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David Gemmell

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David Gemmell

Postby blaine » Thu Apr 21, 2005 1:35 pm

I' ve read many of his books ( almost all drenai , waylander , and others , which names i cannot remind now ) and every new i'm reading with the same , and even higher tension. Character's like druss , or waylander will probably exist in my memory for the long time further .
What do you think of his books ? Do you like them or not ?
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Postby Void » Thu Apr 21, 2005 5:01 pm

Only read one of his books, I enjoyed it.....
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Postby Anthentar » Thu Apr 21, 2005 5:03 pm

What are they about?
"He who fights with monsters should be careful lest he thereby become one. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will also gaze into you." - Beyond Good and Evil, aphorism 146
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Postby blaine » Fri Apr 22, 2005 7:01 am

It' s heroic fantasy . In every book there is a main character , on whom the plot and action is focused. He is usually tragic character (wife and children killed etc. ) He has nothing to lose , is looking for death , is travelling the entire world without any target. Gemmell'style of writing makes you feel that you are also the part of created world. Descriptions are colourful, there are many fights, there is some war in every tome. Too long to write all of it.
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Postby Dragonfleet » Fri Apr 22, 2005 8:33 am

Hehe, sounds like my kind of book. Well not really but I don't mind stereotypical stuff like that. I'll keep an eye out.
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Postby bulldoggurl2005 » Fri Apr 22, 2005 11:14 am

hey guys whats up? :lol:
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Postby Ariel » Fri Apr 22, 2005 5:21 pm

That's bulldoggirl,not Ariel!We have the same avatar!
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Postby Anthentar » Fri Apr 22, 2005 5:38 pm

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Sounds like they're great books. I will look out for them.
"He who fights with monsters should be careful lest he thereby become one. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will also gaze into you." - Beyond Good and Evil, aphorism 146
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Postby Chaeronia » Sat Apr 23, 2005 7:04 pm

Blaine offers a somewhat simplistic view on Gemmell's work. Not to say he is incorrect, but such a bare-bones synopsis does Mr Gemmell a definite disservice.

Gemmell has been called Fantasy's king of heroic fantasy, and whilst I haven't read enough of the genre to categorically agree, I can safely say that Gemmell is a genuine master of fantasy fiction.

The first fantasy book I ever picked up was Waylander, and twelve years later I can say I was indeed privileged to have been introduced to the genre via such a classic. Few things I have read since has inspired and moved me in such a manner.

In a number of ways Waylander can be seen as a typical Gemmell novel: an aging anti-hero fighting against both real and personal demons, struggling to make sense of a world that refuses to acknowledge human deeds in clear, compartmental definitions of black and white. His world is ruled by shades of grey. Throw in a seemingly unstoppable enemy, a siege or two and a healthy dose of savagery, and you have a template for many Gemmell books to come.

But to finish there would be to utterly miss the point. Criticisms of his work may hint at him being formulaic, repeating the same themes too many times; but for me Gemmell is simply this: a genuine, thoroughbred storyteller. Yes, his themes and plotlines are endemic, but they are told with such verve, pace and emotion that this is not only forgiven, it is encouraged.

Perhaps his most renowned work is Legend, Gemmell's first tale of Druss, written over twenty years ago. Again we have an aging man battling an overwhelming enemy, the majority of the action taking place during a prolonged siege. But Legend is so much more than this (though I won't say why, you should find out yourself) and it is important because it represents Gemmell's stance, his dogma. Echoes of Legend exist in every book Gemmell has written since. It is a brilliant, singular encapsulation of his entire career and, for many (though not me), he has never topped it.

Gemmell is not the most technically brilliant writer I have come across, nor does he offer overtly subtle plotlines, far from it in fact. It is the sheer strength of his characters, the pace of his stories and the beautiful contradictions he weaves within his tales that will always force me to return to his books, time and time and time again.

He is, in my eyes, a magician.

Chaeronia
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Postby blaine » Sun Apr 24, 2005 3:55 am

Chearonia , you're right i've shallowed the theme, and you fortunetely filled the gap . After your message there is little to add .
Mayby it, that in his further books his"dogma and stance " evolves . Sword, or axe mixed with anger stops to be the only way to handle with the world and its inhabitants . Gemmell starts to add new sort of characters to his books . In "waylander" this is dardalion ,in "midnight falcon " banuin . They are usualyy the priests of sth. Gemmell named source. They represent the antagonistic stance which instead of blood and suffering offers love and understanding. The culmination of it comes when in one book (i cannot remind the title ) the assasin decado sacfices his life to save the citizens of the city being under siege.

p.s. Have you heard that when he was younger gemmell used to work as bouncer in a club? It means that , plot of his books could be connected with his life experiences.

Forgive me my mistakes ( there will surely be some ) because i'm not a native speaker and writing long texts cause me some problems .

cya
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Postby Chaeronia » Tue Apr 26, 2005 4:03 pm

Hello Blaine,

First of all, your English is fine, perfectly readable, and easily puts my efforts at writing in another language to shame.

Mayby it, that in his further books his"dogma and stance " evolves . Sword, or axe mixed with anger stops to be the only way to handle with the world and its inhabitants . Gemmell starts to add new sort of characters to his books . In "waylander" this is dardalion ,in "midnight falcon " banuin .

Blaine, yes, this is one thing that truly appeals to me about his work. Gemmell puts forward both sides of the argument, as it were, through his characters, regarding the rights and wrongs of war: the necessity to defend one's own land and family against an oncoming horde or a demon of 'evil' (the definitions of good and evil according to perspective are also thoroughly explored), versus the pacifist ideal that all killing, no matter what its context, is a self-defeating action, as you are using the crafts of destruction and 'evil' to combat 'evil' itself.

And so on!

As to the specific example of Decado, I can only remember the character of Decado in the novel King Beyond the Gate where he is a member of the Thirty, not an assassin, but I may well have my wires crossed.

I did know David was a bouncer as a young man, yes. From what I understand, David grew up in a rough area and learned to use his fists from an early age. He used to get in trouble at school and was expelled when he was 16 years old.

I think it was when he was a bouncer that he wrote his first story called White Knight, Black Swan (under the pseudonym Ross Harding) which apparently draws heavily from his time as a doorman and the characters of dubious repute he mixed with (this is the only Gemmell book I've not read; it's out of print and very hard to come by). I am pretty sure his influences as a child and as a doorman have become infused with his literary characters, and they are all the more rich and three-dimensional for it.

Out of interest you might like to know there is a Gemmell mailing list that you can access via Yahoo Groups.

And finally this is a link to a Gemmell page that, for me, sums the man and his work up very succinctly. The anecdote begins around half way down:

http://www.booksattransworld.co.uk/davi ... l/home.htm

(I'm not sure if you are allowed to post links on this site, so apologies in advance if this is not following protocol!)

Regards,

Chaeronia
Last edited by Chaeronia on Sun Jul 30, 2006 6:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby blaine » Sat May 07, 2005 3:29 pm

Hello Chaeronia !
Sorry for my absence . Personal problems ... long to talk about ;]

First of all, your English is fine, perfectly readable, and easily puts my efforts at writing in another language to shame. "


Thanks , I know it's not so good ;] but thanks ;]

I will surely join that mailing group .

You're right decado is a character from the "King Beyond the Gate" . As far as i remember in one of the last scenes when the town gates were broken and beasts (changed soldiers from the dragon legions) were ready for final attack , decado sacrificed himself to change them back into their previous form . (Icould be wrong i read that book a long time ago )

Gemmell is a writer who had very big impact on me. It's not surprising i was reading his books mainly when i was 14-15 and as everyone knows at that age book can change your view on the world forever .

I haven't read all his books , there some problems in Poland with translation and i have access only to a part of his work.

Chearonia you're also a member of that mailing group ?

regards,

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