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Dark Elf Trilogy, The by R. A. Salvatore

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Submitted by SteeleMan22 
(Apr 12, 2010)

Hey this is my first review, so I descided to do it on The Dark Elf Trilogy by R.A. Salvitore since I just finished the series. Lets get started, well the whole gist is about how Drizzt spends his life in Mezoberranzan (drow city) and he is basically very different than the other dark elves. He is the best swordsmen their because of his father Zak. Zak was really the only competiton for him in close combat through the whole trilogy. Because of his differences, in Exile (book 2) tells about his adventures in the Underdark. In Sojourn (book 3) he goes to the surfice. He goes through many conflicts and adventures and soon he goes to Iceland Dail to live where he might not be judged as bad. He meets many friends and enemies, but I'm not going to list them because we'll be here all day. Well these book were fun to read. R.A. Salvitore gets to the point with action and the killing and makes it a page turner. R.A did an excellent job, but I wasn't pulled in if you know what I mean. I've read books where I cry, laugh, smile, etc but here I began skimming through it. My favorite scenes mostly were the fight scenes because R.A. was very descriptive with these and it made you just say "hell ya" when he killed a monster or villian. Don't get me wrong these books are amazing if you like action-adventure-fantasy, but I didn't sink into it. I love these books, I'm reading the Icewind Dale Trilogy now. Drizzt the character is bad-ass and his highly one of my favorite characters created. That is why I thank Salvitore for creating this universe so we can escape everyday life and follow the adventures of Drizzt Do'Urden the dark elf.

The whole trilogy I'd give it a 8.7 out of 10.

Homleand: 9.0
Exile: 8.4
Sojourn: 8.9

Submitted by Tim 
(Jun 19, 2009)

I believe this book is a great book. The Underdark was very easily depictable in my imagination because it is a thing based on the very fears in the collective imaginations of humanity. Darkness teeming with monsters, the Unknown, evil lurking in every corner. Yes. Well done.

However, no matter the readability of this trilogy, which is great indeed, I do not believe that this rivals Tolken's great work, the Lord of the Rings trilogy, that has been deemed one of the greatest, possibly THE greatest, fantasy books. Nor do i think that it rivals Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time, which has untold depth and literally almost hundreds of rounded characters. There just was not enough detail to rival the greatness of that.

Oh, don't get me wrong, the books were very well written. What was not depicted in words that formed as a picture easier than words, you could imagine.... My point is not that the book sucks. No, i believe it is a great series. I have read it at least 3 times. No, my point is that it a great series, but it just is not at THAT level. It did not create a world in itself like the other forementioned series. It is based solidly in the Forgotten Realms with the other books of the kind. I like the Forgotten realms, which hold many good novels and themes. But the idea of it is such that, since the author cannot depict a world of their own, they simply slap it into this world, with the very defined limits and such. Rather like the star wars books after the original trilogy. Now THAT is an example of mooching a story. Note that i am using those dreadful star wars books as an EXAMPLE, and NOT as a direct comparison to the Dark Elf Trilogy!

I am not so gifted with words as an author. I have tried to train my writing and have failed, placing in the area of the skill of the forementioned star wars author's skill. So i may have tripped over my toung a couple times in this review. But I believe that I have conveyed this series well, placed it where it belongs.

Overall, I believe that you SHOULD read these books. They are very detailed and I love em! A great start to the world of fantasy. As i have tried to convey above, however, they are not as good as some other series for more hardened fantasy fans. Maybe you might enjoy them more than Tolken or Jordan. I do not know. I simply recommend them for people not expecting a series to rival the best of the best....

Submitted by Silith 
(Sep 29, 2005)

For quite a while now I've been suffering from disinterest in the high fantasy genre, tired of repetitive themes and cookie-cutter characters. I stumbled accross The Dark Elf Trilogy when it was recommended to me by a friend, and it re-kindled my interest. I found the story quite intriguing, and I had trouble telling myself to put it down and get some sleep! One of my favorite high-fantasy series, and I enjoyed it immensely. I recommend this series to anyone looking for a fun, intermediate read, and great series to get involved in.

Submitted by Brenton 
(Mar 28, 2005)

These books are the best of the books that I have ever read. In fact I have read this series four times, along with the rest of he forgotten realms series written by R.A. Salvatore. He has an amazing gift in writting and is able to keep the reader entertained for a long time. I suggest this book for anyone who just wants something new, I can't get my hands off of the series.

Submitted by czar 
(Aug 01, 2003)

While I enjoyed this three book series, there are several things that kept it from rising above its Dungeons and Dragons origins. It takes place in the world of dungeons and dragons, the creatures are largely (entirely?) culled from the Monster Manual, the battles are in the endless "swing, parry, thrust, block" rhythms of dungeons and dragons dice rolling melee. Though I've not played D&D since I was 14 (I'm now 30), Salvatore's world is not his own - it's Gygax and Co's. If the characters were great he might have created something unique in this already existing world, but they are too too often "evil" people who sneer and laugh. Drizzt's reliance on Guenwhyvar the magical cat - which saves his life more than a dozen times (arrrgghhhh!!!!) - seems like an easy - and lazy- way for Salvatore to have his character trump death.
That said, I did enjoy the series as a light amusement for two reasons:

The first reason is because the first book is a unique experience - though it takes place in a pre-existing world. In Homeland, Salvatore throws the reader headfirst into a complicated society of "evil." If the characters didn't lose their temper and laugh "evily" (sic) all the time, this book might have actually been really good given the bizarre scenario, but the characters are mostly thinner than the paper they are written on. Notable exception: the student who becomes the faceless one - the only three-dimensional character in the entire book.

The second reason I enjoyed the series is because the second book is actually good, much better than one and three. In it, Drizzt's pure inner strength is tempered with barbarism and the world of the svirfneblim is explored. Belwar and his weapons are well imagined and Clacker's origin is intriguing. The wizard's tower is very cleverly handled. Also, how many books have a monster hurling cattle at other monsters?

The series should have ended with this second book, but the third volume follows, largely aping the form of the second, but with less compelling characters.

I guess The Dark Elf Trilogy is so popular because it is easy for D&D players past and present to imagine the world and creatures, but that- along with easy solutions to obstacles and laughing villains - is what makes it a middling offering off fantasy writing.

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