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The Tournament - Unsigned Copy - Matthew Reilly

The Tournament - Unsigned Copy

Hardcover

Published: 12th November 2013
In Stock. Usually ships in 3-4 business days
RRP $39.99
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Published: 1st November 2013
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RRP $49.95
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Booktopia Comments

This is not the edition signed by Matthew Reilly. If you would like to buy a signed copy - go here.

To download a special FREE prequel to The Tournament - go here.

Book Description

The year is 1546. Europe lives in fear of the powerful Islamic empire to the East. Under its charismatic Sultan, Suleiman the Magnificent, it is an empire on the rise. It has defeated Christian fleets. It has conquered Christian cities. Then the Sultan sends out an invitation to every king in Europe: send forth your champion to compete in a tournament unlike any other.

We follow the English delegation, selected by King Henry VIII himself, to the glittering city of Constantinople, where the most amazing tournament ever staged will take place. But when the stakes are this high, not everyone plays fair, and for our team of plucky English heroes, winning may not be the primary goal.

As barbaric murders occur, a more immediate goal might simply be staying alive.

Read John Purcell's Review

Bestselling author Matthew Reilly is one of Australia's most reliable writers. Every couple of years he delivers his fans quality popular fiction and every couple of years he can be counted on to break Australian sales records. But till now, all of his successes, Ice Station, Seven Ancient Wonders, Temple, The Five Greatest Warriors, Scarecrow, to name just a few, have one thing in common, the breakneck speed of their narrative.

The Tournament is a departure for Reilly, gone is his trademark breakneck speed. Instead we find a narrative with gravitational pull. Enter The Tournament's orbit and you cannot escape, you must read on to the final page.

That said this book still jogs along. You don't get to where Reilly is without learning a trick or two. He has chosen a point in time, 1546. He has given us a narrator, Queen Elizabeth I, no less. He has booked a stage, a chess tournament in Constantinople held by Sulleiman the Magnificent, Sultan of the Ottoman Empire. And hired only the best talent to walk his boards, St Ignatius Loyola, Michelangelo, Ivan the Terrible, and a 13 year old Elizabeth Tudor, who is accompanied by her teacher, Roger Ascham, the real hero of the story, a Renaissance Sherlock Holmes.

Before the first page there is a warning from Matthew Reilly stating that this is most definitely an adult book with adult content. And what I think he means is that there is sex in it. Because sex was the only thing missing from his other books, all which contain violence aplenty. In The Tournament the sex is illustrative, designed to show the decadence of the Sultan's court and we, the readers, are observers only, never participants as is the case with erotic fiction. Any 15 year old with an iPhone has seen much, much worse. And besides, the sex and violence are the carrot which keeps us turning the pages. The Tournament is essentially a didactic tale, with lots of discussions about morality, religion, philosophy, history and politics. Ascham is the future queen's teacher and he is convinced that she must know of the world to rule it well. Matthew Reilly, a great fan of Star Wars, has created a pair to rival, Obe Wan and Luke Skywalker.

This is a book which will entertain thousands of Australian readers this summer holidays. It is not too heavy, not too light, just right.

About the Author

Matthew Reilly wrote his first book, Contest, in 1994 whilst attending the University of New South Wales. It was rejected by every major publishing company This caused Reilly to self-publish 1,000 copies using money borrowed from his family. Reilly went to a bookstore in Sydney and asked if he could place the copies on one of their book shelves. They accepted the offer . Very shortly after, the books had sold out and the owner of the bookstore called Reilly to order more books. One copy was read by Pan Macmillan, who immediately signed Reilly up to write Ice Station, which became an international bestseller. Since then, he has been published in over fifteen countries, including Norway, Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, The Netherlands, South Africa, Japan and China.

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
The Tournament - Unsigned Copy
 
4.1

(based on 15 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (9)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

80%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to read (11)
  • Engaging characters (7)
  • Page-turner (7)
  • Well written (7)
  • Informative (5)

Cons

  • Not what I expected (4)

Best Uses

  • Gift (8)
  • Older readers (8)
  • Travel reading (4)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Bookworm (6), Casual reader (5), Everyday reader (4)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Complex, unpredictable and sleazy

As a teenager, my brother hated To Kill A Mockingbird but adored Matthew Reilly novels. This is interesting, because when you strip away the hovering cars, the doomsday devices and the maghooks,...Read complete review

As a teenager, my brother hated To Kill A Mockingbird but adored Matthew Reilly novels. This is interesting, because when you strip away the hovering cars, the doomsday devices and the maghooks, all Reilly's books are a version of Harper Lee's classic tale: one wise, kind man, surrounded by savagery and corruption, fights to protect the innocent.

His new hero, Roger Ascham, resembles Atticus Finch even more than usual. Ascham is a gentle, intelligent schoolmaster who leads Scout – I mean, teenage future-queen Elizabeth the First – to a chess tournament in the Ottoman Empire. When the young princess and her teacher stumble across a murder, they find themselves hunting a serial killer in the Sultan's palace. Or is it something even more sinister?

It's a complex, unpredictable plot, and it moves along at an electrifying pace, driven by many colourful characters (including some real historical figures such as Ivan the Terrible and Michelangelo). The only pauses are thoughtful ones – when Elizabeth reflects on the carnal adventures of her friend Elsie, or when she and Ascham compare behanding thieves in Turkey to hanging them in England. The Tournament doesn't shy away from scenes and ideas which may offend, be they cultural, sexual or visceral. (The book is both violent and sexy, but sensibly, never both at the same time.)

The most addictive thing about Reilly's writing has always been the thoroughness of his research, which often leaves the reader wondering how much of his tale is true. Sure, the Sultan's palace in Constantinople was probably a real place, but how about the incredible menagerie within it? Queen Elizabeth the First and her father were real people, but how about Roger Ascham? What about the chess master Gilbert Giles? The quotes from Elizabeth which begin each chapter – did she really say those things, or are they a product of Reilly's imagination?

Ultimately, it doesn't matter. The fact and the fiction blend together so seamlessly that the setting comes to life, giving the reader a tactile sense of the luxurious palace, the sleazy brothels and the bustling bazaars of Constantinople in 1547.

It may seem strange to call a number one bestselling author "underrated", but Reilly's earnest, no-frills prose often leads critics to dismiss him as nothing more than a literary Michael Bay. His exhaustive research, tightrope storylines and his delightful tendency to experiment are regularly overlooked.

I have a feeling that this is about to change. Reilly may be best known for the bullets, bombs and outlandish technologies which populate his books, but with The Tournament, he has proven that these are only window dressing. He can tell a gripping tale with nothing more than chess pieces and the occasional flaying. That makes him indisputably a master of his craft.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Definitely pulp fiction

Delivered efficiently and quickly. Beautifully printed and presented with a well-designed cover. Apart from the historical name-dropping there is little else to recommend this book. It has too many of the elements of...Read complete review

Delivered efficiently and quickly. Beautifully printed and presented with a well-designed cover. Apart from the historical name-dropping there is little else to recommend this book. It has too many of the elements of cheap pulp fiction: exotic far off places; larger than life characters; the rich and famous; sensationalism; sex and violence. There's obviously money to be made writing such low brow stuff.

Reviewed by 15 customers

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4.0

Surprising

By Baguette

from Sydney

About Me Everyday Reader

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Informative
  • Page-Turner
  • Well Written

Cons

  • Not What I Expected

Best Uses

  • Older Readers
  • Travel Reading

Comments about The Tournament - Unsigned Copy:

This was a real change from this author, and a little raunchy and explicit, which was a surprise, considering his previous efforts. It was definitely a history lesson wrapped in a novel, but I cannot recommend it to others because of the explicit nature of some of the scenes.

Comment on this review

 
4.0

A good read!

By Gaye Faye

from northern territory

About Me Bookworm

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy To Read
  • Engaging characters
  • Page-Turner
  • Well Written

Cons

  • No Cons Forme
  • No Cons For Me

Best Uses

  • Gift
  • Older Readers

Comments about The Tournament - Unsigned Copy:

A good read! Unpredictable and historically interesting!

Comment on this review

 
4.0

dont expect scarecrow to jump out

By fan

from adeladie, sa

About Me Bookworm

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Engaging characters

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Gift

    Comments about The Tournament - Unsigned Copy:

    a wonderful different style for Matthew Reilly, but still worth a read!

    Comment on this review

     
    4.0

    A great read, different from other works

    By amymelissa

    from Adelaide, SA

    About Me Bookworm

    Pros

    • Easy To Read
    • Well Written

    Cons

      Best Uses

        Comments about The Tournament - Unsigned Copy:

        A departure from the usual modern action thrillers, however it is a very interesting read. Not for younger readers due to adult themes.

        Comment on this review

         
        5.0

        A very good read.

        By Roberto

        from Sydney

        About Me Everyday Reader

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy To Read
        • Well Written

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Older Readers

          Comments about The Tournament - Unsigned Copy:

          Very well written, and typical of the great stories by Matthew Reilly

          Comment on this review

           
          4.0

          well wriiten and a depature from usual

          By antonellie

          from brisbane

          About Me Casual Reader

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Dramatic
          • Easy To Read
          • Informative
          • Well Written

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • All

            Comments about The Tournament - Unsigned Copy:

            good service delivery and packaging excellent

            Comment on this review

             
            3.0

            Very different writing style

            By Duchess of Rye

            from Rye, Melbourne

            About Me Everyday Reader

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Easy To Read

            Cons

            • Disappointing

            Best Uses

            • Older Readers

            Comments about The Tournament - Unsigned Copy:

            Not what I expected. A very different novel from Reilly, I read it but didn't enjoy it as much as his others.

            Comment on this review

             
            4.0

            A different version of Matthew Reilly,

            By Granny Smith

            from Perth

            About Me Bookworm

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Informative

            Cons

            • More Breathing Space
            • Not What I Expected

            Best Uses

            • Reference

            Comments about The Tournament - Unsigned Copy:

            I'm happy with the service.

            Comment on this review

             
            5.0

            Excellent book as always by this author

            By crossann

            from Brisbane

            About Me Everyday Reader

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • A Grand Adventure
            • Deserves Multiple Readings
            • Easy To Read
            • Engaging characters
            • Informative
            • Page-Turner
            • Well Written

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Gift
              • Older Readers

              Comments about The Tournament - Unsigned Copy:

              An excellent book, you can't put it down once you start. Love everything that Matthew Reilly writes.

              Comment on this review

              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              4.0

              Another excellent plot

              By Jilly

              from Country Victoria, Australia

              About Me Casual Reader

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Deserves Multiple Readings
              • Easy To Read
              • Engaging characters

              Cons

              • Slow To Draw Me In

              Best Uses

              • Gift
              • Older Readers
              • Travel Reading

              Comments about The Tournament - Unsigned Copy:

              Slower than his previous books to get me hooked, they normally get me in from page one.
              After the first few chapters couldn't put it down.

              Comment on this review

              Displaying reviews 1-10

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              ISBN: 9781742612393
              ISBN-10: 1742612393
              Audience: General
              Format: Hardcover
              Language: English
              Number Of Pages: 432
              Published: 12th November 2013
              Dimensions (cm): 24.3 x 15.9  x 3.9
              Weight (kg): 0.69