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The Silver Spike by Glen Cook

The Silver Spike (1989)

by Glen Cook

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637715,184 (3.65)5



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I started with the Black Company a long while ago and recently thought to finish up. Well, the Silver Spike is a little bit of a disappointment. It has several stories and viewpoints of the telling at first, not to my mind at all like the Black Company. That takes us well through the middle of the book before the group starts tightening. And the story starts to come around as well.

It seems an afterthought to the series, to give the fans something to understand what happens to a few key characters whether they will live happily ever after, or otherwise. That some storylines within the mind of Mr Cook are brought together for a simple quick telling and resolution. The story itself, and the battles that are inherent to the title piece seem washed over, simply resolved, or spoken in the past tense in the chapter following where we anticipated that a battle was to occur. So there, a company of mercenaries, or just a few of that old company, don't seem to have much to give us. The Magic, since we are following several of the Sorcerers now, also seems to be glossed over.

A little bit better than average, and perhaps part of this series that does not need to be reread again. ( )
  DWWilkin | Jun 22, 2015 |
The Silver Spike follows Darling, Raven, Case, and Silent, and what happens to them after the battle at the Barrowlands. You also get to follow Toadkiller Dog as well as the Wicker Man (identity unknown at the beginning). Other than being able to find out what happened to Darling, Raven, and Silent, the book wasn’t that good.

The book is mainly written in the point-of-view of Case, who was a companion to Raven when he was in hiding in of of the other books. You don’t get to know him too well until this book. I would rather read the point-of-view of Croaker or Lady, though Case wasn’t too bad. Some people complain because of the writing, but if you read carefully you find out that Case just learned how to read and write, so it makes sense that some of the grammar isn’t right.

The Silver Spike is probably the worst of all the Black Company novels I have read so far. I really didn’t enjoy this one much. I found the plot to be pretty boring. It parallels the main plot and answers some of the “what happend to…?” questions you might have. The focus of the book is pretty simple: someone is out to steal the silver spike and sell it to the highest bidder. Obviously, everyone gathers to stop anything evil from getting their hands on the spike and a big battle breaks out at the end.

There are no surprises or intrigue that really kept me reading, and it is way more predictable than any of the other books. I just did by best and pushed through it. It feel like I could have skipped quite a few pages and not have missed anything.

There are new characters introduced in the book. I like some of them including Fish (who becomes creepy) and Smeds. They are pretty well developed, and Smeds undergoes some major changes throughout the story. Although I like these characters, there seem to be other characters that are underdeveloped and almost non-existent including Raven’s children and Exile (who could be an interesting character).

I really like hearing about Raven from Case’s perspective. He seems to have become an entirely new person. Raven talks a lot more than in the other books and you get to know more about his feelings towards Darling and his children. He becomes more human when reading about him from Case’s perspective.

After reading this I am hoping that some of the characters actually stay dead. If you have read any of the other books you will understand.

I do recommend reading this novel before Shadow Games. It was the last of the books in the omnibus edition, but should have been the first. It deters from the main story line and after reading the ending in Dreams of Steel this book isn’t what you wan’t to read.

Although I did not enjoy it much, I recommend reading it anyway if you have read the others just because it ties up some loose ends. But definitely read it before Shadow Games! You may enjoy it more than I did if you read this one first.

( )
  AshleyMiller | Sep 10, 2014 |
This may have been more fun if I'd read it immediately after the previous trilogy, but it wasn't great. It follows some minor ex- and non-Black Company members and wraps up their dangling plotlines, and it's as well-executed as any of Cook's works, but the big threat is dreadfully contrived and the characters really never rise above their minor status. ( )
  JeremyPreacher | Mar 30, 2013 |
This book is related to the Black Company series, but is not directly part of it. It follows the actions of a band of treasure hunters who end up freeing The Dominator from where he was imprisoned in The White Rose. Once he is loose in the world, he roams about causing massive destruction and seeking revenge on the Black Company. Opposition from Raven, Darling and the beasts from the Plain of Fear prevent him from ever catching up to the Company though.

This is the weakest of the Black Company books I have read. A lot of it is just repeated attempts to kill a seemingly unkillable monster. A large portion of the book is from the viewpoint of a new set of characters who are not that interesting. An unneeded sidebar to the series. ( )
  sdobie | Jun 16, 2010 |
No tv in the world that these guys inhabit. If there was, and they had seen a few B horror movies, they would never, ever, ever have contemplated what they did in a sheer fit of idiocy. The rest of the book is the bad things that happen to them afterwards. Mostly obvious to us, and somewhat amusing. Plus some Darling and her entourage, and what happens to them.

http://notfreesf.blogspot.com/2006/11/silver-spike-glen-cook.html ( )
  maketest | Aug 26, 2009 |
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This here journal is Raven's idea but I got me a feeling he won't be so proud of it if he ever gets to reading it because most of the time I'm going to tell the truth.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0812502205, Mass Market Paperback)

...embedded in the trunk of the scion of the godtree, it contains the essence of the maddest of the Ten Who Were Taken...The Dominator. Defeated by the Lady and cast from this world, all that was left of him was a foul trace of lingering evil. But the graveyard that was once the Barrowland contains more secrets than dead. All who would possess the power of the Dominator are drawn to the spike. A foolhardy band of thieves is the first to reach it, and a rapacious and malign spirit is unleashed on an unwary world. The forces gather, sides are drawn, and mortal men can only die as the Dark Lords battle for domination.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:16:28 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Croaker, Lady, Murgen the annalist, the sorcerer One-Eye, and their fellow mercenary warriors in the hire of the city of Taglia discover their situation is not what it seems

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