Read The Last Four Things by PaulHoffman Online


The epic story of Thomas Cale-introduced so memorably in "The Left Hand of God"--continues as the Redeemers use his prodigious gifts to further their sacred goal: the extinction of humankind and the end of the world. To the warrior-monks known as the Redeemers, who rule over massive armies of child slaves, "the last four things" represent the culmination of a faithful lifThe epic story of Thomas Cale-introduced so memorably in "The Left Hand of God"--continues as the Redeemers use his prodigious gifts to further their sacred goal: the extinction of humankind and the end of the world. To the warrior-monks known as the Redeemers, who rule over massive armies of child slaves, "the last four things" represent the culmination of a faithful life. Death. Judgement. Heaven. Hell. The last four things represent eternal bliss-or endless destruction, permanent chaos, and infinite pain. Perhaps nowhere are the competing ideas of heaven and hell exhibited more clearly than in the dark and tormented soul of Thomas Cale. Betrayed by his beloved but still marked by a child's innocence, possessed of a remarkable aptitude for violence but capable of extreme tenderness, Cale will lead the Redeemers into a battle for nothing less than the fate of the human race. And though his broken heart foretells the bloody trail he will leave in pursuit of a personal peace he can never achieve, a glimmer of hope remains. The question even Cale can't answer: When it comes time to decide the fate of the world, to ensure the extermination of humankind or spare it, what will he choose? To express God's will on the edge of his sword, or to forgive his fellow man-and himself? ...

Title : The Last Four Things
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780718155216
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 422 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Last Four Things Reviews

  • Laz
    2019-02-01 20:47

    Wow, I'm so disappointed. I think I just wasted my time. How did this get so bad and so out of control? I had liked the first book, really liked it and I got into this hoping and wishing for a book that would blew me away... Instead, I got a bland, boring book..I swear, by the end of the book nothing has really happened. I did an experiment while reading the book and read some paragraphs and skipping some because I felt like there were lots of detail with no reason whatsoever. The writing, the plot.. Everything is all over the place. The author overdoes it a bit, I think he's too dramatic for his own good and sometimes what he describes is incoherent. The plot instead of thickening, it goes thinner and thinner and by the end of the book it had dried out.The characters.. I don't like the lot of them, not after reading this. The characters felt shallow and empty with no feelings whatsoever and while I forgave them in the first book for being this way, I did because they were all their lives grown to a certain way of life, but even after so long out there, they still remain cold and soulless.I don't really know if I'm going to read the next book. Maybe if I did read it, I'd do it for closure rather than interest......

  • Ruth
    2019-02-19 20:13

    c2011. From Hero to zero - considering how much I enjoyed the first book. I did not find this to be "epic" which is how it is described by the publisher. By the author's own admission, this story contains "many acts of righteous larceny" culling, distorting and summarising some well known historical events and personalities. While I felt that he got away with it in the first book, this second book was a real mish mash cobbled loosely together (see what I mean). I actually hated this book...disappointed and aggrieved. By using all the names of known places etc, it went from a quiddity to painful. This was the last place I expected to read about the Boer War - but yes it appears and the Boers have turned into Folk (from Die Volk, I am guessing). The Last Four Things referred to in the title are "Death, Judgement, Heaven and Hell". Nothing seems to happen in this book other than a lot of death - some meaningful and others, not so much. Yes - wait for the quip that is just waiting to be used - Hell was starting the book and Heaven was finally finishing it and accepting that this was just a duffer. I don't think that there is even a plot just a chance for the author to link "cleverly" a whole lot of random "stuff". Hated it and won't bother with the 3rd. **Boo Hoo****** I want my money back.......

  • Gavin
    2019-02-03 19:48

    This had a very different feel to the first book in the series. I was more of a droll military fantasy. I liked it, but not as much as the first book. The plot lacked the humor and fast pace of the first book, but was still interesting enough. I enjoyed learning more of Bosco's plans for Cale and the world as a whole and his scheming made for compelling reading. He does think big! Cale is still an interesting character to read about, but he is a bit less likable in this one as he was still struggling to come to terms with Arbell's betrayal. Both Vague Henry and IdrisPukke had smaller roles and that is largely the reason why this lacked the humor of the first book. Kleist has a subplot of his own and it was good to learn more about him as a character. He is not the most likable guy ever, but I felt like he grew over the course of this book. All three of the younger characters are a great mix of cynical and naive. It makes them easy to like despite some of their actions. The ending was quite a shock and it will be interesting to see how things develop in the third book.Rating: 4 stars. Audio Note: Sean Barrett's performance is nothing short of fantastic. I'd not be surprised if he added at least a star to my rating! He just gets the dry cynical humor of this story.

  • Liviu
    2019-02-03 22:49

    Below quick thoughts as I was reading the book; as usual I will c/p the full FBC review in due course4/16; Some 1/3-1/2 in the book and it is as crazily inventive and good as The Left Hand of God, with the same alternating of styles, tones and narrative modes; there is considerably more backstory and world building and things make sense and hang together well, but the same "all but the kitchen sink" is thrown in and this one has some stuff that's even more outrageously funny than in The Left Hand of God and I found myself shaking with laughter often, though the book is also pretty dark and not for the easily offended.The Pyramid of Lincoln and (the Bosco ordered forgery to save his and Cale's bacon) The Protocols of the Moderators of Antagonism are among the many early "pearls", and even more than in The Left Hand of God, The Last Four Things abounds with such play on the famous and infamous from history, always well done imho...And there are battles, treachery, fights, blunders, deep seated plans that may or may not work...Edit 4/18: About 100 pages to go out of 400+ and The Last Four Things has been all I expected and more; I would have easily finished the book in the weekend but I enjoy it so much that I do not want it to end so every 100-150 pages I reread them before going forward.Even now and I have no real idea where it will go - I expect a particular ending to this one but who knows, the author keeps throwing surprises as well as underlining how the best laid plans just break because of stupidity, misunderstandings or pure chance. The "all but the kitchen sink" famous and infamous from history continues to delight and the book is just awesome - better than The Left Hand of God in some ways because it hangs things together and makes sense of the "big picture"...Cale, Bosco, Vague Henry, Kleist and a few more new characters are shining - of course Cale first and foremost - but the rest have also great lines on occasion.Edit 4/18 later I finished the book and while what I expected to happen, happened, the book went further, twisted again and left me a bit stunned without again having much of a clue about what's going to happen in the 3rd volume; this time the author has a great two page explanation about his sources, including famous philosophers,Catholic thinkers, poets, obscure manuals of war that are available online and one (in)famous speech of Saddam Hussein (seems to be on YouTube) that *** cribs here before ***.All in all The Last Four Things takes the promise of the Left Hand of God, fulfills it and more in a considerably more complex book this time with all the world building that was only hinted there, but keeping the narrative switches and the many twists, while the trilogy finale is something I really, really want asap...Also this is another book like The Clockwork Rocket that will take a while to process, though here I am just somewhat stunned by the ending since the book kept getting darker and darker and went beyond emotion in some ways, more like say The Kindly Ones than the usual sffFull FBC Review:INTRODUCTION: Last year's The Left Hand of God was a novel that elicited very powerful but mixed responses; there were people that loathed it or thought it's the worst hyped debut of the year and there were people, including myself, that utterly loved it and thought it was awesome. So The Last Four Things was one the five novels I marked as must read, try and get a copy as soon as possible, etc for 2011 though I was a little apprehensive if the "magic" of The Left Hand of God will still be there for me, or the series will be exposed as "emperor's new clothes" as many others have claimed.Once I opened it and I got entranced once more in the twisted world of Thomas Cale and the Redemeers, I applied my reading method for books I do not want to end - read 100 pages, reread them, read another 100 pages and then read the full 200, etc.Due to circumstances I was not able to write this review for the earlier UK publication, so I postponed it for today's US publication and that added the time dimension since now after several months I can look back and evaluate it better.OVERVIEW/ANALYSIS: I want to start by remarking that The Last Four Things is a book that most likely will have the same resonance as The Left Hand of God with the reader. You hated that, don't bother; you loved it, get this asap.I make this claim since the things that distinguished The Left Hand of God from the run-of-the-mill dark bad boy fantasy that is in vogue today - the alternation of styles, from exuberant to really dark, the mostly superb word plays on the famous and infamous in history, the strange and occasionally merciless undertones and the twists and turns that truly made the next pages unpredictable are still there.However there are some notable differences too. The Last Four Things has considerably more backstory and world building - and indeed things make sense and hang together eliminating one of my fears after the sketched world of the previous novel, namely that the author's world won't make sense in detail. But it does and here we see things like logistics, speed of communication, population sizes, etc, all adding depth and painting a full 3D picture.The characters also get more texture, though the third person narrative allows Thomas Cale to still remain a mystery; now he is coming into his own, far from the scared boy genius of The Left of God, to the outwardly confident man that events if not age made him be. His master, tormentor and protector, Redemeer Bosco comes also into his own here and the novel is as much about his plans as about Thomas Cale's odyssey, so now we have two extremely powerful and larger than life characters not only one. And in a partly comic relief, partly wistful role, Kleist gets his own thread too, though I found it less interesting than the main Bosco/Cale one.The other personages from the debut - Vague Henry, IdrisPukke, Vipond, Arbell and Conn Materazzi, etc - make also appearances and several more secondary but quite interesting characters are introduced too, while some of the scenes between them and Cale are utterly memorable and constitute a key to the ending which is another stunner. There was a point in the book where I thought I know what will happen and how The Last Four Things will end, but the author turned and surprised me once again making the trilogy ending another book to beg and cajole for as early a copy as possible."All but the kitchen sink" is still thrown in and The Last Four Things has some stuff that's even more outrageously funny than in The Left Hand of God, so I found myself shaking with laughter often, though the book is also pretty dark and not for the easily offended. The Pyramid of Lincoln and The Protocols of the Moderators of Antagonism - the Bosco ordered forgery to save his and Cale's bacon after the events in The Left Hand of God and Cale's defection - are among the many early "pearls" and the book abounds with these historical allusions as interpreted by the author.In a very nice touch, the author has a great two page explanation about his sources, including famous philosophers, Catholic thinkers, poets, obscure manuals of war that are available online and one (in)famous speech of Saddam Hussein which seems to be on YouTube, speech that *** cribs in the book before ***. Since it's a Saddam speech, the last **** should be easily guessed at.After some months have passed from finishing the novel, there is one weakness I missed in the emotion of the first read - The Last Four Things is ultimately a transitional middle book and while it has a clear theme and an ending to one of its main threads, we still remain a bit in the dark where all ultimately will go; as mentioned, I thought I had an idea, but the ending quickly disabused me of that.Overall The Last Four Things (A++) takes the promise of The Left Hand of God and fulfills it in a more complex book with all the world building that was only hinted there, but keeping the narrative switches and the many twists, while the trilogy finale is something I really want asap...

  • Lord Nouda
    2019-02-14 16:00

    If anything, it was only marginally better than the first book. In other words, still completely horrible to read. The Last Four Things was a confusing mess of random turn of events, spurred on by the whims of characters who themselves don't know what they want to do. If the plot wasn't being predictable as hell, it was being entirely random; kind of like a retard wandering around a well-known paved road and then deciding in his little mad head to go off the path into the unknown.1. The battles were short, underwhelming and overly pathetic.2. The interactions between characters were shallow and dull.3. The motivations and actions of some of the primary characters are as fluid as water and just as random.4. The random mixing of names and places from the Real World (ours) into this imaginary universe serves only to heighten the sense of confusion one gets when reading this novel. 5. The immaturity of the main character, Thomas Cale, was pretty much the death knell that sunk the book. How can such a blood-thirsty person and a genius at military warfare in his late teens, still act like the 12 year old acolyte he was in the first book? Surely all the blood and gore flowing as a result of his actions/planning would have made him far wiser and mature. But no, it seems like he regressed into the child-like and immature little brat that author wants him to be.Overall, the this is one of the worst books I've read in all my life. The first was pure shit. The second only marginally better (as if putting a cherry on top of the pile of shit would somehow make it better)

  • Michael Sliter
    2019-02-18 21:51

    Review to follow

  • Nick Brett
    2019-02-06 16:51

    I was underwhelmed by The Left Hand of God, while I thought it had potential it was also flawed. The test was going to be whether the author built on the potential or not. Sadly, in The Last Four Things the flaws are much more evident in a rather difficult read where the author seems to have abandoned the potential and built in more flaws! The narrative style seems different, with a smug observational style and the author then rather over indulges himself in the very things that jarred in the first novel! Lead character Cale continues to be hard to emphasise with and indeed it is hard to relate to anyone in this novel. Add to that a somewhat meaningless plot set in a world that has many familiar names and places and yet is not `our' world, yet the author offers no explanation. This was very painful to read, a real chore and an utter waste of a few reading hours. Avoid like the plague, if ever there was a book where the editor or publisher needed to step in and re-direct the author, this is it.

  • Joana
    2019-02-16 22:50

    Ora portanto, resumindo o livro numa "palavra": nhe.Quando li A Mão Esquerda de Deus, ao início achei o livro um pouco parado e desinteressante. No entanto a partir mais ou menos das 100 pág a história começou a tornar-se interessante. Parecia que as coisas aconteciam com uma finalidade.Quando parti para As Quatro Últimas Coisas ia preparada para que pudesse, eventualmente, acontecer o mesmo. Um início mais morno e depois desenvolvimentos interessantes. Não podia ter ficado mais decepcionada. O livro começa e termina com críticas mais que directas à igreja. Não tenho problema nenhum com isso, deixo já este esclarecimento. Mas quando comprei este livro não foi de certeza com o intuito de ler um texto reflexivo contra a igreja, foi sim com a ideia de ler uma história interessante. Isso não aconteceu. A verdade é que basicamente não existe história. O livro não passa de um enorme enrolanço. Antes do meio do livro sentia-me confusa e já não percebia para quê tantas voltas e afinal qual a finalidade de tudo aquilo porque os personagens estavam a passar, que diga-se de passagem, não eram nada de especial pois tudo se resolvia com estrema rapidez. As personagens parecem ter perdido profundidade ao longo da história em vez de a ganharem, principalmente Cale. Sinceramente deixou de me dizer o que quer que seja. A única personagem que talvez me continue a agradar é o Henri Vago.Resumindo e baralhando, não vale a pena ir para este livro à espera de uma boa história. Vão mais preparados para uma lavagem cerebral. A ideia que este livro dá é que foi escrito essencialmente para "encher chouriços".

  • Hanna
    2019-01-23 21:45

    hanging on the three star border...I want to love the books in this series. I probably do a bit. So let me explain my rating...When reading the first book I fell in love with the main character. And the idea for the story? Wow. Very nice there Hoffman! But when I finished the first one I was left with the thought that not a lot had actually happened in it. Sure, there were parts of action and big revelations, but when I turned the last page I was still waiting for that something. Never the less was I totally excited for the second installment. I though the style of the first one must surely have been just because of that: lacking because we were just getting to know the characters. Everything would probably come together better and dig deeper into Cale as a character in the second one. But is just... didn't. I am starting to wonder, and worry, if this is really the way the author writes his books. Still, the end was a magnificent cliffhanger that makes me want to buy the next book right this second. Huh.. Guess I'm reading the third one despite the lack of that something. How does that equation add up?

  • Mark Harrison
    2019-02-04 21:09

    Book two of the series. Now recaptured Cale seems destined to help the Redeemers defeat all enemies and bring darkness down on the world. Feeling betrayed and now separated from his friends he attacks the role with relish out generaling all comers in brutal battles. The book is grim, dark and utterly gruesome with maybe one character with a hint of redeeming features. Having said that I love the edgy feel and the matter of fact brutality is not gratuitous. All in all a good series and looking forward to seeing how it concludes.

  • Kristina Čechová
    2019-02-10 19:01

    Thomas Cale. Čtyři poslední věci je již druhý díl této trilogie. Pro hlavního hrdinu mám opravdu velkou slabost. Již v prvním díle si mě získal svou krutostí, chytrostí, nebojácností, ale také dobrým srdcem. Po přečtení druhého dílu jsem si říkala, že by Thomasovi neuškodila ještě krutější povaha. Obvykle to nesnesu, ale tenhle akolyta si o to naprosto říká. Nicméně, ačkoli jsem byla z pokračování Levé ruky Boží unešena, nemohu říci, že by bylo stejně tak výborné. Ani nedokážu přesně popsat v čem, ale zkusím něco vypotit. Možná si Thomas zasloužil více prostoru, ale něco mi říká, že ten prostor, který autor věnoval i jiným postavám a různým dějům, budou nezbytné pro další pokračování. Co se týče jeho milované Arbell, kéž by dostala více prostoru i ona, ale opět, mám takové tušení, že ona a Thomas si společné chvíle užijí v posledním díle. Stejně jako při mnoha jiných trilogiích mi i zde přišlo, že je druhý díl jakýsi mezičlánek k famóznímu finále. Co bych ale neměla nechat jen tak ladem je fakt, kolik kvalitní „šťávy“ dodal autor tomuto dílu. Dřív než jsem dočetla do konce, musela jsem si přečíst čtyřstránkový doslov autora a byla jsem naprosto uchvácena, co všechno musel přečíst a prostudovat, aby měl pro knihu tolik nápadů. On sám se nestydí přiznat, z kolika různých zdrojů čerpal a ktreými se nechal inspirovat, budiž pochválen, jelikož většina čtenářů by se k takovým materiálům zjevně nikdy nedostala. Tak tedy, Thomas Cale, Váhavý Henry a Kleist (obzvláště na tohohle klučinu se v příštím díle těším, jelikož jeho příběh je také velmi zajímavý), to jsou nejdůležitější jména, která vedou celý děj. Iddris Pukke dostal jen velmi málo prostoru (škoda, chyběly mi jeho hlášky), vykupitel Bosco se naprosto ohromil svým chováním vůči Caleovi a musím říct, že si mě trochu získal svou láskou ke Caleovi, jelikož se zdá, že on jediný v něj maximálně věří i přes všechny nesnesitelná příkoří, která mu prováděl v prvním díle. No a nakonec je tu podvraťák Gil – něco jako rádce Bosca. Proč podvraťák? V posledních řádcích této knihy se to dozvíte. Snad nemusím říkat, jak nesmírně se těším na druhé pokračování a v momentě, kdy píši tyhlety řádky, ještě stále nevím, kolik hvězdiček dát. Když dám čtyři, mám pocit, že knihu urazím, když dám pět, urazím první díl, který byl doopravdy o malý chloupek lepší… Po deseti minutách rozjímání jsem se rozhodla, že dám hvězdiček pět. Jelikož Paul Hoffman je člověk, který přelomil moji bariéru strachu a odmítavosti číst cokoli z historické fantasy. Za tohle mu opravdu vděčím.

  • Katrina Ly
    2019-02-05 21:01

    this book was just as great as the first book. It had an awesome plot which contains a twist at the end which you will NEVER (and believe me when i say NEVER) see coming. The writing was as gripping as always and no less expected from paul Hoffman whose fast becoming one of my favourite authors. now, some people might say that this book was darker than the first and to a degree this is true but its only because this book doesn't have all that sappy romance in it (not that there's anything wrong with that. i kind of like sappy romances but I like both people in the relationship to feel the same way). In the four things, the world into which we were introduced before is developed further and you delve further into this fictional world, learning more of its histories and cultures. Which was very interesting. as some of you may have realised, I tend to base my star ratings on the awesome-ness of the main character, the plot and the way is written. So to me, as you might've guessed, this character was freaking amazing. to all those thinking of reading this book, here's a little run down of what to expect. First of all, this is not a book for the faint-hearted. If you love happy endings, perfect characters who never make mistakes and bright, cheerful atmospheres, DO NOT read this book. However if you don't mind dark, gritty books which pull you into a world of corruption and conspiracy, epic plans and battles and ingenious schemes with a little hint of romance (or a lot) and complicated relationships with friends, READ THIS NOW. So what can you expect? this book starts off right where it left off in the left hand of god. From there you follow the torment and misery of Cale as he descends steadily into the darkness as well as other threads from other character's old and new like IdrisPukke, Vague henry and Bosco, all the way up to the inevitable and mind-bloeing twist at the end of the story that just makes you want the next book ASAP.So in conclusion if you don't mind dark books, read all about the epic and tragic (wait actually ignore that, he might have a happy ending) of Cale.SPOILER ALERToh my god i feel so sorry for Cale. After all the harshness of his childhood and all the cruelty he had to endure...and the ungratefulness of most of those he had saved....I'm not really surprised Cale ended up the way he was. His fighting and tactical skills awe soooo awesome though. like seriously. its freaking awesome.SPOILER FINISHED

  • Robin Carter
    2019-01-27 14:46

    "The Last Four Things"So how does the sequel to "The Left Hand of God" fare? I think for a lot of people it will have a similar marmite effect, it is one of those books that leaps and bounds around the imagination, pulling references from the literary world willy-nilly EG: Edmund Spencer's A view of the present state of Ireland, to show a description of starvation (which Hoffman does in gruesome fashion), the king James bible, a Boer war training manual and many more. As well as ideas from historical references and a geographical elasticity that just boggles the mind, Spanish Leeds being just one example a story that is laced with cynicism at so many elements of society and religion. In this book there is also a heavy dose of cynicism aimed at the ease of propaganda and its use in society to tip the balance of power to any intended use.I have read reviews that state the characters are flat and some of the prose ill formed, I personally have to disagree, I have found that the characters are growing well with the books, there is a very dark dangerous brooding character to Cale, and Vague Henry and Kleist really are growing as individuals in this book with unique characters that really shine out from the page, if they are less dynamic than Cale it feels deliberate to me because what else could they be when this attention black hole enters the room/ page.For me this is one of the most original fantasy series in many years, I have been put off fantasy in many ways since the death of David Gemmell, and this is one of the few authors able to drag me back.I highly recommend this to anyone who likes their fantasy, their dark novels, and also to those fans of Historical fiction who like to dabble in fantasy...but you MUST read left hand of God before this book, it is the one weakness that the books really cannot be read in isolation. (Parm)

  • Jason
    2019-02-07 17:11

    4 StarsThe Last Four Things by Paul Hoffman picks up right where the first book the Left Hand of God left off. After my first read through the first book, I doubted that I would ever go on with the series. I decided to reread the first book, and I am glad that I did. The problems that I had with it the first time through now seemed forgivable and the story felt fresh and new. It is rare but on occasion a second time through can change your perspective. Here I am now having completed the second book and glad for the ride…“‘Death, Judgement, Heaven and HellThe last four things on which we dwellMortification, death and sinThese are the clothes that we lie in.’”This is a much smaller scoped story and plot but the book is epic in its adventure and battles. We are treated to more story and more development of Cale. “‘Why would you do such a terrible thing? Because it is in your nature to do so. You are not a man, you are God’s anger made flesh. There is enough of mankind in you to wish to be other than what you are. You want to love, you want to show kindness, you want to be merciful. But in your heart you know you are none of these things. That is why people hate you and why the more you try to love them the more they fear you. This is why the girl betrayed you and why you will always be betrayed as long as you live. You are a wolf pretending to himself that he is a lamb.”The story moves along at a brisk pace and I found that I had quickly read through it. I recommend this series and will be quickly moving on to the next book.

  • Blodeuedd Finland
    2019-01-23 21:14

    Sure I read it fast, but would I have read on if this had been book 1...? No. I have to read it ok then.The thing is that nothing happened, and if something happened it was rather fast and dull. What is Cole now? 15? Srsly he should be older, I cannot take him for serious. He goes from lamenting over Arbell (how old was she anyway? euww.) to butchering people. All while I am all, just put a arrow through his neck. That kid needs a talking to. I liked him in book 1, there he was growing, here I cannot forget what a kid he is.Also, is this our world or not!? If not, then why use our places names? Lame! If so, then how can they move so fast from one part to another? It is starting to annoy me, just make it fantasy and without a map I would not know.The crazy religious people, well you know what, crazy is always interesting and I hope they all die.It does sound like there are only bad things, oh! I forgot about the changing of tense, so annoying! But yeah, it does hold promise, but this book had a serious case of second book syndrome.

  • Alice Spades
    2019-02-16 20:06

    a primeira metade do livro foi dolorosa, não aconteceu absolutamente nada de relevante. depois lá ganhou algum interesse, mas mesmo assim tive de ler algumas partes 'na diagnonal'. espero que o último livro seja melhor tbh

  • Despina Frantzi
    2019-02-22 17:00

    Not as good as the first one. This book was dragging and I had to skip so many pages about war and stuff that I didn't need to read about. Only in the last few pages,the plot started to become more interesting. I hope the next book is like the first one.

  • Sarah
    2019-02-01 22:56

    The Last Four Things is the sequel to Left Hand of God.It continues to follow the story of Thomas Cale, now back with the Redeemers, and separated from his two `friends'.I will start with what I liked. The first thing, which I also liked about the first book, was what feelings I have when reading about Cale. I feel pity, sympathy, but mixed in with disgust. Sometimes his actions make me cringe, and his coldness make me fear he knows no remorse, his actions make him seem like a stone-cold killer. At other times however, I empathise with his burden, think him a hero, a saviour, etc. Safe to say, very mixed emotions. But that is perfect, as that is what most people in the book feel towards Cale. Admiration mixed with fear. I very much like the way the author conveys these sentiments and drags the reader into the jumble of emotions. This is no ordinary protagonist.In my review of the first book, I commented on the narration, where the author seemingly talks to the reader. To explain subtext, or what I really liked, upon introducing a new character, in a very absorbing way, will delve into who the new character really is, and who people perceive him to be. In the first book, this form of narration would show itself sometimes, but not often enough to really represent `the' style in which the book was written. I feel the author fixes that with this second installment. His narrative style is now truly the style that is used throughout the book, and it serves the book well. There is more consistency.I find this book much better written than the first one, not only because of the narrative style, but also because it has grown somewhat more verbose. It feels less `simple' because of the wording. Verbose for the sake of being verbose is never a good thing. But often it adds to the story, and it definitely does here. Events have more depth because they are better described. Characters are introduced more elaborately making you wonder whether to store all that information, because this person might turn out to be important. Or will he? Seeds of doubt are planted with much more skill than in the first book, where some things were quite transparent.However, there are some things I don't like.I feel that more than half of the book is filled with battle tactics. It goes on and on and on and on. If this was a first book, I would shrug and say `okay, not the book for me, moving on'. But this is the second in the series. The first also had battle strategies, but when reading the first, I don't think anyone expects the second to be that much centered around strategizing. It was like the promise of the first book, content wise, was broken with the second book. Everyone that sees this through though, that manages to wrestle through all of the fighting talk, is awarded generously with again, an excellent and powerful ending which will make you crave the sequel.The twist and turns in the plot are interesting, but I dare not judge more thoroughly than that. In the first book, there was (what seemed to be) an interesting plotline, starting at the beginning, concerning an item Cale finds. This plotline was (seemingly) tied off neatly by explaining what the item was. It left me dissatisfied and it felt a bit weak. The author definitely knows how to create plotlines that make you want to read on and find out how they end. But I hope, not every created plotline is finished up as clumsily as that of the item which I talk about in this paragraph. Promise is there, definitely, execution of ending could be better. However! I dare not claim that the ending of the plotline as I perceive it, is the true ending of said plotline. Things have a way of popping back up. So maybe, I will get to eat my words later, I very much hope I will.To conclude; I thought the second book was better written than the first, massively better even, but I felt the pacing of the first (without the constant battle tactics) was faster, and the plotlines pushed you to read on. Even though this book is not perfect (very few are), I definitely recommend any fantasy reader to read this, as I feel most will very much enjoy it.

  • Indah Threez Lestari
    2019-01-24 19:48

    898 - 2016Rasanya lebih suka buku pertamanya, deh...

  • Mark
    2019-02-19 20:57

    The Last Four Things continues the story begun in The Left Hand of God with Thomas Cale - the young man heralded as the 'Incarnation of God's Wrath' - back in the hand of the Redeemers and his erstwhile and hated master Bosco. Bosco believes that God has ordained the race of mankind to be destroyed for it's imperfection and that Cale is the instrument of the Almighty's anger.Cale, heartbroken and disillusioned by the events in the first book, goes along with Bosco's direction as life with the Redeemers is one he understands, if not cares for. He is sent to turn the tide in the war against the Antagonists and lead Redeemer forces to victory, so that Bosco will be able to reap the rewards of his protege's successes and gain futher power. This Cale accomplishes in a typically ruthless manner.We also follow Cale's former cronies Vague Henri and Kleist. Kleist, having abandoned his fellow Redeemers to get as far away from his former life as possible, inadvertantly saves the life of a young girl who he subsequently falls for. She brings him back to her tribe - a group of cheerfully craven bandits. Vauge Henri doggedly follows Cale in the hope that, with IdrisPukke's help, he can be made to escape the Redeemers again.As with the first book, I am little confused with the tone. The style of narration and the prose used is both florid and knowingly sardonic. The story veers from pitch black humour to poignancy to uber-violence to ridiculous and back at breakneck speed. As with the previous installment I enjoyed the blatant potshots at the absurdity of religion which seems one of the major themes of the book.Even more than in the first book Hoffman uses real place names to populate this world like Switzerland, The Rhine, Stuttgart and most notably for me - my hometown Leeds which is cheerfully insulted, even in a fictional world. Maybe it shouldn't be a big point but it jars me from fully enjoying the story. I get that maybe Hoffman is trying for the 'dark mirror of the real world' but Terry Pratchett manages a similar line without re-using existing names.Having said all that I enjoyed this book immensely despite it's flaws and uneven nature.

  • drey
    2019-01-23 23:09

    When we last saw Thomas Cale, he'd just gone through battle and heartbreak, then was handed over to the Redeemer who made Cale's life at the Sanctuary positively miserable. He learns that Redeemer Bosco actually has a plan for him--to mold him into the Angel of Death. And as it happens, so far Cale has been pretty darn good at bringing chaos and ruin wherever he goes...Now, to say that Cale is an evil mastermind is completely overstating it--he's just had a combination of (mostly) bad luck and overconfident ego. Which doesn't change in The Last Four Things... He's still a cocky teenager, only now he has the Redeemers behind him. He's still furious at Arbell's betrayal--though what else was she to do? And he's still a teenager, thumbing his nose at the Redeemers when he doesn't think they'll get it, and even sometimes when they do.So then are we surprised that calamity and glory meet Cale in equal increments in this sequel? Why, of course not.I expected Cale to do a little growing up here. Yes, I know he's had fifteen years of indoctrination by the Redeemers, but he's had time--and he's smart enough--to figure out that not everything they say is truth. So I was a little disappointed when he mostly reverts to his former self (though he's verbal now) and nurses resentments that he might not if he'd just grow up a little...There's a lot of tongue-in-cheek humor in The Last Four Things, as well as a lot of needless bloodshed. Of course, all bloodshed is needless (in my opinion), but even more so when it's the result of mostly stupid actions. As my little man will tell you, I do not like stupid. Excessive stupidity even less so. And while I enjoyed the overall plot I did wonder where all the smart people went.

  • Thomas Edmund
    2019-02-01 21:00

    I really wasn't going to go forward with this series. After finding Left Hand a painful and clumsy exercise in poor writing I decided to ditch the series (which is a big thing for me)Unfortunately some well-meaning friends gave me the third book for xmas last year. Well me being me, rather than thanking my friends and returning the book, I loaned The Last Four Things from the library.What struck me first is an apparent change in tone. Maybe I just didn't pick up on it in the last book, but the voice narrating this piece espoused far more sarcastic humor than before. While the change in tone was welcome in a way as it morphed the melodrama of the story into satire, the series is still difficult. The main problem with Last Four Things it the protag Thom Cale, currently back with his Redeemer 'buddies' spends the majority of the book non-plussed about his situation, creating a similar effect in the reader.Only by the last quarter does stuff start happening, and its reasonably exciting stuff, but like many episodes in a series, one finds the author may just be filling time before some decent events because these days your epic fantasy has to be at least seven books to be respectable.Nonetheless Four Things was an improvement on the first book, less cringing prose (less not good mind you) the narration is slightly tighter and the flow of the book is smooth enough to read quickly which is a good thing.

  • James
    2019-02-13 23:07

    This was no where near as the first one in the series. It was... passable. After the first one I felt that there was great character development and a great plot line getting ready to unfold. However, the reality was something else. The plot was... boring. It didn't hold much attention for me and seemed to jump around the place. The characters became annoying and dull, and as the time passed so quickly I just couldn't give a damn about them or what they were up to. In fact the first three quarters of the book I found it hard to resist the impulse to skim ahead - and the parts regarding Kleist I did skip after he moved in with that tribe. It felt very much like an interim book, as if it was filling the void between two great parts of an epic tale. It is this feeling that there is a better part to come, mixed with the knowledge that this story can be fun (as evidenced in The Left Hand of God) that I plan to read the next installment when it is brought out.In fairness this book is readable and not majorly off-putting, but to be honest I felt like I would have been better off reading chapter by chapter bullet point synopsis - so much quicker, and all with the same detail. For those who have read the first book then this is worth a read, but for new readers I suggest reading the first one (duh!) and if you love that then try this. Have fun reading.

  • JJ DeBenedictis
    2019-02-22 22:07

    Like the first book in the trilogy, my rating for this one is more because it's so memorable and well-executed than because I liked it.There is a lot a person *could* like about this book, but you also have to be able to tolerate the very cynical view of humanity it takes as well as horrifyingly-skewed version of Christianity it portrays. It's all really interesting stuff, and I can see some readers loving this and others hating it. I was merely flummoxed by it, but I also haven't been able to stop thinking about it. The writing is strong and clean, although in this book, I found the author lapsed more into "telling" and did less "showing" than in the first book. The main characters are shockingly hard-edged and at the same time incredibly naive and thus they have zero defences when it comes to the perils of love. That was kind of endearing.The book doesn't have a proper resolution, because the trilogy is really one story told in three books rather than three stand-alone stories with an over-arching plot. You'll have to read all three books to get to the story's true resolution.

  • Alča
    2019-02-14 16:05

    Mě se to líbilo mnohem víc než první kniha. Možná je to tím že jak jsou prázdniny a v knihovně nic není a já se nemůžu dokopat ke Kindlu, probírám se samýma plevama tak mi tohle přišlo dost dobré. Já toho hajzlíka Calea prostě žeru a jsem fakt zvědavá jak to s ním dopadne, doufám že se nenechá zabít! Jen by mě zajímalo, taková věcička - jestli si to pan Hoffman dobře spočítal...? V knize se tvrdí, že ta Kleistova kočena je v devátém měsíci, ovšem Arbell je v měsíci osmém a tvrdí že dítě je Caleovo. Tak teda WTF? Kleist Daisy k dítku dopomohl až potom co zdrhl Henrimu a IdrisPukkemu, naproti tomu Cale to musel zvládnout ještě před Kleistem, protože už se pak s Arbell neviděl, takže jaktože už Daisy skoro rodí a Arbell ne?

  • Bart Van Loon
    2019-02-07 16:11

    I was pretty disappointed, really. Two years ago, I found `The Left Hand of God' to be a really wonderful book. I loved the protagonist Cale, and the setting in The Sanctuary. I was looking forward to this sequel that I even temporarily quit another book I'm curently reading to start with it as soon as I got my hands on it. This time, however, I was never really dragged into the story, nor the world in which it takes place. Also the dark and bitter atmosphere I loved so much in the first book seemed absent to me in `The Last Four Things'.Nevertheless, it's a page turner again, and I will definitely read the third and final book, even though I'm not really that curious about the continuation of the story anymore.

  • Ivan Bogdanov
    2019-02-07 18:45

    Последно време на Запад има една тенденция - пусне ли се качествена книга, почват да се пишат едни дълги продължения, сякаш се готвят все ново колело да издават . Тази книга е поредната в този списък. Първата беше сравнително нова и интересна, но във втората част действието се разстла така, че не е ясно как ще се събере.Авторът е доста добре запознат с военната история и продължава да се бъзика с големите битки в Средновековието, макар че обърква тотално епохите - праща спартанци срещу оръдия.Признавам има много добър стил, книгата има доста афоризми, а превода на Любо Николов е брилянтен.Но самата книга стана скучна. Дано в третия том действието се постегне, защото иначе ще е загубена толкова добра идея.

  • Curtis
    2019-02-17 22:52

    I never would have found The Left Hand of God if I hadn't received it in a Goodreads giveaway. The Last Four Things, the second book in the trilogy, picks up right where the first book leaves off and we quickly learn Redeemder Bosco's plans for Thomas Cale - as fanatical and sinister as ever. There is more action in this second book - and occasionally the battle sequences are a bit of a struggle to follow - but there is also a great deal more background about the various groups of people that inhabit this world and the dynamics that are at play across factions. And, just as in the first book, there are some twists at the end that one likely won't expect. I'm definitely excited to get my hands on The Beating of His Wings to see how the story of Thomas Cale ends...

  • Robert
    2019-01-24 18:07

    I was hoping this was going to be an improvement on book one, but the best I can say is that, like the curate's egg, it was OK in parts. My biggest problem was in trying to spot any general direction that the book might be trying to move in, but it seemed to be a series of barely connected episodes, mostly depicting barbaric cruelty. I suspect you have to be not only Roman Catholic to appreciate this, but to have been brought up by Irish trained Christian Brothers. I won't bother to buy the final volume in this series.

  • Eva
    2019-01-27 18:55

    Přežití a sebezáchova. Nebo snad přežití x sebezáchova?Když chce člověk přežít, musí to ve svém důsledku být za každou cenu, i za cenu sebezáchovy své osobnosti? Je to opravdové přežití? Nebo se stačí rozhodnout, že sám sebe nezaprodá, může ho to ale stát život? Když se za těchto podmínek někdo rozhodne, že zvolí život a svolí zaplatit vším, co z toho na konci vzejde? K čemu jej tahle cesta dovede? Když ale není ochota platit, není ani odměna...(view spoiler)["Čtyři poslední věci člověka, nic jiného nás hříšné nečeká." (hide spoiler)]