“A review of the entire fantasy series.”

 

NO MAJOR SPOILERS

A completely ordinary boy, growing up in a very unremarkable setting … sandy haired Garion lives with his aunt on Faldor’s farm. Aunt Pol tends the kitchen, while little Garion gets into the mischief of ordinary children everywhere. Ordinary and unremarkable, so much so that one might start to wonder if that very unremarkableness could be the result of very meticulous orchestration. What exactly might Garion’s environment be set up to hide? For exactly how long has this been playing out?

These questions suddenly become very pronounced on the night that Garion’s whole world gets to be overthrown. Master Wolf, the wandering story teller, shows up same as every year of Garion’s existence since he could remember – but this time Garion’s life gets changed completely … maybe forever.

Telling no one where they are going or why, under cover of darkness, Garion and his aunt leave everything and everyone that has ever been familiar to him behind. Joining them on their flight is Durnik the blacksmith and Mister Wolf. Mister Wolf who does not seem to be such a harmless vagabond storyteller after all … even aunt Pol seems different.

Along the journey they are joined by some very peculiar companions. A small man, with nimble fingers and questionable morals, ambiguously known as Silk. A large bearish man called Barak. Both for some reason essential to the very outcome of this quest.

David Eddings sweeps the reader along on an epic adventure. The world of 8 kingdoms unfold, revealing the intricate politics of gods and men and sorcerers, all steering towards the one “event” that will determine their ultimate future. Two opposing forces seek to influence the outcome of that event, and Garion and his friends are caught up in the race to save the destiny of all mankind.

A magical tale to be enjoyed by the young, and the young of heart. Eddings’ characters show such depth and intricacy that you come to feel as if you know them personally. At times I feel myself missing some of them like my own family and I have to go and re- read the story to be close to them. I’ve read and re-read this story since I was twelve years old (more than twenty years ago). During the ten books that comprise Garion’s story you’ll find yourself laughing out loud, and sometimes sobbing uncontrollably, or worrying about the outcome. The story draws you inside and makes you part of it, and leaves a piece of it inside your heart.

Reviewed by:

Vicky Odendaal

Added 24th July 2015

NO MAJOR SPOILERS

 

This is another series I have reviewed as a whole because it really is one continuous story.  The series comprises of 5 short (less than 500 pages) novels – very short for fantasy.

In common with so many of the books I like, this is epic fantasy: mad gods, huge forces being unleashed, magic, battles and history – it’s all there.  However, whilst the story is a good one (in the ‘coming of age’ milieu), Eddings true talent lies in his incredible characterisation.

The characters are drawn in exquisite detail, whilst their interactions with each other are pure gold and a joy to read.  A friend of mine once pejoratively dismissed the series as “cuddly fantasy”.

Needless to say I disagree with this assessment, and think it was a kind of inverse snobbery as to how accessible and ‘human’ the story is (akin to fans of a little-known band who then get annoyed when the band become successful and accuse them of ‘selling out’).

This is such a ridiculously easy read that I would recommend it to anyone who has either been turned off fantasy because of the overly complex language/made-up terms in other novels – or for anyone who is unwilling to give fantasy a go because of this issue.

 

Reviewed by:

Debbie McCarthy

Added 22nd April 2015

More Reviews By
Debbie McCarthy

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