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Do not judge, lest ye be judged...
on 10 June 2014
For Warcraft Fans:
Garrosh committed some atrocious crimes in the name of his 'True Horde'. As we found at the end of 'Mists', Garrosh was not to be tried by his enemy King Varian, nor by the swiftness of Thrall's (sorry, Go'el...) Doomhammer, but he was to be tried by the people he probably hurt the most; the people of Pandaria.
And tried literally he would be. This book is the story of the trial of Garrosh Hellscream at The Temple of the White Tiger in northern Pandaria. Taran Zhu presides as Judge and the August Celestial's are there to be the jury. Members past and present of the Horde and Alliance are brought to be called as witnesses to the accused crimes, some just to observe but ALL to see Garrosh burn for the things he had done. But as in all things Warcraft, not everything is destined to go to plan...
The writing is supurb. Christie is a master of imagery and understands the personalities of these characters, from Anduin Wrynn's wisdom and purity of heart past his years, to Vol'Jin's quiet power, to Baine Bloodhoof's nobility despite the always great conflicts of heart he faces and Jaina Proudmoore's both heartfelt and powerfully good side, and her seething, bitter, dark hatred of the Son of Grom. Every character is portrayed *exactly* as you imagine them to be... I could go on, but you should have no fear of if Christie has 'got' the characters. She has. She does every time.
Of course there are some interesting side plots, one involving Sylvanas Windrunner and another involving some of some of Garrosh's old buddies conspiring with a certain dragon, but it is the courtroom drama that is front, center and the star of the show here. We see some sides of characters we haven't seen before, and every revelation to the court will have you bristling, or when certain witnesses are brought forward to give testimony against (or even for) Garrosh (or evidence shown in a *very* novel way...) if you know your WoW lore you'll be putting your head in your hands at knowing what is coming next.
This is up there with Lord of the Clans, Rise of the Horde/Lich King and The Shattering as Christie Golden's best WoW work. If you love the rich lore of Warcraft and want to build yourself up for Warlords of Draenor then there is no better way than reading War Crimes. Buy it.
For Non Warcraft Fans:
If you love fantasy books, Christie Golden is an amazing writer and you cannot fail buying *any* of her books. She can create the most vivid of imagery and brings characters to life with real emotion and depth. Yes, you are going to be at a *massive* loss if you don't know the back story to this book or indeed play the World of Warcraft games... but it could still be a good read anyway. If you want my opinion, if you don't play WoW, don't get this book... but start playing WoW. Learn it's rich and deep story and most of all, once you have played for a while, read Christie's books. They will enrich your enjoyment of WoW to new levels. I'd love to say by not playing WoW you're not missing out but... well... you know... ;)