|Gardens of the Moon|
|Series||Malazan Book of the Fallen|
|Publisher|| Bantam Books (UK & Canada)|
Tor Books (USA)
|Released||1 April 1999|
|Pages|| 712 pp (Bantam paperback)|
496 pp (Tor paperback)
|ISBN|| ISBN 0-553-81217-3|
|Followed by||Deadhouse Gates|
Gardens of the Moon is the first novel in the Malazan Book of the Fallen epic fantasy series. It was written by Steven Erikson in 1992–1993 and first released on April 1, 1999 in Great Britain and Canada. It was later released in the United States on December 28, 2004, and has been re-released in multiple editions and in many countries.
This novel is dedicated to I. C. Esslemont.
Worlds to conquer, worlds to share.
The Malazan Empire simmers with discontent, bled dry by interminable warfare, bitter infighting and bloody confrontations with the formidable Anomander Rake, lord of Moon's Spawn, and his Tiste Andii. Even the imperial legions, long inured to the bloodshed, yearn for some respite. Yet Empress Laseen's rule remains absolute, enforced by her dread Claw assassins.
For Sergeant Whiskeyjack and his squad of Bridgeburners, and for Tattersail, surviving sorceress of the Second Legion, the aftermath of the Siege of Pale should have been a time to mourn the many dead. But Darujhistan, last of the Free Cities of Genabackis, yet holds out and it is to this ancient citadel that Laseen turns her predatory gaze.
However, it would appear that the Empire is not alone in this great game. Sinister, shadowbound forces are gathering as the gods themselves prepare to play their hand...
|Gardens of the Moon|
|Chapter 1||Chapter 2|
|Chapter 3||Chapter 4|
|Chapter 5||Chapter 6|
|Chapter 8||Chapter 9|
|Chapter 11||Chapter 12|
|The Gadrobi Hills|
|Chapter 14||Chapter 15|
|The City of Blue Fire|
|Chapter 17||Chapter 18|
|Chapter 20||Chapter 21|
|Chapter 22||Chapter 23|
The story opens in the year 1154 of Burn's Sleep (1154th Year of Burn's Sleep), the 96th year of the Malazan Empire and the last year of Kellanved's Reign. Twelve year old Ganoes Paran stands on the wall of Mock's Hold, looking out over the Mouse Quarter of Malaz City. His father is within discussing trade with the Fist who runs Mock's Hold. Ganoes is approached by an unnamed commander of the Bridgeburners. They discuss the death of Dassem Ultor, the empire's First Sword, at the city of Y'Ghatan. The commander is approached by another Bridgeburner with a fiddle on his back and the two start discussing the purge of the Mouse Quarter and then Surly's change of name to Laseen. Ganoes interjects that the name Laseen means Thronemaster in the Napan tongue.
Finally, Surly herself appears, flanked by Claw acolytes. She and the commander exchange veiled threats and the commander asserts that her laws against sorcery will not survive Kellanved's return. Surly dismisses the commander and leaves. As the prologue closes, Ganoes tells the commander that he will be a soldier when he grows up. The commander warns him against it but is met with nothing but derision from the boy.
Seven years later it is the 1161st Year of Burn's Sleep and the 7th year of Laseen's rule. A young fishergirl stands on the roadside in Itko Kan next to an old woman named Rigga as the army rides by on the road. Rigga suddenly begins spouting prophecy claiming the girl's soul will be embraced by shadow, but that Rigga will preserve her because they are linked. Rigga is then cracked on the head by one of the passing soldiers and dies. A man swathed in black and a shorter man appear. The shorter man summons seven hounds and sends them after the soldiers. The two figures then reveal themselves to be Cotillion and Ammanas, and they seem to be discussing what to do with the fishergirl. Cotillion says that she will do for their purposes, and it is implied that they will use the fishergirl as an instrument of vengeance against the Empress Laseen. Cotillion then possesses the fishergirl.
An unnamed Captain and the Adjunct are riding horses. The captain is Old Guard, his soldiers are veterans of the siege of Li Heng and the Wickan Wars, but they are disturbed by the bloody carnage they witness. The area of Itko Kan has been contained after the hounds of shadow had killed the entire marching army. The Adjunct notices someone riding through the bodies and the captain tells her it is Ganoes Paran, a Lieutenant new to his command from Unta. Lorn requests his presence and asks him what killed the soldiers and Ganoes offers his opinion that it was done with teeth, by animals as big as mules. After speaking with Ganoes for a short while, the Adjunct decides to take him on as a commissioned officer on her staff. The Adjunct is open and honest with Ganoes, telling him that something has happened and killing all of these people is simply a diversion to keep them from knowing what really happened. It is revealed that the purpose of the Adjunct is to hunt down mages and kill them, as well as act as the will of the Empress. Ganoes is sent to Gerrom to investigate the fisher family while Lorn requests the records of any new recruits for the Malazan army as well as the captain’s opinions on the nobility in the military command structure.
Sorry enlists in the Malazan Marines. She requests a spot in High Fist Dujek Onearm’s Host. The recruiter, Staff Sergeant Aragan, notices the mud on her boots is the wrong colour for the region and it hasn’t rained there in days.
Ganoes goes to Gerrom and finds it empty. Everyone had fled and the soldiers at the local constabulary were all killed. The constabulary itself was full of black pigeons, obviously brought there by sorcery. He rides off.
Seeing a figure on the road, dressed all in green. The figure is Topper, the Empress’s chief Claw assassin, and the murderer of all of Unta’s royal line. Ganoes, as an Untan noble, is immediately offended by him. They wait until a Warren opens for them. Topper has been sent to lead Ganoes to the Adjunct. Their trip through the Imperial Warren is uneventful, though filled with verbal sniping at each other. They arrive at a basalt arch, Topper steps through the gate, but Ganoes rides through on his horse – and into the Imperial throne room. The horses hooves shatter the mosaic that covers the floor of the Hall of the Throne as Laseen herself looks on from her throne made of twisted bone. Dismounting, Ganoes notices that Laseen has changed little in the seven years since he last saw her at Mock’s Hold. The empress makes reference to the conversation between the young Ganoes and Whiskeyjack, noting that he ignored Whiskeyjack’s advice about living quietly. Ganoes is led from the throne room by Topper, in search of Adjunct Lorn.
Ganoes meets with the Adjunct, and is told that he will have a few days before being officially reassigned to her service. Since they are in Unta, he decides to visit his family’s estate. At the gates, he meets the veteran, Gamet, and encounters his sister Tavore.
Two years later (1163rd Year of Burn's Sleep) the Siege of Pale and the attack on Moon’s Spawn. The chapter opens after the Enfilade that killed all of Tattersail’s Cadre, including her lover, Calot. Tattersail watches as the Black Moranth exact their vengence on the city of Pale. Hairlock lies dying, missing his legs as several Bridgeburners (Whiskeyjack, Sorry, Kalam, and Quick Ben) arrive. Whiskeyjack and the Bridgeburners have been trying to undermine the walls of Pale for three years, and most were killed as the siege ended and tunnels collapsed. Of the 1400 Bridgeburners, only about 35 survived after the last day. Tayschrenn stopped the remaining Bridgeburners from trying to dig out their comrades.
Tattersail remembers back to earlier in the morning, waking up with Calot, when Hairlock summoned them both with magic. Arriving at the command tent, Tayschrenn and Hairlock are already there with Dujek appearing moments later. Dujek explains that they will be attacking Moon's Spawn directly, causing Hairlock to become paranoid and suspicious. The High Fist explains that a Claw has already been dispatched to distract the city's mages while their assault begins. Recalling the poem Anomandaris by Fisher kel Tath, Tattersail, Calot and Hairlock determine that the Lord of Moon's Spawn must be Anomander Rake himself, a wielder of the Elder magic of Kurald Galain. Tayschrenn explains that Bellurdan discovered information in the ancient tome Gothos' Folly regarding the Tiste Andii that may aid them in battle.
The final battle of the Siege of Pale begins with Tayschrenn on a hill directly underneath Moon's Spawn, Nightchill, Bellurdan, and A'Karonys on another hill further away, and Tattersail, Hairlock, and Calot on the furthest hill. Tayschrenn makes the first attack on Moon's Spawn, unexpectedly antagonizing the Great Ravens who had lain there to roost. The other mages also began their assault, but were unexpectedly attacked from behind. These attacks led to Hairlock being cut in two, Calot sacrificing himself to defend Tattersail, Nightchill being torn in two by a Kenryll'ah demon, and A'Karonys' death from an ice-based magical attack. The numerous sorcerous attacks originating from Moon's Spawn were deflected by Tayschrenn onto the defenceless 2nd and 5th armies situated on the plain, killing thousands in very little time. After sustaining heavy damage, Moon's Spawn retreats to the Tahlyn Mountains to the south.
Awakened from her gruesome reverie by the nearby Bridgeburners, Hairlock forces her to come to the conclusion that it was Tayschrenn and not Rake that had purposely tried to kill them. This surprise is compounded by her witnessing Quick Ben's use of ancient magic to soulshift Hairlock into a puppet's body. When pressured by the Bridgeburners to accept the hidden puppet that had become Hairlock, she also agrees to become part of their conspiracy against Tayschrenn as revenge for the murder of so many of their comrades.
Agonizing over the soldiers whose deaths she felt responsible for, Tattersail returns to her tent, only to discover the package she was given by Quick Ben contains the soulshifted puppet of Hairlock. Instinctively, she contacts her Warren, inadvertently creating a need to do a brief reading of the Deck of Dragons. With Hairlock as witness, she manages a play of two cards, the Knight of High House Dark, and Oponn, the twin Jesters of Chance. The playing revealed the presence of a spinning coin, only noticed by Tattersail, giving her cautious hope for the future.
During the same period, Ganoes Paran has been travelling by ship to Genabackis, continuing his search for answers to the slaughter at Itko Kan. Topper makes a brief appearance, trading insults with the captain while conveying the whereabouts of the girl, Sorry, who is suspected of being linked to the aforementioned events at Itko Kan. He also gives Paran orders to take command of the Bridgeburners on their new mission to capture the city of Darujhistan. Arriving at the port city of Genabaris, Paran is met by an agent of the Empire who informs him that he will be riding a Quorl with the Green Moranth to the Cloud Forest, and then with the Black Moranth to Pale.
Anomander Rake sends Tiste Andii mage assassins to take out Darujhiustan's guild. Quick Ben releases a demon, but it gets killed in minutes by the skilled mage assassins and Rake.
Also, Crokus visits the D'Arle girl and returns her jewels. After a discussion, she lets him go. Sorry watches him.
The Gadrobi HillsEdit
The City of Blue FireEdit
Notes and referencesEdit