are they all the same? I figured Varth and Varthlokkurbc i remember the part and reason why he received this new title but figured Valther was another character entirely.

    Thanks

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by ukbsktbll13 View Post
    Maybe you slightly misread the first name:
    Oops, I did misread it...sorry. So the actual answer to your question is no, they're different people.

  9. #9
    Fulgurous Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    Erikson was very influenced by Dread Empire for Malazan, especially in terms of structure. He's a big Cook fan and wrote the intro to the Dread Empire omnibus from NightShade. But the series are different. Dread Empire is very Nordic and dramatic, while Malazan has more thriller and commando aspects with its drama. (Of course, other Cook works have a lot of thriller, commando and black humor to them.) Dread Empire has a lot in common with Gormenghast and Cook was influenced in turn by that. Another influence was Michael Moorcock's work. It's very mythic, but there is that contemporary edge to it. And it's got a lot of cool action in it.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by KatG View Post
    Erikson was very influenced by Dread Empire for Malazan, especially in terms of structure. He's a big Cook fan and wrote the intro to the Dread Empire omnibus from NightShade. But the series are different. Dread Empire is very Nordic and dramatic, while Malazan has more thriller and commando aspects with its drama. (Of course, other Cook works have a lot of thriller, commando and black humor to them.) Dread Empire has a lot in common with Gormenghast and Cook was influenced in turn by that. Another influence was Michael Moorcock's work. It's very mythic, but there is that contemporary edge to it. And it's got a lot of cool action in it.
    I've never read Gormenghast, but if you're saying it has a similar vibe to Dread Empire, you've certainly piqued my interest; I'll have to check it out. As for Moorcock, well, he's always been a favorite of mine.

  11. #11
    Could anyone summarize the events of the last two or so chapters. They were pretty confusing.

  12. #12
    Having just finished the first book I'll give a recap of the ending. I really enjoyed it. The only negative were the characters. I did not really connect or care for any of them unlike in Garrett, BC and Instrumentalities, where the characters were a real strong point.

    Spoiler:

    I don't recall what the last two chapters were, so I'll start when Mocker arrives at the castle.
    - When Mocker arrives he walks right in because everyone has been frozen by a Dread Empire mage, don't recall his name.
    - The DE mage was manipulating Varthlokkur's divinations as he wanted the powers known by the old man in order to rule the DE over his brother.
    - I don't recall the exact sequence, some try to attack the DE mage and he turns them on each other and Varthlokkur, Nepanthe, Mocker and the old man are killed and are all in another state before they die.
    - Varthlokkur traps the DE mage in his device before he is killed.
    - The DE mage's brother arrives and is trapped in the device too.
    - The Star Rider comes and resurrects them all, the old man being in a sleep state trapped in the tower and protected by wards.
    - The Star Rider makes a construct that enters the device and kills the DE mages.
    - Mocker is Varthlokkur's son and Nepanthe is pregnant with Mocker's child.
    Last edited by T77; April 29th, 2013 at 10:25 AM.

  13. #13
    I was sorta feeling that was how it all happened.

    Spoiler below
    But its like they are seeing themselves dead as they are alive. So it was very strange sequence of events. Thanks for the explanation. That is how i was viewing it as well.

  14. #14
    Fulgurous Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    You didn't like Nepanthe? I enjoyed her. To be clear the Dread Empire series consists of a main trilogy, two prequels and a sequel trilogy.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by KatG View Post
    You didn't like Nepanthe? I enjoyed her. To be clear the Dread Empire series consists of a main trilogy, two prequels and a sequel trilogy.
    Yes I did. I think my words were too harsh. I liked some of the characters, besides Nepanthe I also liked Varthlokkur and the old man. The characters were just not as good as in other books from him I've read. And you are right, this is the first book of many in the series, all of which I already own, and this could change.

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