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Paths of Darkness (Forgotten Realms) Hardcover – Box set, 2 Jul 2005

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 1056 pages
  • Publisher: Wizards of the Coast; Collectors ed edition (2 July 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786931558
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786931552
  • Product Dimensions: 23.7 x 16.2 x 6.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,014,556 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By "rawebb8" on 8 April 2004
Format: Hardcover
I have been glued to these Icewind Dale adventures since being introduced to them at Christmas time,(Box sets make great Christmas presents don’t you think!) I haven’t been able to put them down, and this new hardback book did not disappoint. It follows on from the Legacy of the Drow series, and is just as well written. I feel the strongest thing about this series is how much more in depth I feel I know the characters, ALL the characters, I feel I know these characters on a personal basis, that I have come to love and understand these characters through this series of books. I highly recommend R.A.Salvatore books to anyone, to readers new to the fantasy genre, or established fantasy fans. You will not be disappointed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kaps on 17 Jan 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the next book (chronologically with Drizzt as the main character) after 'Legacy of the Drow'. As usual some fast paced action and adventure with lots of ogres, half-ogres, pirates, drow, elves, gnomes, dwarves, thieves, wizards, noble men, bad men and the like! As with the previous books it is useful to have read the books chronologically to fully understand events in the present time period in this book and how they connect with past events (in the previous books).

Drizzt & Jarlaxle are still prominent in this book with the assassin Artemis Entreri featuring quite a lot in it as well. We are also introduced to a host of new characters along with some old ones, and Salvatore sometimes seems to be 'branching out' with more emphasis on the new characters and their antics than simply the exploits of Drizzt and his friends - building and expanding his 'world' so to say (feeling a bit 'Tolkien-ish' as with Lord of the Rings).

Good fast-paced action adventure book which Salvatore fans will love - all-be-it I think the ending was a bit too abrupt. Here it could have done with a bit more narrative and 'played out' the story more instead of having such a quick and all-to-simple ending...but still very entertaining! I thoroughly enjoyed it! Time to move onto the Sellswords Trilogy....!
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Format: Paperback
I'm fairly new to the Salvatore books, (and Forgotten Realms in general) but am quickly becoming converted to these books. The action is non-stop and the characters are relatable. I've read Icewind Dale Trilogy and the Legacy of the Drow series besides this. If you are a Salvatore fan and haven't read this, you must. Salvatore tells a very fun story in these books.
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful By alex james on 12 July 2004
Format: Hardcover
You get the feeling having read these books that Salvatore is bored with Drizzt. He features very little compared to previous books and this may disappoint a little but other characters are developed quite well. There are some totally unbelievable characters (even for a fantasy setting) but it is worth persevering as the quality goes back up in the next trilogy. Drizzt's moralising may patronize and seem sanctamonious but it keeps him in the readers' minds. Notice in Sea of Swords how they evict and terrorize a goblin clan in the mountains on Drizzt's whim - goblins have children too you know Bob!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 47 reviews
52 of 59 people found the following review helpful
A Great item for collection... 28 Feb 2004
By B. Andico - Published on
Format: Hardcover
The Paths of Darkness Collectors' Edition is a very good deal to all avid readers who want to have all the enchilada in one. I for one, waited for this collected edition before I read it rather than read the individual books as they got released.
While it is nice reading, and it did deliver to the standards as R.A. Salvatore can give, it must not be compared to its predecesors, The Dark Elf and Icewind Dale Trilogies, or suffer a less than generous review.
It has the usual elements in Salvatore's previous books: the detailed action sequences, the way the villains are introduced (usually at the epilogues or the first chapters), and the believably slow and gradual development of each characters and how they relate to each other. Its selling point is probably the reintroduction of Drizzt's archenemy, Entreri, with a twist. And a focus on the Drow mercenary chief, Jarlaxle, seems to give promise to the excitement of this epic.
As a whole, this book is recommended for those who vigilantly follow Drizzt Do'Urden's adventures. But to those who haven't read the Previous Trilogies and the Legacy of the Drow series, I suggest you read those first to fully appreciate this book. While it did not give the same level of excitement the previous books gave, it's still good reading for another piece of Drizzt, our friendly neighborhood drow.
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
The conclusion to the 'Legend of Drizzt' (finally) 17 July 2007
By Chip Hunter - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The Paths of Darkness compendium includes R.A. Salvatore's Forgotten Realms novels published from 1998 to 2001. The principle storyline for this series is the return of Wulfgar from imprisonment by the demon Erttu, and his stuggle to come to grips with his new life. Three of the books included in this one make up the final part of the 'Legend of Drizzt'. One book, Servant of the Shard, seems to have been included in this volume only because of publication order. It is actually the first book of the separate 'Sellswords' trilogy and doesn't really have anything to do with Drizzt and Co.

In The Silent Blade (Forgotten Realms: Paths of Darkness, Book 1), a fresh new adventure for the Companions of the Hall is began. As Drizzt and Co. head out to Spirit Soaring to have Cadderly destroy the (same old) Crystal Shard, monsters hound them at every turn. Wulfgar struggles with inner demons until he finds a place as a bouncer for a rough tavern in Luskan, where he has a great time bashing heads and drinking booze. Artemis Entreri travels back to his roots in Calimport to begin reestablishing his name and fortune. Jarlaxle has ventured out of Menzoberanzan in the search for power and wealth and coaxes Entreri to join his plans. Character development is the primary thing that stands out in this book. Wulfgar, Entreri, and Jarlaxle especially grow as characters. [4-star rating].

The Spine of the World (Forgotten Realms: Paths of Darkness, Book 2) is completely devoted to the continuing struggle of Wulfgar, who cannot seem to overcome his inner demons and allows himself to fall into a rather shameful existence. The story consists of two separate plot-lines that briefly come together near the end of the book. Wulfgar and Morik (who develops nicely here) fight, are framed, get beat, leave Luskan, fight, are framed, get beat, and so on. The other story was actually the more intriguing to me. It involves characters that we've never met before and their emotional wrangling. A hi-bred lord courts a lowly peasant (Meralda), who goes along with it for her family's sake but makes a big mistake in getting knocked up by another man. The two stories come together in an unpredictable way that results in a hugely surprising and satisfying ending. [3-star rating]

The third book in the Paths of Darkness, Servant of the Shard (Forgotten Realms: Paths of Darkness, Book 3), probably shouldn't have been included in this collection. It is really somewhat of a duplicate book, released two different times with different looking covers, the second time as book one of The Sellswords. It is also one of the most enjoyable Salvatore books to date. The Sellswords series follows the adventures of Artemis Enreri and Jarlaxle. This perfect couple is extremely well-developed and are fun to read about. In book 1, the Crystal Shard occupies center stage as the story began in The Silent Blade is continued. The annoyingly pious Cadderly plays a part in the latter parts of the book, but doesn't do too much harm to the story. Excellent fighting scenes and plenty of action make for a fun and exciting read. [5-star rating].

In Sea of Swords (Forgotten Realms: Paths of Darkness), the story of Wulfgar is rejoined for the final book of the Legend of Drizzt. As the Companions of the Hall set out to retrieve Aegis-Fang from the pirate Sheila Kree, it seems nothing could stand in their way. Wulfgar finally comes to terms with his new place in life, and is reunited with his old friends before the final battle. A mysterious elf from Drizzt's past has plotted to slay Drizzt for years and the two meet in an epic clash. Overall, this was a bit disappointing for a Drizzt novel, particularly because of its being the last in the series. [3-star rating].

Overall, these books really start to lose interest as the reader becomes inundated with Drizzt and his friends. The heroes (except Wulfgar ironically) become practically invincible and the stories become predictable. I'm just glad that I'm finally through the Legend of Drizzt (although I probably will read The Hunter's Blades trilogy).
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Great Story 21 Mar 2007
By Kent Harris - Published on
Format: Paperback
This collection continues the excellent tradition of Dnd based Fantasy writing established by R.A. Salvatore, Gary Gygax, and many others!

This collection continues an epic saga focused on R.A. Salvatore's most popular characters: Drizz't, Cattie-Brie, etc. It reads fine stand-alone, but I would highly recommend reading the other collector's editions from the beginning just to get the full character backgrounds and history.

In many cases, series that run so long based on the same characters get stale, but surprisingly, each new series of books in this series is as fresh as the first!

Can't wait to read the next one!

*Laugh* Just read the fine print on reviews. THIS PRODUCT IS UNSAFE! YOU WILL LOSE SLEEP AFTER PURCHASING IT!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Not the greatest of this series 11 Jan 2010
By B. G. Rufleth - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Paths of Darkness wanders away from the typical set of characters. Some will enjoy the exploration of something different but I didn't find these stories as interesting as past installments. If you're a fan of the series I would definitely suggest you not skip these but on their own I wouldn't give them a second look.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The Legend of Drizzt Collector's Edition, Book IV 5 Feb 2011
By Prairibuzzard - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My biggest problem with this book is the lack of information in other reviews and the description on the content of the book. It is three books: The Silent Blade, The Spine of the World and Sea of Swords. This duplicates 3 of the books in the Paths of Darkness gift set which I already have.

If you have enjoyed Drizzt Dourden, this continues the story from Passage to Dawn. This series would be confusing if the reader has not read the earlier stories. Wulfgar is back to the material plane but emotionally scared from his time as Errtu's prisoner. The other friends are on a quest to permanently destroy the Chrenshinibon crystal. This moves the life story along of Drizzt, his friends, and the Forgotten Realms fantasy created by Robert Salvatore.
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