Customer Review

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Feeling short-changed by this series., 20 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Bloodfire Quest: Book 2 of The Dark Legacy of Shannara (Hardcover)
I began to read Terry Brooks in 1977 with The Sword of Shannara and have bought pretty much every book he's written since. The early Shannara books (Sword, Wishsong and Scions) remain some of my favourite fantasy books, but it seems I'm not alone in noticing a decline in the standard of Brooks' writing. It's not that the Dark Legacy series is poor storytelling, despite the retreading of earlier books, it simply feels like the sketch outline of the novel Brooks should have written. Compared to earlier works the characters, good and 'bad', lack detail and fleshing out. This leaves me not caring too much about the Ohmsford heroes of the story and not understanding the motivations of Edinja Orle, the magic-wielding newly promoted Federation Prime Minister, in her campaign against the druids and the elves. Even the demons seem lacklustre this time around and petty in their ambitions (give me what I want and I'll happily march back into the forbidding and stay there). Gone is the grand panorama Brooks painted last time the forbidding came down, with what seemed a cross between Tolkein's Last Alliance and the Spartans at Thermopylae; this time the elves half-heartedly send a few blokes to see if anything is happening.....

Aside from feeling like a plot outline, the books are very short (something of a trend developing from 'Armageddons Children' onwards) and my cynical side feels that all three installments could easily have been published as one book, but this way the publishers, etc, make three times the money; okay if you're dealing with something like the Scions series, but with this Shannara-lite set I'm feeling short changed. I'll almost certainly buy the last instalment to see where this story goes, but will think long and hard about investing in future books if this decline continues.
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