The Seven Cities Rebellion is over, Sha'ik is dead, but a last rebel force remains, holed up in the city of Y'Ghatan under the fanatical command of Leoman of the Flails. The prospect of laying siege to this ancient fortress makes the battle-weary Malaz 14th Army uneasy - for it was here that the Empire's greatest champion Dassem Ultor was slain and a tide of Malazan blood spilled...But agents of a far greater conflict have made their opening moves. The Crippled God has been granted a place in the pantheon, a schism threatens, sides must be chosen but whatever each god decides, the rules have changed - and the first blood spilled will be in the mortal world: a world in which a host of characters, familiar and new, search for a fate that they might fashion by their own will. If only the gods would leave them alone. But gods are disinclined to be kind. There shall be war, war in the heavens. And the prize? Nothing less than existence itself...