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Not all fantasy adventures end happily ever after... and I’m glad they don’t.
on 26 May 2017
When it comes to “The Measure of magic” – Book Two of the Legends of Shannara, Terry Brooks mixes the ingredients of high adventure in perfect proportions.
The remnants of mankind have not learned the harsh lessons inflicted upon them over five hundred years before that led to them being sequestered from the rest of a world ravaged by a demon instigated nuclear war. Come to that, neither have the elves, nor the other races that came into the hidden valley along with them.
Still divided, ever suspicious of creatures not of their own kind, they have remained fragmented and fractious. So much so that their ongoing squabbles and petty politickings play right into the demon’s hands with catastrophic consequences.
You’ll see when we rejoin Panterra Qu, Prue Liss and Phryne Amarantyne as they struggle to come to terms with a drastic change of circumstances. Each has gained varying degrees of magical ability. Yet it is apparent they are ill prepared for the consequences such responsibility involves, nor the hurdles their long-established insecurities seem to place in their way, despite the best of intentions.
This is a darker and altogether grittier tale of how easy it is to rise – or fall – to the occasion, no matter how personally important things may be or how much you want to succeed.
In a nutshell? I absolutely loved it. Frustrating, engaging, poignant and bitter-sweet. Not all fantasy adventures end happily ever after... and I’m glad they don’t.
A superb continuing introduction to the later world of Shannara.