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The Steel Remains by Richard K. Morgan

The Steel Remains (original 2008; edition 2010)

by Richard K. Morgan

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1,061537,907 (3.76)68
Title:The Steel Remains
Authors:Richard K. Morgan
Info:Del Rey (2010), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 448 pages

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The Steel Remains by Richard K. Morgan (2008)

Recently added byBooksOn23rd, lottpoet, kara-karina, dainvermaak, Hexum2600, private library, sirpe, Jenno1829
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    imyril: Two very different authors tackle fantasy stereotypes and subvert them with glee. Abercrombie focuses on antiheroes - the coward, the torturer, the berserker - whereas Morgan takes more traditional heroes and then soaks them in noir. The results are delightfully wicked, blood-soaked and utterly readable.… (more)

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Showing 1-5 of 51 (next | show all)
An interesting fantasy read, a lot of fun and some enjoyable spins on the classic tropes. I will say, however, that there is a hint of the Science Fiction Morgan is so well known for in this, but not enough to deter even the most stalwart of Sci-Fi haters.

Word of warning, however: there is a LOT of graphic sex in the novel. I'm fine with it, and as unusual as it sounds it added a lot of character development. But there is a lot.

This novel also felt like the first in a series; and I do not mean just the way that it ended. By the time everything starts to really come together the novel is 90% of the way through. There is a nice culmination, but it really serves just to whet the appetite. I look forward to the next two! ( )
  Hexum2600 | Nov 18, 2015 |
I love this book, but I understand those who aren't as enamoured of it as I am. It takes a while to get into, and the plot is slow and convoluted and sometimes confusing. The world-building is spare, but what is presented is fascinating, and a nice change from other fantasy novels where every tiny detail of the scenery is explained. It took me a while to become emotionally invested in the characters, but once I did, I was hooked. However, if you can't like the characters, particularly Ringil and Archeth, you probably won't like this book. There are lots of intriguing little details (and I wanted to find out more about the sci-fi-tech elements of the landscape) but the book's strength comes from its characters and their choices. I love strung-out, brilliant Archeth, and the completely messed up Ringil. The characters are definitely the products of their environments, and come off as completely human (even when they aren't). They make terrible decisions sometimes, but at least they are doing something. The world they exist in is bleak and tyrannical, and while the characters are heroes, they aren't exactly good. It's grimdark fantasy, and definitely has some disturbing scenes, but it's very much a worthwhile read. ( )
  semjaza | Nov 6, 2015 |
Not for the prudish...
Yes, the main characters have sex... but it is not really pornographic. Actually, it's not even as graphic as some of Morgan's other works, and defo not as sexually graphic as Abercrombie's dark fantasies.

Is it for kids? No, kids shouldn't be reading Morgan. But... just because it's gay sex doesn't make it pornographic. If it was a man and woman having at it, most people wouldn't have said a word about the sex scenes - eliminate homophobia and, at worst, it's a mid-range graphic sexual content. JR Ward's Black Dagger books are way more detailed and they're only considered girl-porn. Actually, everytime someone comments on the presence of gay sex, or the pornographic sex in this novel it worries me... there are a couple points where the author mentions how the women were "raped to death", and nobody bats an eye over this. Actually, an abundance of dark fantasies routinely have women being raped (more or less violently, of course) but nobody cranks and moans about that so much... but put one guy getting it up the rear and LOOK OUT IT'S PORN.

Wonder if that was actually Morgan's point?

Ahhh... what a world when the wholesale rape of women (read any zombie books lately?) has become perfectly routine....

Okay, on to the story... no... as you might not be able to tell from my rant, I actually didn't like it all that much. Morgan was trying too hard to shock us all with the "romantic" (hahahah... I mean "gay") component and not hard enough to shock us with the plot. I guess it worked, in the shock department... just not in the right way. It was just a bit too confusing, just a few too many characters, and a just a bit too much "otherworldlyness" which I didn't think was explained well enough to follow completely. I think he did bring the characters' storylines back together at the end, but it was just a little too late to help the tension/pacing of the novel.

Someone described it as setting the stage for the future novels and that is very accurate; this story is more setup and world/character building and less action/plot.

I'd still read more of Morgan's stuff (and his Kovac's books are still some of my fav dark books)... I might read the next in this series if I come across it somewhere, but won't be seeking it out. ( )
  crazybatcow | Aug 27, 2015 |
Excellent dark fantasy from Richard Morgan, embracing and (sometimes subtly) subverting familiar tropes (whilst still relying on trademark themes) to deliver something that is almost but not quite grimdark or epic.

Expect jaded heroes, ultraviolence and swearing.

Full review here: https://www.librarything.com/topic/185601#5183440 ( )
  imyril | Jun 12, 2015 |
A fantasy book that simultaneously shatters fantasy clichés as well as portraying the most pathetic of them. An openly gay and prosecuted for it war hero (shattered and clichéd) goes off to save a damsel in distress (cliché) and dark forces awaken and yada yada. Nothing particularly striking and the writing was irrelevant, or so it felt. ( )
  Xleptodactylous | Apr 7, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 51 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Richard K. Morganprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Chong, VincentCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rostant, LarryCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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'I think you look on death as your friend,' she murmured. 'That is a strange friend for a young man to have.'
'The only faithful friend in this world,' he said bitterly. 'Death is always sure to be at your side.'

Poul Anderson
The Broken Sword
This book is for my father, John Morgan, for carrying me past the seaweed.
First words
When a man you know to be of sound mind tells you his recently deceased mother has just tried to climb in his bedroom window and eat him, you only have two basic options.
"Forget the law. It isn't going to help. They'll cite it where it suits them, ignore it where it doesn't. They're clerics, Archeth. They spend their whole fucking lives selectively interpreting textual authority to advantage."

Emperor Jhiral to Archeth, p.325
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345493036, Hardcover)

A dark lord will rise. Such is the prophecy that dogs Ringil Eskiath—Gil, for short—a washed-up mercenary and onetime war hero whose cynicism is surpassed only by the speed of his sword. Gil is estranged from his aristocratic family, but when his mother enlists his help in freeing a cousin sold into slavery, Gil sets out to track her down. But it soon becomes apparent that more is at stake than the fate of one young woman. Grim sorceries are awakening in the land. Some speak in whispers of the return of the Aldrain, a race of widely feared, cruel yet beautiful demons. Now Gil and two old comrades are all that stand in the way of a prophecy whose fulfillment will drown an entire world in blood. But with heroes like these, the cure is likely to be worse than the disease.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:27 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Fantasy fiction. Ringil, the hero of the bloody slaughter at Gallows Gap is a legend to all who don't know him and a twisted degenerate to those that do. A veteran of the wars against the lizards he makes a living from telling credulous travellers of his exploits. Until one day he is pulled away from his life and into the depths of the Empire's slave trade. Where he will discover a secret infinitely more frightening than the trade in lives. Anti-social, anti-heroic and decidedly irritated, Ringil, Archeth (pragmatist, cynic and engineer, the last of her race) and Egar Dragonbane (steppe-nomad and one-time fighter for the Empire) are about to be sent unwillingly forth into a vicious, vigorous and thoroughly unsuspecting fantasy world. Called upon by an Empire that owes them everything and gave them nothing. Richard Morgan brings his trademark visceral writing style, turbo-driven plotting and thought provoking characterisation to the fantasy genre and produces a landmark work with his first foray.… (more)

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