|Submitted by Christopher Ware |
(Oct 19, 2003)
Unlike the first book in this series (Chris Pierson's SPIRIT OF THE WIND), this book doesn't have a compelling plot that draws the reader into the book. There is a bare semblance of a plot, but nothing truly engaging. It's about Sara Dunstan's (Steel Brightblade's foster mother) infiltration of the regrouped Knights of Takhisis. Herbert tells this story with no real goal observable to the reader. There is an ultimate goal of the book, but it's really just to set up a story element that will appear in subsequent books in the Dragonlance universe.
The big redeeming quality of this book is the character of Sara Dunstan. Readers were first introduced to her in Weis & Hickman's THE SECOND GENERATION and we saw more of her in their DRAGONS OF SUMMER FLAME. This book fleshes here character out much more than those two did. Since the book is told from her point of view, we get to observe the various facets of her character. This is important since I get the feeling that she will be playing a larger role down the road, possibly in Weis & Hickman's War of Souls trilogy (which I have yet to read).
The writing in the book was solid, although the supporting characters all seemed pretty one dimensional. The new general of the Knights of Takhisis was kind of interesting and it would be neat to see her fleshed out in another book at some point. Herbert does a good job of telling the story and getting to the point where the necessary things (I don't want to ruin things for people who haven't read it yet) are established for use in later books. I just wasn't engrossed in the story since there wasn't much of a plot to get involved in. Decent book and Dragonlance fans might find it useful in understanding these new concepts that I'm not mentioning. If you're not a completist, though, you can probably skip it and not miss out on much.