As my first review, I need to introduce you to a story you’ve probably heard about before: The Shannara Chronicles.
Let’s just forget about the annoying MTV adaptation of the book: that is just an insult to Terry Brooks stories.
An ancient evil threatens the Elves and the Races of Man. The Ellcrys, the tree of long-lost Elven magic, is dying and unraveling the spell of Forbidding that locks the hordes of Demons away from the population of the Four Lands. Already the dreadful Reaper is free and only by taking a new seed in the mysterious Bloodfire can the Ellcrys be reborn and the Forbidding made whole.
Only Allanon, the last remaining member of the Druids of Paranor, knows the full extent of the problem, but even the last druid cannot be at two places at the same time.
Therefore, he must ask unlikely heroes for help – including Wil Ohmsford, the grandson of Shea Ohmsford, one of the main characters in The Sword of Shannara, and Amberle Elessedil, the granddaughter of Eventine Elessedil, the King of the Elves.
This book feels like Terry Brooks finally found his own voice, as it is, this time, much different from Tolkien’s writings in structure, characters, and plot. The writer is not shy on killing off characters – not to the extent of what George R.R. Martin does, but in his case, the killings start literally on the first pages of the book. In my opinion, it is also darker than both the first one of the series and the whole Lord of the Rings trilogy.
The characters in this book are interesting, comparing with the ones from the previous book (Allanon); they are more compelling and their personalities are more enhanced. We have the Druid’s point of view which really helps to understand his motives and makes him more human than countless wise wizards from other fantasy novels who never bother to show their motives to mere mortals – including the readers.
Somebody already mentioned that the original trilogy must be judged after at least the second book, and I completely agree with this.
However, The Elfstones of Shannara had a few flaws I can’t look past. The last chapters completely and absolutely wrecked me (and maybe I shouldn’t consider this as a flaw). Yet, it does deserve the status of being classified as classic fantasy.
The Elfstones of Shannara is an amazing piece of fantasy that makes you travel to another time and place.
It was an amazing read, a wonderful beginning for the series (the first one really doesn’t count), and I can’t wait to start the next.
If you want to buy this book, check out the link below: