The Gathering of the Lost by Helen Lowe
I have found over the years that an author who has a great imagination and story to tell does not necessarily need to be perfectly technically proficient to entertain me. However, an author who is technically proficient but doesn’t have a healthy imagination is always going to leave me disappointed. Long story short, tell me a good story and I’ll ignore your shortcomings.
Helen Lowe is a perfect example of how an author doesn’t need to be technically brilliant to entertain me. I can point out a half-dozen different things that could easily have left me seething if it weren’t for the utter genius of the story being told.
Five years after the Darkswarm assault on her stronghold home, Malian of Night remains missing, believed dead in the wilds of Jaransor. But not all accept her death and now her enemies are on the hunt. Suspicion falls on the heralds Tarathan and Jehane, who find themselves caught in a web of intrigue and murder during the Ijiri Festival of Masks. They flee bearing word of a death on the Wall – and a call to duty and honour that Malian must answer or be forsworn.
Yet after five years of searching, the legendary weapons of the Derai’s greatest hero remain lost. Without them, a return to the Wall of Night promises only defeat and death.
Returning to this world was a wonderful experience for me. I enjoyed Lowe’s first instalment in her ‘The Wall of Night Series’ and was eagerly anticipating the return. The characters and ideas portrayed in Lowe’s writing enthral me and capture my imagination like very few other books. There is no great load of explanation so that we understand the intricacies of the religion or history of the world, and mysteries are left to play out over time, with the reader none the wiser than any of the characters.
Spending so much time with Jehane Mor and Tarathan was wonderful, and the twists and turned that followed their stories literally had me gasping out loud at points.
Malian was wonderful, perfectly grown up and confident with still this innocence to her that makes her entirely relatable and captivating. Kalan’s roll has grown as well, and both are now more than just “heir” and “subject”, growing into roles that are as fleshed out as you could hope for.
There was some laziness on the part of the author, I found; times when a change of perspective was made simply because the author had no other idea how to get the information in. I remember Robin Hobb once told me that if a piece of information can’t be made to come from your main character, it probably shouldn’t be in there. Several times throughout this book I noticed this; points where I knew we had jumped into a POV simply because the author could not work out how to convey the information otherwise.
But as I said at the beginning, overwhelm me with a story that leaves me reading well past my bedtime and I’ll forgive you just about anything.
The Gathering of the Lost returns the reader to a world of hidden history and shadowed loyalties and keeps you there until well past your bedtime, loving every minute of it.
This The Gathering of the Lost book review was written by Joshua S Hill
All reviews for: Wall of Night
The Heir of Night
Wall of Night: Book 1
A thrilling excursion into a richly imagined realm of strife and sacrifice, where the fate of a dangerously divided world rests in the hands of one young woman,...
The Gathering of the Lost
Wall of Night: Book 2
Daughter of Blood
Wall of Night: Book 3
Malian and Kalan are coming home, but already it may be too late. The Wall of Night, dangerously weakened by civil war among the Derai families that garrison it, is on the ...
Have you read The Gathering of the Lost?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
The Gathering of the Lost reader reviews
8.5/10 from 1 reviews
There are currently no reader reviews for this book. Why not be the first?
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
For a thousand years the ash fell and no flowers bloomed. For a thousand years the Skaa slaved in misery and lived in fear while the Lord Ruler reigned with absolute power ...
Half a King
Prince Yarvi has vowed to regain a throne he never wanted. But first he must survive cruelty, chains and the bitter waters of the Shattered Sea itself. And he must do it al...
The Faithful and The Fallen
Young Corban watches enviously as boys become warriors, learning the art of war. He yearns to wield his sword and spear to protect his king’s realm. But that day will...
The Farseer Trilogy
In a faraway land where members of the royal family are named for the virtues they embody, one young boy will become a walking enigma. Born on the wrong side of the sheets,...
The World Tree rises up out of the seething clouds like a green mountain, lifting its children up to the light. All creation nestles in its gigantic branches: all take shel...
Hope and Red
In a fracturing empire spread across savage seas, two people find a common cause. Hope, the lone survivor of a village massacred by the emperor's forces, is secretly tr...
The Banished Lands are engulfed in war and chaos. The cunning Queen Rhin has conquered the west and High King Nathair has the cauldron, most powerful of the seven treasures...
In the cramped west end of Sharakhai, the Amber Jewel of the Desert, Çeda fights in the pits to scrape a living. She, like so many in the city, pray for the downfall...
The Black God's War
Moses Siregar III
Against the backdrop of epic warfare and the powers of ten mysterious gods, Lucia struggles to understand The Black One. Her father-king wants war. Her messianic brother wa...
Long ago, the evil God Torak fought a war to obtain an object of immense power - the Orb of Aldur. But Torak was defeated and the Orb reclaimed by Belgarath, the sorcerer. ...
The Emperor's Soul
Shai is a Forger, a foreigner who can flawlessly copy and re-create any item by rewriting its history with skilful magic. Condemned to death after trying to steal the emper...
Hunt for Valamon
When Crown Prince Valamon is impossibly taken from the heart of Algaris Castle, the only clue as to motive or culprit is the use of unknown sorcery. Reclusive cleric Seris ...
Four millennia have passed since the gods came to Myrillia, creating the nine lands of peace as a haven from the nightmarish, accursed Hinterlands. In all this time nothing...
A Trial of Blood and Steel
Spurning her royal heritage to be raised by the great warrior, Kessligh, her exquisite swordplay astonishes all who witness it. But Sasha is still young, untested in battle...
In a land where magic has been forgotten and peace has reigned for centuries, unrest is simmering. Three kingdoms battle for power… A princess must journey into enem...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages:
- Recommended high fantasy books/series
- Recommended books/series featuring royalty, monarchy and empire
Best of 2016
Hope and Red
In a fracturing empire spread across savage seas, two people find a common cause. Hope, the lone survivor of a village massacred by the emperor's forces, is secretly train...
The Star Touched Queen
Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of Death and Destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father's kingdom. Content to follow more ...
The Pagan Night
Ruling with an iron hand, the Church has eliminated the ancient pagan ways. Yet demonic gheists terrorize the land, hunted by the Inquisition, while age-old hatreds rage betwe...
Books of the Month
A selection of books - old and new alike - that were a joy to read.
Every dog has its day... And for Lineker, a happy go lucky mongrel from Peckham, the day the world ends is his: finally a chance to prove to his owner just how loyal he can be. Reg, an agoraphobic writer with an obsession for nineties football, plans to wait out the impending doom in his second floor flat, hiding himself away from the riots outs...
The Shadow Crucible
Taking humanity back to their primordial beliefs and fears, Estella confronts Mikhail’s faith by revealing the true horror of the lucrative trade in human souls. All ...
The Dog Stars
Hig, bereaved and traumatised after global disaster, has three things to live for - his dog Jasper, his aggressive but helpful neighbour, and his Cessna aeroplane. He's...
Beren and Luthien
Painstakingly restored from Tolkien’s manuscripts and presented for the first time as a continuous and standalone story, the epic tale of Beren and Lúthien wil...
Life moves at a leisurely pace in the tiny town of Wall - named after the imposing stone barrier which separates the town from a grassy meadow. Here, young Tristran Thorn h...
While honeymooning in the Tower of Babel, Thomas Senlin loses his wife, Marya. The Tower of Babel is the greatest marvel of the Silk Age. Immense as a mountain, the ancient...
The Ninth Rain
The great city of Ebora once glittered with gold. Now its streets are stalked by wolves. Tormalin the Oathless has no taste for sitting around waiting to die while the real...