Darkness That Comes Before, The by R. Scott Bakker

  (78 ratings)

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Book Information  
AuthorR. Scott Bakker
TitleDarkness That Comes Before, The
SeriesPrince of Nothing, The
Book Reviews / Comments (submitted by readers)
Submitted by Brett 
(Oct 21, 2006)

I enjoyed this book. In fact, it was my favorite book of the series.

That said, the best parts of this book is that you get a very strong feel that this world actually could exist. Bakker puts tremendous effort into worldbuilding, and it shows; his fantasy world is one of the best out there, up there with Tolkien. Along with that are the characters. Although they can be pretty draining to read at times (since they are not people coming from joyful backgrounds), they are still very well done, and very realistic.

That said, there are two main issues I have with the book. The first is the prose. Although not quite as dense as the later two books, Bakker's prose can be a little tough to read at first. In addition to that, the plot is original, at least for the characters, but it occasionally drags.

However, I will certainly recommend them to prospective fantasy readers. Mind you, these are not books for children; Bakker's work includes a significant amount of mature themes and adult material. His world is unstinting in its realism, which may be harsh for younger readers.

Submitted by beadlety 
(Apr 16, 2005)

This book itself first caught my eye with its cover (alas I tend to judge books by their covers) and I seriously misjudged it. It was not at all what I expected, to say the least. The characters are rather original in their design and personalities, however, the story is a bit drawn out, spending ages talking about, say, how the world will end when so-and-so occurs. This book is definitely not for younger readers and at some points I was shocked by what I found, even though it helped portray the kind of worlds and societies each character came from. This book is mainly political with a "really big threat" hanging over the entire world (if you like this kind of cliche, go ahead and read it).

Submitted by Russell Stevenson 
(Jan 11, 2005)

Quite difficult to get into at first, this book is well worth the effort as once you start to become engaged with it, you become totally immersed in a richly realised and totally original world. What makes this story unique is the absence of traditional heroes or villains. Instead, the 'Good Guys' are shades of grey in a harsh and often disturbing world. The harshness of the world and its characters sometimes makes reading difficult or hard to stomach, but only adds to the uniquness of the book, a rarity in this genre. Well worth a read.

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