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enjoyable light fantasy
on 20 August 2004
Book 3 of the Mallorean
This book continues the quest of King Belgarion to rescue his kidnapped son from the hands of Zandramas. Picking up right where "King of the Murgos" left off, Garion and company (Belgarath, Polgara, Sadi. C'Nedra, Silk, etc) head off to the continent/Empire of Mallorea under the power of the Emperor Zakath. This seems to be a side trip as they are trying to get to The House of Torak at Ashaba, but the group keeps getting sidetracked. However, as Belgarath says in the book, even with all the distractions, they keep gaining ground and time on Zandramas. That fact is no different in this novel.
While in the capital city of MaL Zeth, reports start coming in about a sorcerer who is raising a legion of demons. While the quest for Garion's son is important, a legion of demons threatens all and must be addressed. Add to this a touch of plague to the city, and Zakath's refusal to let Garion leave, and you have the makings of this novel. Like the other books of this series, it is a familiar story that mirrors that of The Belgariad (the first series involving these characters).
I would consider this to be light fantasy, but because of how well Eddings writes his characters, they feel like old friends from the start, and it is easy to get wrapped up in the story. This is also the 8th book featuring these characters, however, and we are getting the same story over and over again, so that there is really nothing new here. Silk acts like he always does, and says the same things, and Polgara responds the same way. If this is your first time through the series, and you have enjoyed it thus far, you will continue to enjoy it. After reading it multiple times, it begins to grow a little tiresome because of how similar everything David Eddings writes is to each other. This is a fun little series that I greatly enjoyed years ago, and less so today.