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The Quest

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Wilbur Smith returns with the eagerly awaited sequel to his thrilling Egyptian series. Following on from River God, The Seventh Scroll and Warlock. The Quest continues the story of the Warlock, Taita, wise in the lore of the ancient Gods and a master of magic and the supernatural. Egypt is struck by a series of terrible plagues that cripple the Kingdom, and then the ultimat Wilbur Smith returns with the eagerly awaited sequel to his thrilling Egyptian series. Following on from River God, The Seventh Scroll and Warlock. The Quest continues the story of the Warlock, Taita, wise in the lore of the ancient Gods and a master of magic and the supernatural. Egypt is struck by a series of terrible plagues that cripple the Kingdom, and then the ultimate disaster follows. The Nile fails. The waters that nourish and sustain the land dry up. Something catastrophic is taking place in the distant and totally unexplored depths of Africa from where the mighty river springs. In desperation Pharoah sends for Taita, the only man who might be able to win through to the source of the Nile and discover the cause of all their woes. None of them can have any idea of what a terrible enemy lies in ambush for The Warlock in those mysterious lands at the end of their world.


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Wilbur Smith returns with the eagerly awaited sequel to his thrilling Egyptian series. Following on from River God, The Seventh Scroll and Warlock. The Quest continues the story of the Warlock, Taita, wise in the lore of the ancient Gods and a master of magic and the supernatural. Egypt is struck by a series of terrible plagues that cripple the Kingdom, and then the ultimat Wilbur Smith returns with the eagerly awaited sequel to his thrilling Egyptian series. Following on from River God, The Seventh Scroll and Warlock. The Quest continues the story of the Warlock, Taita, wise in the lore of the ancient Gods and a master of magic and the supernatural. Egypt is struck by a series of terrible plagues that cripple the Kingdom, and then the ultimate disaster follows. The Nile fails. The waters that nourish and sustain the land dry up. Something catastrophic is taking place in the distant and totally unexplored depths of Africa from where the mighty river springs. In desperation Pharoah sends for Taita, the only man who might be able to win through to the source of the Nile and discover the cause of all their woes. None of them can have any idea of what a terrible enemy lies in ambush for The Warlock in those mysterious lands at the end of their world.

30 review for The Quest

  1. 5 out of 5

    Shariful Sadaf

    Short description of plot: This was about an elderly man using his power, influence, and benefits to groom a child in preparation for when she was old enough to have sex. While i liked the Egypt series, this key element began to make me uneasy and increasingly troubled me throughout the book. While this book becomes more blatant in a magic and fantastical genre, carried on from "Warlock" i didn't mind it. This could be seen as either a reality that directly happened after "Warlock" or a made up s Short description of plot: This was about an elderly man using his power, influence, and benefits to groom a child in preparation for when she was old enough to have sex. While i liked the Egypt series, this key element began to make me uneasy and increasingly troubled me throughout the book. While this book becomes more blatant in a magic and fantastical genre, carried on from "Warlock" i didn't mind it. This could be seen as either a reality that directly happened after "Warlock" or a made up story told in the aftermath of the first book "River God ". I basically don't like where the series went after the first two books which were Amazing. The writing skill is still there with the ups and downs that can keep you engaged but when you look forward for a book to finish you know it's not a good sign. I wonder how the event's of this story impacts the book Seventh Scroll, which was set in the present day.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Richard Derus

    Rating: 3.5* of five The Publisher Says: Wilbur Smith has earned international acclaim for his bestselling River God, The Seventh Scroll, and Warlock. Now, the unrivaled master of adventure returns with the eagerly awaited sequel to his thrilling Egyptian series with his most fantastic story yet. The Quest continues the story of the Warlock, Taita, wise in the lore of the gods and a master of magic and the supernatural. Egypt has been struck by a series of terrible plagues, killing its crops and c Rating: 3.5* of five The Publisher Says: Wilbur Smith has earned international acclaim for his bestselling River God, The Seventh Scroll, and Warlock. Now, the unrivaled master of adventure returns with the eagerly awaited sequel to his thrilling Egyptian series with his most fantastic story yet. The Quest continues the story of the Warlock, Taita, wise in the lore of the gods and a master of magic and the supernatural. Egypt has been struck by a series of terrible plagues, killing its crops and crippling its people. Then the ultimate disaster befalls the kingdom. The Nile fails. The waters that nourish and sustain the land dry up. Something catastrophic is taking place in the distant and totally unexplored depths of Africa, from where the mighty river springs. In desperation the Pharaoh sends Taita, the only man who might be able to find his way through the hazardous territory to the source of the Nile and discover the cause of all their woes. But not even Taita can have any idea of what a terrible enemy waits in ambush in those dark lands at the end of their world. No other author can conjure up the violence and mystery of Ancient Egypt like Wilbur Smith. The Quest marks his stirring return to the acclaimed series and proves once again why fans such as Stephen King praise him as the world's "best historical novelist." My Review: Okay. I started the series with an historical novel, shifted into overdrive as a fantasy element came to the fore in Warlock, and now we're in full-blown fantasy mode. The story isn't remotely believable as history, but it's s a good deal of fun. What's disturbing to me is the squicky sexual politics. A eunuch is de-eunuched supernaturally to make the beast with two backs with a (young) reincarnated version of his long-dead love. I'm not sure that makes me all warm and fuzzy about love spanning the ages or really, really uncomfortable with old men sexing up little girls. Well, okay, she's not an actual little girl. But something just doesn't sit right with me. I don't know exactly what it is, in that the author isn't in any way making this prurient and sexual but is presenting it as lovers separated by death being reunited. I am not, however, comfortable with it, and it significantly clouded my enjoyment of the exciting, adventurous, and action-packed Wilbur Smith novel surrounding it. The goddess battle was, I'm sorry to say, not a worthy end to the build-up we got. It was almost an afterthought, and it should have been a centerpiece. On balance, the Smith novel aspects are redeeming only to a middling extent. The pages turned, they will for all Smith readers, but the essential backing of history's known Egypt wasn't quite enough on this outing.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Charlotte Bird

    Really wasn't impressed by this book. I loved Warlock, and I loved the manner with which the supernatural was dealt; it could be real, but it could also be coincidence and natural phenomena that the people of those times would interpret as real. That's fine with me. However, The Quest treats magic as totally real and goes into far fetched stuff like astral projection and talking in each others minds. If you're going to write fantasy, write fantasy; don't start a series with historical fiction an Really wasn't impressed by this book. I loved Warlock, and I loved the manner with which the supernatural was dealt; it could be real, but it could also be coincidence and natural phenomena that the people of those times would interpret as real. That's fine with me. However, The Quest treats magic as totally real and goes into far fetched stuff like astral projection and talking in each others minds. If you're going to write fantasy, write fantasy; don't start a series with historical fiction and end it with fantasy, with a random modern adventure story in the middle. The plot isn't nearly as engaging as his other plots. The Big Bad is built up constantly through the book only for him to beat her in two pages. The fact that he's an aging eunach but the love of his life has been reborn as a child is neatly dealt with by him having his 'manroot' regrown and finding the font of youth just as she reaches maturity. Frankly, the relationship between Taita and Fenn/Lostris is disturbing. Speaking of disturbing, Taita beating the evil goddess by essentially raping one woman and having an odd sex battle with another is beyond wrong, especially trying to justify it with 'well she did a lot of evil things, and she was bad'. The book could have been good, but frankly it wasn't. The likable characters from Warlock made only brief appearances, Taita moaned and whinged his way through it and Fenn was by turns sickeningly innocent and irritatingly sluttish. Everything seemed very neat; Taita no longer a eunach, Lostris no longer dead, yawn yawn yawn.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Petra

    OK, so I loved 'River God' and the 'Seventh scroll' and I also liked 'Warlock' which are the only reasons I got lured into buying this book. The first two books of the "Egypt chronicles" were great because (I now realize) they are actually based on a true story. However, now that Taita has continued to live beyond reasonable age (200 years or so?) I think Wilbur Smith has finally lost all touch with reality in this last book, and has lost my attention along with it. Not that I'm not into Sci-fi OK, so I loved 'River God' and the 'Seventh scroll' and I also liked 'Warlock' which are the only reasons I got lured into buying this book. The first two books of the "Egypt chronicles" were great because (I now realize) they are actually based on a true story. However, now that Taita has continued to live beyond reasonable age (200 years or so?) I think Wilbur Smith has finally lost all touch with reality in this last book, and has lost my attention along with it. Not that I'm not into Sci-fi or anything, it's just not what I expected from this sequel. Honesty compells me to say I did not finish the book, I gave it back to the bookstore.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

    I've enjoyed Wilbur Smith books for 25 years but this one will be my last. I only managed to read the whole thing because I was traveling and didn't have any good alternatives. Also, I couldn't quite believe how bad it was. The mystical elements, while out of place, were hardly the most jarring aspects of the story. I was able to accommodate the genre shift, but couldn't abide the predictability and juvenility of the storyline. The story reads like an old man's dirty fantasy of immortality. Wher I've enjoyed Wilbur Smith books for 25 years but this one will be my last. I only managed to read the whole thing because I was traveling and didn't have any good alternatives. Also, I couldn't quite believe how bad it was. The mystical elements, while out of place, were hardly the most jarring aspects of the story. I was able to accommodate the genre shift, but couldn't abide the predictability and juvenility of the storyline. The story reads like an old man's dirty fantasy of immortality. Where prior books in the sequence required genuine sacrifices of the main characters, this tale never asks the characters to make difficult choices. Moreover, sacrifices made in earlier books are undone and the main characters receive their every desire. Stories can, of course, end with the characters achieving their dreams and living "happily ever after," but in order to be dramatically satisfying, the characters always show evidence of personal growth and their dreams change as they mature. The characters in Wilbur Smith's Quest appear to do just the opposite... they devolve into children who, unfortunately, wield enough power to achieve their every want.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Phair

    What bug got up Wilbur's *** in this one? Totally weird. The first third was nothing but philosophical ramblings about good and evil & 'inner eyes' and psychic powers. Then it turned into an Edgar Rice Burroughs adventure trek up the Nile with lots 'o fightin' and huntin' and hacking of limbs- mostly from the bestial 'lesser races'. THEN we get to the weirdest part which turns into a rant against stem cell/genetic research or something. Shades of Gorean sentence structure & description on top o What bug got up Wilbur's *** in this one? Totally weird. The first third was nothing but philosophical ramblings about good and evil & 'inner eyes' and psychic powers. Then it turned into an Edgar Rice Burroughs adventure trek up the Nile with lots 'o fightin' and huntin' and hacking of limbs- mostly from the bestial 'lesser races'. THEN we get to the weirdest part which turns into a rant against stem cell/genetic research or something. Shades of Gorean sentence structure & description on top of the Burroughs-like action adventure. Really turned off by the continual wholesale slaughter of whole peoples deemed inferior by Taita and his crew. Seems to set us up for a sequel. Ugg- the mind boggles at where this could go next. [And I adored River God & Seventh Scroll!:]

  7. 4 out of 5

    Benjamin Thomas

    This is the fourth and perhaps final volume of Wilbur Smith's ancient Egyptian series, which began with the excellent "The River God" followed by "The Seventh Scroll" and "Warlock". Many folks have commented on the declining quality of this series and I see that, as well, to some extent. The first book was just so outstanding (it's in my top 10 list of all time great reads) that some deterioration was inevitable. This book seems to have received some brutal reviews though. The book continues the This is the fourth and perhaps final volume of Wilbur Smith's ancient Egyptian series, which began with the excellent "The River God" followed by "The Seventh Scroll" and "Warlock". Many folks have commented on the declining quality of this series and I see that, as well, to some extent. The first book was just so outstanding (it's in my top 10 list of all time great reads) that some deterioration was inevitable. This book seems to have received some brutal reviews though. The book continues the story of Taita, a "long-liver" sage who sets off to solve and set right a series of plagues that are hitting the Nile Valley. Turns out the source is the evil "God" Eos. The cat and mouse confrontation between these two form the basis of the novel. Another major plot thread is the reincarnation of Taita's true love from the first book in the series. Since Taita is an enoch from way back, the author finds a way to have his manhood regrown through a process akin to using stem cells. I'll admit to this whole sub plot being extremely convenient for the main characters, a bit too contrived for my taste. I think many people have problems with this book because it is not what they are expecting. This entire series is billed as "historical fiction" and the first book certainly seemed to be so but that moniker has long since worn off. The series has transposed into fantasy, pure and simple. The title itself is indicative of the genre and there are numerous examples of true magic throughout the book: pillars turning into faces that give directions, Taita turning invisible at will or mind travelling over great distances to give messages to others. Whatever historical accuracy might exist here is beside the point. Also, this is a fairly erotic novel with numerous sexual innuendos and some downright graphic sex scenes in it. This is my 6th Wilbur Smith book and although he does put in quite a few erotic encounters I think this is his rawest novel so far of the ones I've read. I've pointed out some of the negative aspects of this novel, but there are positive points also, particularly if you don't mind the fantasy aspects. The story itself flows well and urges the reader to keep turning pages to see what happens next. The author has a way of allowing the reader in to his characters' minds making it realistic despite the very nature of the fantasy involved. And it's a downright fun book to read. A grand adventure full of danger, excitement, pitfalls, triumphs, and a good, satisfying ending. There is a definite end but should the author wish to continue the series, there is room for it to keep going. If he does, I will continue along with him.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Bettie

    Pharoah sends for Taita, the only man who might be able to win through to the source of the Nile and discover the cause of all their woes. Lots of man-root action, and way too Blavatsky-esque for comfortable reading. No wonder I couldn't recall the storyline here. Re-read encounter drops this down to a 1* NEXT! Summer 2013 Egyptian Encounters: Cleopatra (1963) 3* The Mummy Curse 2* Alexandria: The Last Nights of Cleopatra 4* The Complete Valley of the Kings 1* Ancient Egypt by George Rawlinson 4* Tutankh Pharoah sends for Taita, the only man who might be able to win through to the source of the Nile and discover the cause of all their woes. Lots of man-root action, and way too Blavatsky-esque for comfortable reading. No wonder I couldn't recall the storyline here. Re-read encounter drops this down to a 1* NEXT! Summer 2013 Egyptian Encounters: Cleopatra (1963) 3* The Mummy Curse 2* Alexandria: The Last Nights of Cleopatra 4* The Complete Valley of the Kings 1* Ancient Egypt by George Rawlinson 4* Tutankhamen: Life and death of a Pharoah 2* The Luxor Museum 3* Tutankhamen's Treasure 3* The Black Pharaoh\ 3* Nubian Twilight..../ complimentary reading! 4* River God 4* House of Eternity The Egyptian (1954) Agora (2009) CR Justine Death on the Nile (1978) 2* Nefer the Silent 5* The Seventh Scroll 5* The White Nile CR An Evil Spirit out of the West Nefertiti Resurrected 3* Warlock Queen Pharaoh - Hatshepsut TR: The Albert N'Yanza, Great Basin of the Nile and Explorations of the Nile Sources Verdi: Aïda - San Francisco Opera (starring Luciano Pavarotti) FULL: The libretto does not specify a precise time period, so it is difficult to place the opera more specifically than the Old Kingdom. For the first production, Mariette went to great efforts to make the sets and costumes authentic. Given the consistent artistic styles through the 3000 year history of ancient Egypt, a given production does not particularly need to choose a specific time period within the larger frame of ancient Egyptian history. wiki sourced Asterix and Cleopatra (1968) [FULL MOVIE] 1* The Quest 03-07-2013: Egyptian army suspends constitution and removes President Morsi. Additional reading that flows from the above, much like a great river: TR Through the Dark Continent Chez Tintin. Congo river rapids TR A Popular Account of Dr. Livingstone's Expedition to the Zambesi and Its Tributaries

  9. 4 out of 5

    Katherine

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. So I really like the first and second book in the series however, warlock was a bit of a let down with this total reversal of taitas character. This fourth installment, though, was so bad I barely even finish it. Had to push myself through even though it was so ridiculous. Now taitas characters not just some supernatural Obi-Wan Kenobi wanna be, now he some weird creepy freaky sex warrior. Now for some reason the way to get knowledge is to "ginnggaff" people and your knowledge will be making str So I really like the first and second book in the series however, warlock was a bit of a let down with this total reversal of taitas character. This fourth installment, though, was so bad I barely even finish it. Had to push myself through even though it was so ridiculous. Now taitas characters not just some supernatural Obi-Wan Kenobi wanna be, now he some weird creepy freaky sex warrior. Now for some reason the way to get knowledge is to "ginnggaff" people and your knowledge will be making stronger or improved by freaky sex. There is also a weird take on like ancient stem cell research genetic engineering cloning crap going on that was just way way outside the realm of believability for this novel. Very violent as well and as "learned" as Tate is supposed to be he still has no problem and mass murder of "lesser tribes". Leslie my biggest problem with this novel was the fact that the main love story between taita and fenn who is reincarnated from the queen from river God and now comes back completely in love with me. What happened to tanus? Wasn't tanus her soulmate? The great part about Taitas love story in River God was the fact that he loved her even though she was in love with someone else and he cared for both of them. Now for some reason she comes back in a weird almost pedophile kind away he's all up in there. Totally contrived and is a complete injustice to the first novel. I wish I just stop reading this series at the conclusion of river God.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Katie Grainger

    This book has really divided Wilbur Smith fans and I can see why. I have read nearly all of Smith's books and this different to this others works. It focused much more on magic and witchcraft than the historical fiction I am used to. This is why I imagine other Wilbur Smith fans have disliked the book. The storyline was rather unbelievable but then I think this was the point, the book was supposed to be fantastical rather than seriously believable. If you could look beyond this then the story wa This book has really divided Wilbur Smith fans and I can see why. I have read nearly all of Smith's books and this different to this others works. It focused much more on magic and witchcraft than the historical fiction I am used to. This is why I imagine other Wilbur Smith fans have disliked the book. The storyline was rather unbelievable but then I think this was the point, the book was supposed to be fantastical rather than seriously believable. If you could look beyond this then the story was exciting and interesting. I however have mixed views, I think it was a well written story but ultimately it is not in the usual Wilbur Smith style. If you are looking for realistic historical fiction then this is not the book for you, however if you can look past the unbelievable this is a very enjoyable story, I however was disappointed, but I can't recommend Smith's other work highly enough if you are looking for incredible adventure stories give the Courtney novels a try they really do not disappoint.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Zaima Hamid Zoa

    The Quest is the fourth book in the ancient Egyptian series. And I have to say, I am disappointed at Smith. The first two books of this series- The River God and The Seventh Scroll were AMAZING! The third one, Warlock was okay for me. But the Quest was a very dull read for me. The protagonist Taita was a slave during the first two books but in this one he became a Magus and a magician and whatnot. I found him very pretentious and at times wanted to hit him with the book. It felt to me that the bo The Quest is the fourth book in the ancient Egyptian series. And I have to say, I am disappointed at Smith. The first two books of this series- The River God and The Seventh Scroll were AMAZING! The third one, Warlock was okay for me. But the Quest was a very dull read for me. The protagonist Taita was a slave during the first two books but in this one he became a Magus and a magician and whatnot. I found him very pretentious and at times wanted to hit him with the book. It felt to me that the book was filled with unnecessary and repetitive detail which could have been avoided. And the adult parts added another dimension to me disliking towards the book. I really am not into adult books and these sort of description sort of reduces my interest in a book. And the descriptions made me feel like I was reading a script of a pornography at times (sorry for my language). This book was not worth my time at all. I would give it 1.75 stars. :3

  12. 4 out of 5

    Antonio De la rosa

    Appalling. Meet Taita, the lead character: writer, sculptor, painter, architect, engineer, surgeon, strategist, politician, warrior, athlete, historian, geographer, philosopher, mystic, philologist, adventurer, musician, chess player, veterinarian, actor, utterly handsome and wise beyond measure. He is also a caucasian 154 years old eunuch living in the ancient Egypt. He is a slave too, but he does and goes as he pleases. "The Quest" starts with Taita going to a lama monastery in the middle of Dark Appalling. Meet Taita, the lead character: writer, sculptor, painter, architect, engineer, surgeon, strategist, politician, warrior, athlete, historian, geographer, philosopher, mystic, philologist, adventurer, musician, chess player, veterinarian, actor, utterly handsome and wise beyond measure. He is also a caucasian 154 years old eunuch living in the ancient Egypt. He is a slave too, but he does and goes as he pleases. "The Quest" starts with Taita going to a lama monastery in the middle of Dark Africa to get his inner eye opened. A nun does that by extracting Taita's right eye with a spoon and piercing his eye socket with a bamboo needle. Once the inner eye has been properly opened, Taita is able to enjoy a new set of mystic goodies like aura sighting and mind reading. He gets better too at astral traveling, concealment charms and dream interpretation. That's how he is able to get a very bad vibe: back at home, his chum, the Pharaoh of "that very" Egypt, is in trouble. The Nile has dried up, the country is afflicted by a number of horrible plagues and the queen has a crisis of faith. The enhanced Taita goes back and very soon realizes that the culprit of all these bad things is an evil sexy witch, thousands of years old, who lurks very far away, to the south of Egypt, close to a lake and a volcano. Right away Taita enlists a company of brave and insignificant men and down they go for country and king. On their way to the witches' lair Taita happens to find his future female companion: a blond child of 7 years of age. He knows in his heart that the girl is the reincarnation of his old flame, the only woman that he truly ever loved (platonically): queen Lostris of Egypt. He adopts the child and begins her education. She turns out to be exceedingly bright. They find out that the evil witch has an appetite for geniuses. That makes Taita the best possible prize. But there is a problem, the witch feeds on geniuses only through sexual intercourse, and that is just the only thing that Taita cannot do, being castrated and all. Never fear, Eos (that is the name of the witch) has a whole team of evil but highly skilled medical minions. They will be able to help Taita grow a penis (and new teeth too as a bonus). The operation consists of embedding pieces of slaughtered newborn babies in the right cavities of Taita's body and watching them grow. Once Taita has a penis, he gallantly goes into a genital confrontation with Eos. This turns to be a battle of epical proportions, but in the end Taita prevails because is one of the good guys. He literally fucks the evil Eos into oblivion. By doing so, he gets all her wicked but extensive knowledge of the world too, we are talking about thousands upon thousands of years worth of wisdom. Afterwards Taita doesn't stop for a smoke, no, using the memories of the witch he goes down to the basement in the volcano and finds the fountain of eternal youth, and there he takes a long and life changing shower. Behold Taita 2.0: a perfect mind of unmeasurable deepths within a perfect young body that will never grow old. He gets back, tenderly teach the blond little girl (that has turned sixteen in the meantime) how to make love, unblocks the Nile, obliterates the surviving minions of the evil Eos (black and brown alike), liberates all the good people and guides them back to "that very" Egypt of them in a merry river procession. I found the precedent three books bad but enjoyable. This one is just amazing. I have read it out of curiosity, how insane can it get? I do hope for the mental health of Mr. Smith that Taita is not his alter ego. I will read the next (and last one), just to assert whether this was just a crisis of sorts. One of the first books I truly loved was Sinuhe the egyptian by Mika Waltari. I wasn't expecting that when I started this series, but I wasn't expecting this either. Just one last thing, on the jacket of my edition of Sinuhe, the font size of Mika Waltari's name is much smaller than that of the title. Exactly the opposite applies to this book: the Quest, by Wilbur Smith. Bad things happen when people or fictional characters take themselves too seriously.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Sean Wylie

    The Quest was everything I love about a book. Epic historical adventure story with well-defined good vs. evil characters of an interesting time (ancient Egypt) with fascinating characters, magic, mythology, intrigue, battles, and surprises, set against an unlikely journey. You follow the adventures of the wise Taita, an old magus (wise-man / teacher / magician) who has already lived the life span of 4 generations of Egyptians, as he is sent by the Pharoah to uncover why the Nile has dried-up by The Quest was everything I love about a book. Epic historical adventure story with well-defined good vs. evil characters of an interesting time (ancient Egypt) with fascinating characters, magic, mythology, intrigue, battles, and surprises, set against an unlikely journey. You follow the adventures of the wise Taita, an old magus (wise-man / teacher / magician) who has already lived the life span of 4 generations of Egyptians, as he is sent by the Pharoah to uncover why the Nile has dried-up by traveling to its source deep in the unexplored depths of Africa. With a loyal following of 100 men Taita faces every challenge the journey has to offer from the un-relenting desert heat to the poisonous flies of endless bamboo swamps, all while withstanding the mental battering from a powerful witch and exploring the presence of an un-known yet familiar presence on the ‘ether’ that seems to be guiding his steps. This is actually the 4th book in this Tiata series, which I did not know until after I had finished the book. You do not need to read the earlier stories to enjoy this book. However, after reading the reviews on GoodReads it sounds like this 4th book was the least favorite for most people. I will absolutely be picking up the rest of the series. UPDATE: Finally reading this series in order and can say I truly love it more the second read as you have so much history with the characters! Ending sequence that just constantly gives you more thrills and highlights. I had an amazing time and one of the great ‘walk into the sunset scenes’ I can recall. UPDATE 2018: Having now read all books I wanted to share some notes on the chronology of the story. Things I would have liked to know before I started. Chronological order of the series: 1. River God (Book #1). Ends and is almost immediately followed by 2. Desert God (Book #5). End and is followed ~20 years later by 3. Pharaoh (Book #6). End and is followed ~60 years later by 4. Warlock (Book #3). End is followed ~40 years later by 5. The Quest (Book #4). End is followed ~3000 years later by 6. The Seventh Scroll (Book #2), which is set the 1970s. Order by my favorite: 1. River God (Book #1) 2. The Quest (Book #4) 3. Pharaoh (Book #6) 4. Warlock (Book #3) 5. Desert God (Book #5) 6. The Seventh Scroll (Book #2)

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kindra

    I only got through about 30 pages before I decided it wasn't worth my time and brain space to read more about the raging nymphomaniac goddess who sucks the souls out of the 'enlightened', strange sexual encounters between everyone conceivable and graphic physical operations. Really? All within 30 pages? Not sure if the author was just trying to grab your attention in the beginning to keep you interested, but if he was, I would have hoped he was capable of writing something at least remotely inte I only got through about 30 pages before I decided it wasn't worth my time and brain space to read more about the raging nymphomaniac goddess who sucks the souls out of the 'enlightened', strange sexual encounters between everyone conceivable and graphic physical operations. Really? All within 30 pages? Not sure if the author was just trying to grab your attention in the beginning to keep you interested, but if he was, I would have hoped he was capable of writing something at least remotely intelligent to do so rather than relying on sex and violence. Le sigh. Not sure why so many people seem to think that the more sex and violence a book has, the more 'mature' and 'sophisticated' it is, but this is one person who would rather pick up something else and feel uplifted or intellectually challenged. Perhaps this wasn't his best book, but for me it was yet another 'might as well call a spade a spade and buy a 10 cent romance novel instead.' That and a horror pick axe murder novel.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jody

    I can't believe I'm rating a Smith book 1 star. His books were some of the first adult books I read, and I relished them. I loved River God and Taita was a great character. In River God there was intrigue, character development, clever manipulation, love and hate and all set in a luxurious, exotic Egypt. None of things were present in The Quest, instead we spent more than half the book traveling for years (How many times did they eat wild spinach along the way?), and nothing much happened. There I can't believe I'm rating a Smith book 1 star. His books were some of the first adult books I read, and I relished them. I loved River God and Taita was a great character. In River God there was intrigue, character development, clever manipulation, love and hate and all set in a luxurious, exotic Egypt. None of things were present in The Quest, instead we spent more than half the book traveling for years (How many times did they eat wild spinach along the way?), and nothing much happened. There were inconsistencies in the story that clashed with what I remembered of the earlier books. Then after all the build up regarding this monstrous evil, Taita managed to defeat it very easily, and manage to find a huge bonus as well. Everything was neatly tided up, and it was rather mediocre. I'm just going to pretend River God is the only book in the series.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it'a Taita the Inccredible armed with a lock of hair!! One of my all-time favourite protagonists needs to save Egypt (again) from an evil presence that suffocates the Nile. Gripping story as Taita and his band of warriors travel into the depth of Africa to solve this crises. Smith does a fantastic job of graphically describing the procedures and encounters of the group - from the Chima cannibals to the Inner Eye every snap, gush and sinewy twist reverberates ten fol Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it'a Taita the Inccredible armed with a lock of hair!! One of my all-time favourite protagonists needs to save Egypt (again) from an evil presence that suffocates the Nile. Gripping story as Taita and his band of warriors travel into the depth of Africa to solve this crises. Smith does a fantastic job of graphically describing the procedures and encounters of the group - from the Chima cannibals to the Inner Eye every snap, gush and sinewy twist reverberates ten fold. I rather liked his reunion with the reborn Lostris, thankfully there wasn't a "Lolitta" plot. That would place Taita firmly in the Kiddy-Fiddler pile. Terrific book and was read faster than the other two (despite bing 500 pages).

  17. 4 out of 5

    Cornelia

    It's an exotic fantasy adventure set in ancient Egypt. The Quest has a strong sword and sorcery quality. Things in this book also tie in closely to the first one in the series, River God. It has a great ending line. Wilbur Smith is quite a story teller and I did enjoy the entire series though it's been a long time since I read the first two. It's an exotic fantasy adventure set in ancient Egypt. The Quest has a strong sword and sorcery quality. Things in this book also tie in closely to the first one in the series, River God. It has a great ending line. Wilbur Smith is quite a story teller and I did enjoy the entire series though it's been a long time since I read the first two.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Rita Chapman

    The Quest goes from fantasy to being totally unbelievable.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Christina Maxfield

    There are 4 books in this series and I actually started with this the last one which led me to reading the rest of them and then this one again. The first and third books of the series were books based on fact with generous fiction thrown in. Well, this one is packed to the brim with fiction with only a splattering of fact. Still a great read as I am into science fiction as well as historical based novels. This book continues main character Taita's already long life story (he's getting up to 200 There are 4 books in this series and I actually started with this the last one which led me to reading the rest of them and then this one again. The first and third books of the series were books based on fact with generous fiction thrown in. Well, this one is packed to the brim with fiction with only a splattering of fact. Still a great read as I am into science fiction as well as historical based novels. This book continues main character Taita's already long life story (he's getting up to 200 year old mark or older by this story). Very interesting read for those who enjoy this author and science fiction related to fact bases. Mr. Smith is a great writer.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Shahrun

    I remember absolutely loving Wilbur Smith's Ancient Egypt Trilogy a few years back - so I was super excited to find the series had been expanded! That was until I actually read this. It wasn't total shite, but was sorely lacking in that Wilbur Smith Magic of the earlier page turners, that left me hungry for more. What we have here could have been the most epic, action, adventure, dangerous and exciting story, but somehow fell short. I felt the dialogue was sometimes quite atrociously cliched, th I remember absolutely loving Wilbur Smith's Ancient Egypt Trilogy a few years back - so I was super excited to find the series had been expanded! That was until I actually read this. It wasn't total shite, but was sorely lacking in that Wilbur Smith Magic of the earlier page turners, that left me hungry for more. What we have here could have been the most epic, action, adventure, dangerous and exciting story, but somehow fell short. I felt the dialogue was sometimes quite atrociously cliched, the plot lacked a bit of imagination (things were just too perfect to be believable) and there was a massive anti climax with the battle between Truth & the Lie. But then there were some interesting characters (like the Shilluk and female warriors). I'm only so picky because when Wilbur gets it right he's so good. There are two more books in the series, I have ordered the next one and am prepaired to delve into it with an open mind. Let's hope I'm rewarded...

  21. 5 out of 5

    Marie Christine

    As usual, lots of adventure, battles, mysteries and phantasy... in short, lots of fun.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Eratta Sibetta

    Beautifully written and by that I mean that Wilbur Smith seemed to have the right words to articulate this wonderful story of Egypt. Really, every word was cleverly transcribed and as a writer, I was reading this novel to understand and appreciate just how difficult it is sometimes to write effortlessly. Unfortunately, some passages were a bit hard going for me and I got lost in the narration. You’ll see what I mean when you read this story. It’s a story centred on magic and mystery and the secr Beautifully written and by that I mean that Wilbur Smith seemed to have the right words to articulate this wonderful story of Egypt. Really, every word was cleverly transcribed and as a writer, I was reading this novel to understand and appreciate just how difficult it is sometimes to write effortlessly. Unfortunately, some passages were a bit hard going for me and I got lost in the narration. You’ll see what I mean when you read this story. It’s a story centred on magic and mystery and the secret knowledge of immortality, and for want of a better word - sorcery in all its perversities. For instance, the character of Eos spelt backwards is Soe i.e. I viewed this character as a seed of mystery and charm, whose whole purpose was to entice and lead or mislead men according to those secret teachings, which I supposed the writer researched for this story. And it soon turned out that Eos was just another whore who used men for her own advancement in the arts. What I failed to come to terms with was the betrayal Taita relegated to those who helped him retrieve his manhood. And for what? For our very Egypt, as he says. I say this with all seriousness because I think that a magus or great sage who has studied the arts knows or should know that Wisdom is a bitter pill. Foremostly, it’s unethical for a magus to betray those who first appear to aid us in the road to Wisdom. Or heal us when we fall prey to misfortune and loose a part of ourselves. As a Eunuch Taita ought to have had some level of restraint in pursuing his quest. Especially for those who restored his manhood. (By the way, between you and me, the idea of poking a needle into the iris to open the third eye seems absolutely ludicrous! I’ve never heard of that. I’ve heard of exercises and whatnot but removing the eye from the socket by scooping it out with a spoon? Then poking a needle into the iris and then plonking it’s back in afterwards is a little far fetched. Wilbur Smith needs to apply proper research to his stories if he wants to make them believable.) As I was saying about the Oligarchs, whatever their misdemeanours didn’t deserve to be treated like that from dear old Taita. How is it possible that one is so highly regarded in society and yet the same harbours treacherous preconceptions to people who treated him kindly. The oligarchs who treated first his friend Meren, then himself? In his single mindedness, does he not reduce himself to the same evil he claims he wishes to destroy? Also, I guessed Taita’s age to be about 69 to 79 when he set off on this quest. He was old. I put Fenn to be about 13 or so when they rescued her. What’s a white girl doing in the middle of Africa all by herself? Then she enters into a sexual relationship with Taita??? Seriously? To me, Taita represented the worst possible traitor who goes against Esoteric Wisdom and in his betrayal reduced his status to that of fiend. I almost expected him to decline the offer of receiving a brand new penis. And say he didn’t really need one. An aspirant of the truth will no longer burden themselves with useless illusions borne of this world. Loosing a limb, a tooth or a penis is of no consequence. You don’t attack those who aid you towards the light. In this regard the quest becomes unwarranted and unworthy of him. A true sage or magus does not battle with the realities of this world. Their purpose is to illuminate and teach others to sustain a balance with life and death and rebirth. Most have no time for the NOISE of this world. The true quest therefore ought to have been pointed toward a peaceful outcome and be at one with nature. To play the game of overcoming and or destroying the same rod or bar by which a decent mage or magus is measured seemed counterproductive. This was my observation of the whole quest. I then stood back to assess the evil with which Eos was branded with and laughed out loud when I saw similarities with how our world is currently going about this same problem of aiding the human race through medical science and advancements of (let me see, heart transplants, kidney, cornea, blood transfusions and all the rest of it. Including bone marrow transplants and growing skin in our laboratories for burn victims, or medical science engineering spinal medicine and treatments through stem cell research). I was a little annoyed at the characterisations of this Eos woman being perceived as evil, when in fact our own world seems to now revel in these same sciences. Understandably the story is set in Egypt during the time of the Pharoahs.....so that of course, these medical advancements seemed to be abhorrent and unethical. This made me understand that knowledge is a dangerous thing, especially when some people use it for their own ends. And then stand on the side of righteousness. But who is right and who is wrong? Each side will view the other side as evil or ignorant. As seen from the viewpoint of Dr Hanna and her comrades. I realised also the difficulties of how the writer must have grappled with portraying this to give the reader neutrality, allowing for the discernment of the reader etc. to make up their own minds about the quest. Certainly, The Writer might have tackled how he wanted the readers bias to show both sides of the coin by maybe using dialogue between Dr Hanna and the Oligarchs explaining their warped views to Taita and why they were doing what they were doing. For instance, the Oligarchs soon invite Taita to be one of them without telling us reasons behind their decision. Clearly, they trusted Taita; then soon after that all hell breaks loose when they conspire to kill him if or when he returns from the visit with the Goddess. So I thought the novel was very well written, but I’m afraid the story itself was rather lukewarm. Not convincing enough for me to haul this particular story as a great read. I read 1 or 2 Wilbur Smith novels way back as a teenager in my school days and can honestly say this was not one of my favourite reads. The other thing I found a trite annoying was the description of some characters like Meren or Fenn. Indeed even Taita himself. Which were not very well presented. I always thought Egyptians (most of them) appear tanned or perhaps olive skinned with Arab features. Just saying. So that to know that Taita and Fenn including the Oligarchs and Eos were all described as white was rather disappointing. Egyptians are not white. And I am always intrigued by writers or anyone who would describe them as clear and as breathtaking as an English Rose. So, I gave this story 3 stars because it’s one that will teach many writers like me how to READ and become a better writer. How to take care of the little points in a story that make a great impression on the reader, the reader who is an author and the reader who reads for enjoyment. And the reader who gives a decent review....

  23. 4 out of 5

    Kelli

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I'm not sure all of what I read here, and really, I'm only still finishing it because once Taita offed the big bad with his magical unicorn "manroot" by turning her into what seems to be a giant cockroach or something, I am just committed at this point. Really, I've survived the nonsense this far, I might as well see where this mess ends up. Suffice it to say that this was my first, and possibly last, Wilbur Smith book. I try to keep an open mind (I have read all the Anne Rice books, even the on I'm not sure all of what I read here, and really, I'm only still finishing it because once Taita offed the big bad with his magical unicorn "manroot" by turning her into what seems to be a giant cockroach or something, I am just committed at this point. Really, I've survived the nonsense this far, I might as well see where this mess ends up. Suffice it to say that this was my first, and possibly last, Wilbur Smith book. I try to keep an open mind (I have read all the Anne Rice books, even the ones where she's clearly lost her marbles, and I'm not above a good trashy romance novel) but so far, I got soul-sucking sexins with strangers in the first few chapters (which evidently will kill you, but what a way to go, man), the old dude waxing poetic about the breasts of a prepubescent girl, stem cell research with actual live babies, giant toads, crazy people, magical horses... I don't even know what I'm reading here. I love me some Egyptian fiction novels, every time I see one I want to read it even if it ends up being terrible, which I think is why I'm sticking this one out to the end. Previous reviewers suggest that these books are not all so insane, but now I'm leery of getting into more of this insanity with another book from Mr. Smith.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Ram

    Taita the warlock magician goes on a quest to save ancient Egypt and restore the waters of the Nile. I read the three previous related books (two are chronologically previous and one is related but happened in modern time). I liked the two that occurred in ancient Egypt. There was some magic but it was slight and could be interpreted as natural too. In this book the magic has a dominant part and is completely unnatural. Except for the fact that I did not expect it, it affected the book. The book Taita the warlock magician goes on a quest to save ancient Egypt and restore the waters of the Nile. I read the three previous related books (two are chronologically previous and one is related but happened in modern time). I liked the two that occurred in ancient Egypt. There was some magic but it was slight and could be interpreted as natural too. In this book the magic has a dominant part and is completely unnatural. Except for the fact that I did not expect it, it affected the book. The book is loaded with long and boring descriptions of , magic performances, mind battles between magicians, spiritual revelations, spiritual/religious experiences and ceremonies, dreams and visions and love making descriptions. I would say that about 30% of this book were these descriptions that basically are boring and I usually skip them. Except for that there is a nice story, exciting war stories (at least some of them, some of them with the intervention of magic become very unreliable). I enjoyed the descriptions of the ancient life, the hunting, cooking, technology and more. I do not think I will read another book of this series, I got the picture and now it is boring repetition .

  25. 5 out of 5

    Greer Andjanetta

    An epic story but needs to be grouped in the fantasy category. A very interesting story but based throughout on magic, reincarnation, out-of-body transportation, mind reading, etc. It is much easier to create a captivating story when the author does not have to keep within reality. Just as certain writers give their heroes immense personal wealth which lets them possess or acquire highly specialized, exotic or restricted equipment to help them escape impossible situations or track their targets, An epic story but needs to be grouped in the fantasy category. A very interesting story but based throughout on magic, reincarnation, out-of-body transportation, mind reading, etc. It is much easier to create a captivating story when the author does not have to keep within reality. Just as certain writers give their heroes immense personal wealth which lets them possess or acquire highly specialized, exotic or restricted equipment to help them escape impossible situations or track their targets, thereby allowing the authors to create wildly imaginative solutions to impossible situations, Smith's use of the impossible in this book lets him create a story that supercedes reality. An interesting story but totally unbelieveable, yet seemingly presented as fact.

  26. 4 out of 5

    María Ciancio

    There's more to dislike than to enjoy from this book, and it'd be a hard time trying to convince me that this one was ACTUALLY written by Wilbur Smith. Besides the continuity errors (and possible mistranslations, why not) it didn't seem to me as if the character's were themselves. But what is the worst, I felt as if Taita's, and every other character's story was bastardized. The esoteric content was an interesting and pleasant surprise to me -though I'm pretty sure many readers would disagree, as There's more to dislike than to enjoy from this book, and it'd be a hard time trying to convince me that this one was ACTUALLY written by Wilbur Smith. Besides the continuity errors (and possible mistranslations, why not) it didn't seem to me as if the character's were themselves. But what is the worst, I felt as if Taita's, and every other character's story was bastardized. The esoteric content was an interesting and pleasant surprise to me -though I'm pretty sure many readers would disagree, as it was quite a change in the genre, and admittedly not a wise move to keep the same audience-, but I did not like the manner in which it was used.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Saviour

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Wilbur Smith's books always have a broad sweep which I enjoy, particularly the 'Taita' novels which are based in ancient Egypt and are crammed with details of life in that civilisation. Readers looking for a similar hit here might be disappointed with this one, though. The story starts off in India, only very briefly visits Egypt and then takes off to central Africa, with the climax set in a Xanadu-like city peopled with immigrants from around the world. It's really Harry Potter with weird sex an Wilbur Smith's books always have a broad sweep which I enjoy, particularly the 'Taita' novels which are based in ancient Egypt and are crammed with details of life in that civilisation. Readers looking for a similar hit here might be disappointed with this one, though. The story starts off in India, only very briefly visits Egypt and then takes off to central Africa, with the climax set in a Xanadu-like city peopled with immigrants from around the world. It's really Harry Potter with weird sex and spells. In my humble opinion, not a patch on River God or even Warlock.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Camille Siddartha

    I cried when tiata turned into his young self and was able to be with his love fenn...who was a queen of egypt...It is sad because of my situation...I came here thinking I would be with my love and it turns out she was stuck in a time dilation...which means our ages are not even close... the good thing is that if I am certain...we will be dead in a couple of years so I can leave this shit hole of a planet... She might have the technology to change herself...if it was not stolen... then again... who I cried when tiata turned into his young self and was able to be with his love fenn...who was a queen of egypt...It is sad because of my situation...I came here thinking I would be with my love and it turns out she was stuck in a time dilation...which means our ages are not even close... the good thing is that if I am certain...we will be dead in a couple of years so I can leave this shit hole of a planet... She might have the technology to change herself...if it was not stolen... then again... who knows... great read.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kris Talbot

    love the whole series

  30. 5 out of 5

    Baron Rothschild

    good read

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