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Best order to read David Gemmell's Drenai books?

Brian G Turner

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I seem to recall from previous threads that this is something of a loaded question. :)

However, so far as I can tell, following chronologically (by Drenai time, not publication dates) then the best order to read these would be:

Waylander
Waylander II: In the Realm of the Wolf
Hero In the Shadows
First Chronicles of Druss the Legend
The Legend of Deathwalker
White Wolf
Legend
King Beyond the Gate
Quest for Lost Heroes
Winter Warriors
The Swords of Night and Day

Does that sounds about right?
 

biodroid

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Brian, I would stick with publication date as that's what DG intended. My friend has read most of them and he says it's better to read in publication order. Most of the novels aren't sequels, just stories set 100's of years after each book.

 

Bugg

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I seem to recall from previous threads that this is something of a loaded question. :)

However, so far as I can tell, following chronologically (by Drenai time, not publication dates) then the best order to read these would be:

Waylander
Waylander II: In the Realm of the Wolf
Hero In the Shadows
First Chronicles of Druss the Legend
The Legend of Deathwalker
White Wolf
Legend
King Beyond the Gate
Quest for Lost Heroes
Winter Warriors
The Swords of Night and Day

Does that sounds about right?
That's the order I've seen elsewhere, such as on the Legend Award site:

David Gemmell Chronological Order - The David Gemmell Legend Awards

Must admit, I haven't been reading them in any particular order, either publication date or chronologically. Knights of Dark Renown and Morningstar are also on that list in the link. Both fantastic books, btw.
 

barrett1987

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I've read many of them over the years but decided to start working through them in chronological order. I started with Waylander but found myself really bored with the book. The character was underwhelming from what i remember as a kid. Since finishing that i sped to white wolf. I remembered Skilgannon being a great character too so i hoped my memory was closer to the truth this time around. I wasn't disappointed. I'm really enjoying it. But i wonder how much of that is because he is allowed to be brooding badass while Druss is around.
 

Narkalui

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I have never read the Hawk Queen books. Or John Shannow or the Lion of Macedonia books. I think that because he's dead my library is always understocked on the Gemmell front. Frustrating.
 

Steve Wilson

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I do agree reading in publication order makes a lot of sense. As pointed out, this is what David Gemmell intended. You do get a decent full picture of the Drenai history doing that.

Still, reading them according to the Drenai world's main events' timeline is also quite a good choice I think.

TBH, both options work out pretty well in the end.

What's tricky about the timeline is that most books relate to events that are sometimes 100s or even 1'000s of years apart.

It's not like all events from one book take place, then come all events from the next book, etc. either.
For example, the first main event in the timeline could be the founding of Chiatze (8804 years before the 1st story of the books takes place), which can be read about in The Legend of Deathwalker.
The second event would be the founding of Kuan Hador (-4439), which can be read about in Waylander 3.
The next event from The Legend of Deathwalker for instance, would be in year 186, and loads happens in between, historical events you can learn about in many books.

So it is quite messy, and I trust putting together this timeline was a hell of a job (well done to who ever did this, awesome work there!), but it does make a lot of sense to read the Drenai Saga in the timeline order.

Can't post links yet, but I have the complete 'historical' reading order and the Drenai Timeline on my David Gemmell fan site...
I'll come back and post the links ASAP.

Feed back much appreciated BTW... :)
 

Ray McCarthy

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reading in publication order makes a lot of sense. As pointed out, this is what David Gemmell intended. You do get a decent full picture of the Drenai history doing that.

Still, reading them according to the Drenai world's main events' timeline is also quite a good choice I think.

TBH, both options work out pretty well in the end.
If in doubt I tend to read a series the FIRST time in published order, or possibly author suggested order,if known, then 2nd time I might read in timeline order if I remember it well, otherwise not to avoid spoilers. (c.f. The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe vs Magician's Nephew which is 1st in timeline but always really ought to be read penultimately to the last battle. Early boxed sets had them in written order = published order, later sets incorrectly number them and place them in timeline order)
 

Brian G Turner

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Welcome to chrons! Always great to have another Gemmell fan here. :)

That's in the order of the Drenai world's official timeline (approved by david Gemmell himself!).
Is that this timeline here?
THE DRENAI SAGA TIMELINE - The David Gemmell Fanzone

KoDR = Knights of Dark Renown
M = Morningstar
W = Waylander
W2 – itRotW = Waylander 2 – In the Realm of the Wolf
W3 – HitS = Waylander 3 – Hero in the Shadows
tFCoDtL = the First Chronicles of Druss the Legend
tLoD = the Legend of Deathwalker
WWolf = White Wolf
L = Legend
KBtG = King Beyond the Gate
QfLH = Quest for Lost Heroes
WWarriors = Winter Warriors
tSoN&D = the Swords of Night and Day
 

Steve Wilson

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Is that this timeline here?
THE DRENAI SAGA TIMELINE - The David Gemmell Fanzone
Yep, that's the link to the timeline page.

The timeline is right under that actually.
You have to unlock it, my webmaster put that there to help the blog's SEO I think or whatever, just click on share with twitter and close the window to unlock, you don't really have to share. Just don't tell my webmaster I gave you the trick. ;)
 

Steve Wilson

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Yep, that's the link to the timeline page.

The timeline is right under that actually.
You have to unlock it, my webmaster put that there to help the blog's SEO I think or whatever, just click on share with twitter and close the window to unlock, you don't really have to share. Just don't tell my webmaster I gave you the trick. ;)
Just wanted to say the social lockers are no longer protecting the resources on my David Gemmell fansite.
 

Zed

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I have read the entire drenai saga and I have to say some books are better than others. All were a decent read, but Waylander 2, Druss chronicles and the Skillgannon books imo weren't quite up to the same standard as others.
I can't really rate one as being the best, but my personal favourite is kbtg, closely followed equally by Legend, Winter Warriors and Hero in the Shadows.
I don't think there is a specific order to read the books but I would recommend reading Winter Warriors and Hero in the Shadows together as they have linked story lines. Legend and kbtg go together as a package too.
 
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