Ian C Esslemont

Ian Cameron Esslemont was born in 1962 in Winnipeg, Canada. He is best-known for his contributions to the Malazan Book of the Fallen epic fantasy series popularised by his friend and collaborator, Steven Erikson (a fellow archaeologist). Esslemont is the co-creator of the Malazan world.

Esslemont and Erikson co-created the Malazan world in 1982 as a backdrop for role-playing games. In 1991 they collaborated on a feature film script set in the same world, entitled Gardens of the Moon. When the script did not sell, Erikson greatly expanded the story and turned it into a novel. The two writers agreed to both write books set in the same world. However, it took a further eight years before Gardens of the Moon was published by Bantam UK and Erikson agreed to write a further nine novels set in the same world. Life and work commitments delayed Esslemont's own entries to the series until 2005, when his first novel, Night of Knives, was published as a limited edition by PS Publishing (a mass-market release by Bantam UK followed in 2007). This book was a prequel to the main Malazan sequence. His second novel, Return of the Crimson Guard, takes place within the main Malazan sequence, shortly after the events of the sixth book, The Bonehunters. It was published by PS Publishing in May 2008 and by Bantam UK later that year. Both Night of Knives and Return of the Crimson Guard have now been bought by Tor for publication in the United States.

"We used a single pad of yellow legal notepaper that we passed back and forth across the table in coffeeshops, taking turns writing dialogue and scenes, etc. It was very rewarding creatively, reacting to what he came up with then passing the pad back for his reaction - like a great game of chess, only we were both winners. We found we could co-write screenplays in that manner but we both knew it wouldn’t work for novel writing so we didn’t even attempt it. Now, we both do have our "own stories to tell" but they are still woven together in that - if the plan can be kept to - they still cross and merge in various ways and at various moments."

November 28th 2017 interview with Ian C Esslemont

Joshua S. Hill talks to Ian C. Esslemont following the release of Deadhouse Landing, the second book in his Path to Ascendency series which further explores the Malazan universe he co-created with Steven Erikson.JSH: In your own words, give us a brief description of yourse [...]

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Ian C Esslemont reviews

Night of Knives

A Novel of the Malazan Empire: Book 1 written by Ian C Esslemont

The empire is named for the tiny island and city of Malaz, now a sleepy, seedy backwater port. Tonight however, a once-in-a-generation Shadow Moon brings demon hounds and d [...]

Published: 2004

Our rating: 7.8 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Return of the Crimson Guard

A Novel of the Malazan Empire: Book 2 written by Ian C Esslemont

The return of the Crimson Guard could not have come at a worse time for an empire exhausted by warfare and weakened by betrayals and rivalries.Into the seething caul [...]

Published: 0000

Our rating: 8.0 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Stonewielder

A Novel of the Malazan Empire: Book 3 written by Ian C Esslemont

Enter the universe of Malazan, where many a story unfolds and strife is easier to find than water in a well. After finishing their business elsewhere, the Malazan Empire fi [...]

Published: 0000

Our rating: 7.3 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Orb Sceptre Throne

A Novel of the Malazan Empire: Book 4 written by Ian C Esslemont

The tumult of great powers colliding has passed and the city of Darujhistan and its citizens can at last get on with what matters: trading, bickering, politicking and enjoy [...]

Published: 2012

Our rating: 8.5 | 1 positive reader reviews

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Blood and Bone

A Novel of the Malazan Empire: Book 5 written by Ian C Esslemont

In the western sky the bright emerald banner of the Visitor descends like a portent of annihilation. On the continent of Jacuruku, the Thaumaturgs have mounted another expe [...]

Published: 0000

Our rating: 8.8 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Assail

A Novel of the Malazan Empire: Book 6 written by Ian C Esslemont

Tens of thousands of years of ice is melting, and the land of Assail, long a byword for menace and inaccessibility, is at last yielding its secrets. Tales of gold discovere [...]

Published: 2014

Our rating: 9.0 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Dancer's Lament

Path to Ascendancy #1 written by Ian C Esslemont

It was once a land ravaged by war, minor city states, baronies and principates fight for supremacy, and then the rival cities of Tali and Quon formed an alliance and so Quo [...]

Published: 0000

Our rating: 8.0 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Deadhouse Landing

Path to Ascendancy #2 written by Ian C Esslemont

After the disappointments of Li Heng, Dancer and Kellanved wash up on a small insignificant island named Malaz. Immediately, of course, Kellanved plans to take it over. To [...]

Published: 2017

Our rating: 8.6 | 0 positive reader reviews

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Kellanved's Reach

Path to Ascendancy #3 written by Ian C Esslemont

The incessant war between the bickering city states of Quon Tali rages. So engrossed are the warring lords and princes in their own petty feuds that few notice that an upst [...]

Published: 2019

Our rating: 8.5 | 0 positive reader reviews

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