|Submitted by Why Key |
(Mar 06, 2011)
I confess (really?) that I have not read the 11 books but rather listened to all of them on audio. Took quite a while. Finished. Wow! What a ride...
Conclusions... It was worthwhile. At times the books content was diluted too much. The endless repetitions of things we knew already from previous book or description of inner struggles and thoughts of characters stretched for long miles.
Some books stand aside, like "Soul of the Fire" and "Pillars of Creation", where the story introduces new characters and gives full account of their lives. Seemingly, the new characters and their "insignificant" lives have nothing to do with main line of the series, but this is not so. As the story progresses, every character and every detail falls into prescribed place and, like in a huge clockwork, the whole giant mechanism comes into motion. Be sure, if author mentions something in book 1 it will resurface in book 11 (or earlier) and play its role.
All characters are very well written and they are believable. They are not shallow or superficial. Even non-human creatures are lively and fun. Take Scarlett for instance.
What is the most amazing in the series and probably missed by some readers is the philosophical, religious and ethical message of the author. "Our lives are ours to live" is so simple and basic that it is easy to miss as it is so obvious. However, this is what our (real) world is constantly trying to take from us. I believe the books tell a metaphorical story of our world, this is why the story resonates so much. It is not for the wizards and dragons, but for those ethical ideas I like the series so much.
Richard seems to have expressed true (well of course) meaning of ideology and religion and what it means to follow such beliefs rather than to be guided by reason and think for oneself.
I take liberty guessing that Imperial Order is guided by something very much resembling Marxist ideology and promotes communism in its extreme. Order's tactics and application of the ideology reminds of what happened in many countries after 1917 (such as Russia and China). The Red Plague that turned on itself once it cold not swallow the rest of the world.
Unfortunately, in our real world there is no Orden to send our own Fellowship with its followers to their isolated realm. No boundaries to be raised from underworld either.
We have to deal with our problems ourselves.
And one more thing. Terry Brooks vs Terry Goodkind. They are not the same person as some reviews claim. I have read all of the "Word vs Void" books. Some of these books are marginally original, although characters are shallow and story is predictable. There are still some similarities between the two series but honestly, what can you expect in this genre with literally megatons of books written every year on the subject of dragons, swords, knights and wizards.
Goodkind uses the fantasy settings to tell us a cautionary and metaphoric tale of our own history. This sets him aside. Let's learn what we can. Excellent books. Thanks.