The Fatal Tree Bright Empires #5 PDF/EPUB ä The Fatal


The Fatal Tree Bright Empires #5 Kit stared at his fellow uestors Is this it the End of EverythingIt started with small seemingly insignificant wrinkles in time A busy bridge suddenly disappears spilling cars into the sea A beast from another realm roams modern streets Napoleon's army appears in 1930s Damascus ready for battle But that's only the beginning as entire realities collide and collapseThe uestors are spread throughout the universe Mina is stuck on a plain of solid ice her only companion an angry cave lion Tony and Gianni are monitoring the cataclysmic reversal of the cosmic expansion but coming up short on answers And Burleigh is languishing in a dreary underground dungeon his only hope of survival the very man he tried to murderKit and Cass are back in the Stone Age trying to reach the Spirit Well But an enormous yew tree has grown over the portal effectively cutting off any chance of return Unless someone can find a solution and fast all Creation will be destroyed in the universal apocalypse known as The End of EverythingIn this final volume of the fantastic Bright Empires series Stephen R Lawhead brings this multi stranded tale to a stunning and immensely satisfying conclusion

  • Hardcover
  • 356 pages
  • The Fatal Tree Bright Empires #5
  • Stephen R. Lawhead
  • English
  • 23 January 2016
  • 9781595548085

About the Author: Stephen R. Lawhead

was born in 1950 in Nebraska in the USA Most of his early life was spent in America where he earned a university degree in Fine Arts and attended theological college for two years His first professional writing was done at Campus Life magazine in Chicago where he was an editor and staff writer During his five years at Campus Life he wrote hundreds of articles and several non fiction booksAfter a brief foray into the music business—as president of his own record company—he began full time freelance writing in 1981 He moved to England in order to research Celtic legend and history His first novel In the Hall of the Dragon King became the first in a series of three books The Dragon King Trilogy and was followed by the two volume Empyrion saga Dream Thief and then the Pendragon Cycle now in five volumes Taliesin Merlin Arthur Pendragon and Grail This was followed by the award winning Song of Albion series which consists of The Paradise War The Silver Hand and The Endless KnotHe has written nine children's books many of them originally offered to his two sons Drake and Ross He is married to



10 thoughts on “The Fatal Tree Bright Empires #5

  1. Werner Werner says:

    This fifth and final volume of the Bright Empires series is much of a piece with the four volumes that went before in terms of content style and uality Reader's reactions to the first four would probably be predictive of their reaction to this one And the first four should definitely be read in order before tackling this one As readers of the Shadow Lamp already know and as the cover copy which also serves as the Goodreads description states our major characters are now caught up in the climactic effort to respond to and hopefully prevent the End of Everything a reversal of the universemultiverse's expansion in a rapid contraction that will annihilate everything that existsBoth the characteristic strengths and weaknesses of the series continue to be in evidence For perhaps the first two thirds of the book the plot actually seemed to me to be somewhat aimless than in the preceding books with our uestors seeming to act in a relatively random fashion in the face of the emergency On the plus side Lawhead delivers a couple of surprises in his plotting that I did not see coming; but character development continues to be believable Multiple plot strands are juggled probably about as well as they can be with so many And the author creates an impressive vision of the cosmic scope of a meaningful multiverse suffused with an explicitly theistic perspective and expressed in majestic and beautiful prose which didn't fail to impress this reader We even have some clean romance presented tastefully and intelligently as is Lawhead's wontA major point that for me cost this volume and the series in general stars is the heavy reliance on uantum physics which I don't fully understand and am not unreservedly convinced is valid anyway and which tends to be only vaguely explained here Also the internal logic of the premise seems weak to me It isn't a spoiler since the preceding books state it to mention that the contraction of space time is happening because Arthur Flinders Petrie misused the Spirit Well to restore the dead Xian Li to life But that raises other uestions that don't get answers How does the Spirit Well do this in the first place? What is its relation to the multiverse? If it can be misused in this fashion and can thus threaten the End of Everything why wouldn't the Creator whom Lawhead posits take measures to prevent this in the first place? Why would one action that wasn't meant to be cause the contraction of the universe? How do we know what's meant to be in this sense? Why does the contraction wait three generations to start happening? Inuiring minds want to knowRelated to this the logic behind the ending is unsatisfactory IMO view spoilerIf our uestors travel back in time to stop an action in the past wouldn't that change the entire fabric of subseuent space time and undo everything that subseuently happened as a result? Wouldn't the contraction never have begun happening rather than suddenly being reversed? Wouldn't Xian Li's child and later descendants then never have existed? What guarantee would Burleigh have that stepping into the Spirit Well would allow him to change the past the way he wanted? And if his doing so would have made the contraction worse why does Kit and Co changing the past the way they want to make the contraction stop instead? hide spoiler

  2. Deborah O& Deborah O& says:

    First posted hereIn the immortal words of Bilbo Baggins at least in a certain film “I’ve put this off for far too long”I was waiting for the right words but I’ve realized that there’s simply no way to do justice to this book in a review and so instead of waiting for a time that will never come I’m simply going to say something about it even if it’s not enough You see the Bright Empire series of which The Fatal Tree is the fifth and final book meant so much to me that I can’t uite put it into words I enjoyed it loved it and it had a profound influence and effect on me The series worked its way into a deep part of me that makes it hard to get at to explain I’m not sure if you’ve had this experience but sometimes you read something that becomes a part of you It changes you And so you can’t really talk about it—not really not in a way that could explain to anyone why it happened to reach you at that soul level because if it didn’t do the same for them then they just won’t understand And that’s all right because every book affects people differently if at all It just makes it difficult to explainSo it’s seems silly to attempt it and I won’t try but I will say that this series is a part of me like several other book milestones along the way through my younger life—I won’t go through those here It’s enough a part of me that I don’t really think about it but it is and it’s thereSo here are a few things about the series that made it something special at least for this literary travelerFor one thing there’s Mina She was the first female role model I’d met in a book since I was very young I want to be her Heroines never interest me in fiction much; I don’t know why but I’m usually drawn to the heroes So Mina was something new and different She showed me it was possible to do oh so many things She’s the bravest character I’ve ever read about but she started as a stressed tired young woman from our modern days Literally plucked out of her life and thrust into another one she refuses to give in and transforms her situation into something incredible She is clever and heroic and rather brave than I think I’d ever be but she is so incredibly loving and steady too and she shines She makes a way in the world and is loyal to her friends and capable and an entrepreneur ready to try new things whether in a bakery or fearlessly treading the roads between worlds but she’s still human and shows that it’s okay to wish you could be home taking a hot shower to avoid the world at times And I mean who wouldn’t want to go visit her and Etzel’s joint Kaffeehaus in 1600s Prague? It’s the most amazing place I think what I’m trying to say is that I didn’t really have role models in fiction and that we need those I’ve had plenty of fictional heroes and I needed those too and I had Eilonwy and Princess Irene and Eowyn and others but I hadn’t met a modern heroine I could look up to and I think in a rush to write “realistic” characters read dull and flawed or fake and artificially “strong” people just don’t write truly heroic characters any Not the ones who can actually be looked up to and show a blueprint of what might be and meet me where I am and inspire me and show me that I can be something and do things I won’t ramble on about her than that but Mina is one of the best things that ever happened to meThe series also firmly embedded into my mind that whole “there are no coincidences” thing which as much as I always knew in theory I didn’t really believe if you know what I mean until reading this fascinating series If there’s one thing I took away from these books it was that and I adore itThen there’s how I’ll run across things in life or in other literature or in a song or history and I’ll see it echoing back to this series—whether it’s a name or a place or something else—and I’ll go “Aha It’s like Bright Empires” and I’ll do a little dance of intrigued joy For example I stumbled across a translation of a Welsh song called Adra Home by Gwyneth Glyn and it so strongly fit this series I thought “What a coincidence Oh that can’t be right ” ; Aside from simply being great fun to find things in life that remind me of a beloved series it opened up a whole new world to me—and how could it not with such a broad canvas of times places people and thoughts painted together with such intricacy and skill?And also with beloved characters and humor and enjoyment because that’s the important bit that makes the rest stick in your mind Because there’s the thing you can have the most interesting or enlightening book in the world but if it’s not fun it’s not going to stick with you—or with me at any rate And you can have an enjoyable story but how much enjoyable is it if amidst the fun it stretches your mind far afield and shows you a whole new world and makes you think? I love how this series did all of those things for me and all in a mind bending genre defying completely new sort of wayBut aren’t you going to talk about this book not just the series then? you ask Oh very well I see the series as a whole and so I don’t have terribly much to say specifically about the final book other than as the end of a saga Especially not without massive spoilers which nobody wants because you must discover them on your own when you read the books; and you ARE GOING TO right? stern but loving look But there are a few things so I’ll mention themI don’t know how I feel about a few things that happened and at least at one point I wished that some of the characters could have come in at the end with the others and they didn’t—but then I realized that they were perfect where they are Several pairs of people are THE MOST ADORABLE THING I’m sorry I’m a romantic XDFamiliar places like Black Mixen Tump swirl back into the story and continue to be fascinating Desert sand in Egypt to frozen ice and the Stone Age with Prague and Constantinople and all the rest in between I love the richness of all the different countries and times we get to visit in this series and how vivid they are even if some can get downright frightening and especially the good hearts of many of the people we meet Everything’s so genuine laced with a thread of nobleness and lightI still adore all of the characters fiercely Mina Kit Etzel Cass Giles Tony Haven Gianni the members of the Zetetic Society and all the rest They’re my friends now ^^ I was so delighted to get to finally complete their story in this book and I absolutely love how all of their tales intertwine and fit into the book so neatly but with threads trailing afterward to the future And I love all of their interactions SO MUCH They make the book DEven the villains are interesting and far from straightforward Burleigh’s plotline is one of the two most skillful ones of its kind I’ve read in my lifeAnd of course there’s a time related thing or two that finally happen in this book which I’ve been waiting for since the first one One in particular made me SO HAPPY Looking at you chapter 11 Speaking of timey wimey things that sort of thing always makes my head spin in a good way and I think I filled a couple of pieces of paper with diagrams of different people’s timelines and where and when they crossed and it was still dreadfully confusing and I love it so much XD Someday I’m going to carve out the time to read the whole series again and I’m looking forward to that with relish And maybe then I’ll finally fully understand the ending which tied my mind in knots DThen there’s that whole having to save the world thing what with the whole universe about to end and everything which is as serious as it sounds and just as exciting—and there may or may not be some death in there and I’m not saying I totally understood how everything turned out I like a good goes slightly over my head and reuires a rereading ending—just look at Diana Wynne Jones especially with science y things going over my head but everything came together from the previous books and on the whole I was terribly pleased with how The Fatal Tree wrapped up the series I’m also so glad we got a what happens next bit at the end too collapsesIt was an experience and one it’s taken me nearly two years to get around to finally externalizing and typing up in the form of a “review” or shall we call it an essay? but I can safely say that the Bright Empires is one of the most delightful series I’ve had the pleasure of reading Even if only as an enjoyable adventure I recommend them highly to anyone who cares to try their luck Or since there is no such thing as coincidence let’s say that luck is the wrong word and leave it at that ;I’m deeply indebted to Mr Lawhead for penning such a—well brilliant is the only word for it in so many ways—series and I look forward to delving into of his books very soonAlso THE SPOON O WHAT DOES IT MEAN I HAVE SO MANY UESTIONS

  3. Madeline Rose Madeline Rose says:

    Initial Response HOW DO I FIND WORDS HELP It started with small seemingly insignificant wrinkles in time A busy bridge suddenly disappears spilling cars into the sea A beast from another realm roams modern streets Napoleon's army appears in 1930s Damascus ready for battle But that's only the beginning as entire realities collide and collapseThe uestors are spread throughout the universe Mina is stuck on a plain of solid ice her only companion an angry cave lion Tony and Gianni are monitoring the cataclysmic reversal of the cosmic expansion but coming up short on answers And Burleigh is languishing in a dreary underground dungeon his only hope of survival the very man he tried to murderKit and Cass are back in the Stone Age trying to reach the Spirit Well But an enormous yew tree has grown over the portal effectively cutting off any chance of return Unless someone can find a solution and fast all Creation will be destroyed in the universal apocalypse known as The End of Everything High Lights THE WHOLE THING Okay specifically THE CHARACTERS Kit is still great Mina is still plain AWESOME and Cass is so sweet I really enjoyed Tony's character though every time I pictured him all that came to mind was Tony STARK XD It was amusing to say the least The description and imagery as always TRANSPORTS me into the story I feel like I'm watching a movie it's so vivid and REAL The stakes just about killed me view spoiler I'm like still kinda mad at Arthur for what he didLike REALLY? You're going to destroy the whole universe to save your wife I mean like that's totally sweet and romantic in a way but c'mon hide spoiler

  4. Kristjan Kristjan says:

    The bar was raised a little bit by the back cover promising an immensely satisfying conclusion to the Bright Empires series Substitute somewhat for immensely and that's much closer to the truth for meThe author did bring the overall story to a conclusion and that is a positive after a lot of meandering through the ages A major change in the person of one of the major characters is plausible to me perhaps because it is nuanced I did enjoy reading this series overallAnd now to the negatives This last book in the series was probably the most difficult to read Heavy on verbose descriptions of surroundings and light on conversations and action it made it hard to keep the attention on the story As some might say it was easy to put down at any point It was also rather disappointing that the whole paradigm for the story changed drastically in this final book And the author's essay after the epilogue just feels like the author sticking his tongue out at the reader I think I would have felt better about the book without it To explain what happened to a few supporting characters and not the main characters is bad enough Then to hide behind the claim that this is all real and the author just doesn't know what happened to them sounds rather idiotic Or perhaps the author just can't be bothered to make something up Of course that is the author's prerogative as it is my prerogative not to read anything by this author again And so I believe it shall be

  5. Stargazer R. L. Stargazer R. L. says:

    I have a new top favorite series In other news a re read of all five books is called for ASAPPS Please go grab Book 1 THE SKIN MAP at your local library bookstore or online someplace Because these books are epic on so many levels

  6. Andrew Leon Andrew Leon says:

    As I think I've mentioned before Stephen Lawhead is one of my favorite living authors He's one of the few authors whose books I will just pick up automatically when they're released The problem with Lawhead though is that he freuesntly has a problem with endings especially endings of series The Fatal Tree proves to be one of those ending failures and it's unfortunate that such a strong story had to end with a face plantThe first problem with the book is as it turns out the conflict is cosmic in nature As revealed at the end of the previous book The Shadow Lamp the end of the universe is coming As I mentioned in my review of The Shadow Lamp this is an issue because it changes the focus of the series We believe during the first three books and most of the way through the fourth that conflict is with Burleigh but suddenly no although Burleigh is a bad guy he is not the bad guy He is not the antagonistIn fact there is no real antagonist not at that point just an event that previously happened that now needs to be prevented Remember the part in one of my previous reviews where I said this isn't a time travel story? Well it's still not but they still have to figure out a way to prevent something from happening that already happened Except they don't really know thatActually the major issue with this book is that the catastrophic event that was only discovered as a possibility at the end of book four is just suddenly happening It's like if you were making tea You put your water in your tea kettle you turn on the burner on the stove you set the kettle on the burner You expect to need to have to wait for the water to heat up before you can make your tea right? But not in this book Instead as soon as you set the kettle down not only does the water start to boil it explodes into steam The sudden shift from trying to find the skin map to the universe could be in danger to THE UNIVERSE IS IMPLODING RIGHT NOW was unenjoyable to say the leastAnd then what do you do about the universe imploding? Absolutely nothing that's what It's kind of like standing in front of a tsunami and trying to stop it by holding up your hands But Kit and his gang because Kit has somehow become the leader decide they're going to stop it So they spend a lot of time talking about it and doing not much and never figure anything outThe other issue from a plot stand point is the tree The fatal tree The fatal tree that really has nothing to do with anything It's just there There's a whole book basically devoted to this tree and it doesn't really mean anything or have to do with anything That was annoyingThen there's BurleighSo look Lawhead writes Christian themed books I get that As a Christian I appreciate his general subtle application of Christianity into his stories But not this time Because Burleigh as it turns out isn't really our bad guy he needs to have a conversion experience which would be fine except Except that Lawhead spends chapters and chapters dealing with Burleigh and his descent into self loathing so that he can finally come to understand that he's powerless on his own and does yes need God This is all handled like someone with an addiction needing to hit bottom to know that he needs help rather than someone coming to understand that it's grace that is needed Also it goes on way too long In detail It's tiringBasically I was very dissatisfied with the book and how it ended the series Too many things happen for no real reason other than that the author needed them to happen so he made them happen There's no explanation or rational or anything I'm sorry but you don't write a whole book about a tree that just happened to be there and has no other purpose than that it happened to be there Also you don't have the heroes essentially save the universe on accident even if that's what they wanted to do I can't say the series overall was a waste of time because books two three and four were really very good but I might have been satisfied if I had never read this one and just wondered what happened

  7. Tracey Dyck Tracey Dyck says:

    So much rides on the conclusion of a series for the characters yes but also for the reader Expectations and suspense have been built up for hundreds of pages and we wonder how it all will end The Fatal Tree endeddifferently than I expected but it was still really really good I can say very little without plunging straight into spoiler territory but suffice it to say thata I love the crew especially Kit Cass Mina Etzel dear dear Etzel and Giannib I am endlessly fascinated by this multiverse of ley lines and by the topics this series has examined such as time the humongous effect everything and everybody has on everything and everybody else redemption human will and WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THE UNIVERSE STARTS TO SHRINKc That cover pets lovinglyIf you want a wide sprawling adventure through time; if you want to fall in love with a bunch of wonderful characters; or if you want to contemplate history and time and how we're all connected READ BRIGHT EMPIRES

  8. Ian Carmichael Ian Carmichael says:

    Disappointing from a writer of uality The structure seemed stilted characters largely uninteresting plot and devices were imprecise mumbo jumbo That's what I wrote for #1 of the series I kept going until I finished I don't have the level of OCD reuired to comment on #2 #3 and #4 And I shouldn't have kept going through #5Unfortunately I did It was almost a Mandrake gestures hypnotically resolution to the story Brief vague and unsatsifying In 5 volumes 1500 pages I'd have thought a satisfying denouement could be made But the story petered out unclearly at the end indeed so unclearly that Lawhead himself wrote a 'what happened next' chapter and then a concluding essay Amongst the various things which set my teeth on edge the most annoying to me was the author simply dumping in stuff which came from his own recent reading or viewing one of the characters is Benedict Cumberbatch yes right Another one is Thomas Young as Lawhead refers to him often The Last Man who Knew Everything which is the title of a very recent biography of the man And Thomas Young is a real person uite a character indeed but he doesn't achieve much in the progress of the plot save to be announced most times as The Last Man who Knew Everything Personally I don't like real people to figure as apparently important people in fiction I don't even like other fiction character to arrive on the set of a different author So I couldn't really engage Farmer's Riverworld series

  9. Bernie Anderson Bernie Anderson says:

    Well like most Lawhead series this was a fun romp I loved the characters The story was well plotted well researched and well written And I recommend any Lawhead fan to read this seriesHowever this is not my favorite of Lawhead’s work There’s a little X position in this series than what I think is necessary It seems to have elongated it somehow Also while I understand that Thomas Nelson is a Christian publishing house and I also am of the Christian faith I did feel that there was a little bit too much of a stretch with religious themessymbolism I have no problem with this However it seemed a bit of a reach at times I appreciate the way that Lawhead makes his religious themes much subversive and subtle in his other works in my opinion that makes it even powerfulThere are some plot holes related to some of the uantum physics stuff The ending leaves unaccounted for than I would have liked but that’s the choice of the storyteller and I respect that If you’re a Lawhead fan read all five of these books They’re a lot of fun If you’ve never read any of Lawhead’s work before I recommend starting somewhere else My favorite by him is Byzantium I highly recommend this as a Lawhead primer He’s a great writer All in all this was an entertaining story about people I cared about

  10. Christa Kinde Christa Kinde says:

    Culmination In this final installment of the Bright Empires series I especially appreciated Lawhead's references and parallels to famous moments and teachings in the Bible While this series isn't overtly Christian the underpinnings of truth ring through the finale A satisfying conclusion to a complex tale I look forward to reading of Lawhead's work

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