Saturday, October 15, 2005

Fantasy Book Review: The Runes Of The Earth

The Runes Of The Earth
Stephen R. Donaldson.

You either know this author’s works, or you should. And yes I am totally bias. He is second on my list of all time epic fantasy authors, right after only Tolkien himself. So, take this review, if you will, with a pinch of hurtloam.

The Runes Of The Earth is the first book in his "Last" Chronicles of Thomas Covenant which will comprise four volumes when complete. And, though seemingly a slow read, is packed with classic Donaldson wonders, inner turmoil, outer conflict and insidious underpinnings. A fantastic start.

To get you up to speed on what is what, Donaldson gives wonderful account of all major events which took place in the first and second chronicles. Suffice it to say you should experience them in full and not rely on the synopsis provided, but if you don’t you will soon get the gist of what has transpired in the past. Basically Thomas Covenant is dead, but the Land is in more trouble than ever before.

The main character is Linden Avery, whom we are familiar with in the second chronicles or the synopsis as having been in and had a huge part in saving the Land in the past. Strange things begin to happen to her in the real world which leads her to believe there is once again trouble in the Land, and that Lord Foul and now even fouler things are stirring again. I don’t want to give anything away really since it is so well worth the read.

So - general impressions. Hella good read, very imaginative with ample mystery and familiarity wrapped into the appropriate Donaldson package. And, the author did it to me again, after the last chapter I was shaking my head and cursing his name - in a good way - then immediately scouring the internet to find out when volume two was coming out.

My only hint, if you haven’t yet read it - is, why do you think this series is called the "Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant"?

Are you still hear reading this - run, run now and buy, then consume this book. You will not be sorry you did.

End of bias ravings - much more and I may create a caesure . . .

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