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Summary

The triumphant conclusion to the magnificent Liveship Traders series.

The dragon Tintaglia has been released from her wizardwood coffin, only to find that the glories of her kingdom have passed into ancient memory.

Meanwhile, Malta Vestrit navigates the acid flow of the Rain Wild River in a decomposing boat, accompanied by the Satrap Cosgo and his Companion Kekki.

Against hope, a ship appears in the alien waters, but does it mean rescue, or a further nightmare, for Malta? In ruined Bingtown, the citizens are at war, against the Chalcedean mercenaries besieging the harbour, and also among themselves. If the city is to survive, Ronica Vestrit must unite all its peoples - both Trader and Tattooed - and liberate the city once and for all; but Companion Serilla has a different agenda, and is seeking to establish her own power base. Althea and Brashen are finally at sea together, sailing the liveship Paragon into pirate waters in a last-ditch effort to rescue the Vestrit family liveship, Vivacia, stolen by the Pirate king, Kennit; but there is mutiny brewing in their rag-tag crew; and in the mind of the mad ship itself....

Wintrow has liberated She Who Remembers and she can at last fulfil her ancient purpose, but in doing so he has been terribly injured. If Wintrow dies, Kennit fears that Vivacia will lose her fragile sanity: a loss that will also threaten his dreams of power and glory. So he strikes a deal with the ship. And soon the waters around the Vivacia are seething with giant serpents, following the liveship as it sails to its destiny.

Majestic and sweeping, Ship of Destiny concludes the tale of the Vestrit family and their part in the history of The Liveship Traders with a soaring and triumphant finale to this unique series of epic fantasy.

©2012 Robin Hobb (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic reviews

"A truly extraordinary saga… the characterizations are consistently superb, and [Hobb] animates everything with love for and knowledge of the sea. If Patrick O’Brian were to turn to writing high fantasy, he might produce something like this.” ( Booklist)
“A wonderful book, by a writer at the height of her abilities” (J. V. Jones)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

brilliant!

The story is as compelling as I remember but I think the narrating of it could have been a great deal better. Spoilt it a bit for me

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Stunning conclusion to a fabulous series!

This intricately woven tale builds slowly to its conclusion in this third instalment. Loose ends start to knit together in a spellbinding finale. Robin Hobb has created one of those worlds that while entirely alien seems somehow right and inevitable as though she has uncovered an idea that existed all along. Excellent narration and a top quality story!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

exceptional performance and a finale far superior

exceptional performance and a finale far superior to the first two books. can't wait to listen to the rest of the series.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

would've been great without the weak woman stuff.

I was mostly enjoying this although am a bit depressed by long war scenes in so many fantasy novels. I got really angry though at yet another writer advocating rape by including an appalling scene. Then the appalling disbelief of her nearest and dearest. So unnecessary in a good book.

This type of scene has occurred in the last 4 books I've read. I am going to have to find a genre that promotes a healthy equality and respect. You can forget romances that's boring.

Come on fantasy writers - great worlds and imagination do not have to include the cringworthy side of life. Move on from that...

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Engrossing throughout

The three books collectively titled The Liveship Trader's are my favourite by Robin Hobb. They make engrossing reading throughout and are not to be missed, a brilliant satisfying read. The narrator handles the myriad of characters with great skill.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good book but the romance was a struggle.

Almost not finished the book because of the romance contained in this book, it is only after two months I managed to go through the passage I didn't like. A shame for such a good trilogy.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

ship of Destiny

I have loved all three books in the series and sad to have finished them .

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Last of the trilogy.

First half was boring and a struggle to stay interested but the end was immense. Worth sticking out.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

End of the saga

I'm afraid that I didn't enjoy this nearly as much as the other books to date. It's unfortunate that most of this book is doom and gloom. The narrator did a fantastic job as always, but the story was a real long hard slog. Dragons – doom and gloom. Live ships, traders, all the main characters, doom and gloom. Obviously towards the end all the outstanding issues were resolved and things picked up a great deal, but I just didn't find it particularly enjoyable, which was a shame as I had loved the first two books.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Master piece

What a fantastic story. Read with passion and theatricality. Robin Hobb is the queen of her genre and I wish I could give her and her books more than five stars

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  • Jaime
  • 13-04-17

el mejor de la trilogía, y del género

excelente historia, muy sólida narración y con un ritmo casi perfecto. oírlo antes de la trilogía de The Twany Man es aun mejor.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Katrina
  • 20-01-15

Narrator makes all the difference

Now this is purely a personal view, and many people may have a totally different perception, but for me, Anne's voice nearly prevented me from listening to the trilogy. The first 10 minutes of book 1 and I was nearly up the wall with the swishy voice, just listen to a sample and you will see what I mean.

By the second book I found I didn't notice it most of the time, and by the third book I played a sample for my daughter (in her late 20's) and she exclaimed in dismay that she could never listen this series.

OK, just MHO. The books themselves are so incredibly brilliant that the narrator was worth putting up with.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jim Sheils
  • 19-07-14

A thrilling conclusion

What did you like best about this story?

It was wonderful to see how much the characters have grown

Which character – as performed by Anne Flosnik – was your favorite?

The live ships and the serpents were my favourites

Any additional comments?

This is one of the best fantasy epics ever!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Cherie
  • 04-02-13

Excellent couldn't stop listening

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would recommend Robin Hobb stories to everyone. It puts you in another world.

What did you like best about this story?

The entire series.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Both