The Rest of Shandril’s Saga

A little over half a year ago I posted some comments on Spellfire, book 1 of Shandril’s Saga.

I finished the second and third books, Crown of Fire and Hand of Fire.  In retrospect, that was a bit of a mistake.

The next two books had all of the flaws of the first book, while repeating the same events and situations over and over again.  There were so many dimensionless throw-away characters that it was hardly even worth remembering their names.

Essentially what these books were was a three-chapter plot drawn out into two full-length books.  I thought Robert Jordan could drag a story well beyond its useful life, but Ed Greenwood is even more hardcore about it.

It took an act of will to finish Hand of Fire.  One can only read about so many near-identical attacks on a caravan before falling into a coma, and it almost seems like the whole point of the book was to use the word ‘blandreth’ as much as possible.

It’s sad when the main characters of a book are so shallow and boring that you hope they’ll die so you can stop reading about them.  Two stars for Crown of Fire and 1.5 for Hand of Fire.  I hope Greenwood’s Elminster books aren’t this bad.

5 Comments

  • Tiu says:

    Bah, read some good fantasy books then, off the top of my head:

    George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones series
    Steven Erikson’s Malazan series
    Paul Kearney’s Hawkwood’s Voyageseries, and Sea Beggar series
    R Scott Bakker’s Prince of Nothing series
    Dan Simmons Hyperion series
    Robin Hobb
    Glen Cook Black Company & Dread Empire

  • Tiu says:

    logged on briefly:

    You can’t roll a neogi, illithid, or umber hulk
    it would appear no race can be a mystic?
    thri-kreen psionicists (didnt check giths) cant cast or will any of their spells, furthermore i think it insists you type the entire spell name or it gievs you the error message: “spell names msut always be in single quotes, such as: cast ‘magic missile’ troll.” Otherwise you get the message “You can’t do that.”

  • Xangis says:

    Reports noted. Enslaver side creation isn’t enabled yet because right now it’s a holdover from when the code only allowed them as a remort side. Same with Mystics. I’ll dig into it.

  • Xangis says:

    Oh, and on the books —

    I’m trying to read some Forgotten Realms because back in middle/high school days I was glued to Dragonlance, and most of those were pretty good (thanks to Weis/Hickman). Now I’d probably think they were a little too juvenile if I read them again, but at age 13 they rocked. My best friend Bert kept trying to get me to read FR, but I never did but always felt a little guilty about not reading them.

    I’ve read the Game of Thrones. Funny thing that series – nobody can come up with a plot better than Martin, but his prose leaves a lot to be desired, and to a certain extent it looks like his style is trying to copycat Jordan. If he would come up with the plot/intrigue part and let someone better at filling in the details actually write it it might be the best. The only thing he seems to write well is fight scenes. I’m looking forward to seeing the show, though. Most of the casting decisions are absolutely brilliant.

    Haven’t read any of the others yet, I’ll keep an eye out for ’em. Some of the more prominent in the “to be read” pile are Terry Brooks and David Eddings, but I’m a little afraid of starting another “too many books” type of series.

  • Tiu says:

    I’ve read the Belgariad series by Eddings. It’s bad, the type of thing only a kid would enjoy, very amateur. I haven’t read any Brooks in a long time, I wasn’t a big fan of his. I prefer the gritty, realistic sci-fi/fantasy. So if you like the same check out the ones I mentioend.

    Heh, I also like long series, as if the story is good, the longer the better, though when it comes to someone like George R.R. Martin who takes for fucking ever to finish a book, that sucks.

    Malazan is a 10 book series, 9 are out, the 10th comes out next year (he has consistently put out 1 a year, so thtas reliable).
    Hawkwoods Voyage is done, the sea beggars is only 2 of 4 done, and the last 2 are a long tiem coming.
    Prince of Nothing, the first trilogy is done, the second trilogy is 2 out of 3 done I think, I’m waiting for him to finish it before starting the second trilogy.
    Hyperion is completed.
    Hobb has written 3 trilogies in the same world, all finished, another trilogy I didnt like as much in a seperate world, also finished, and then just went back tot hat first world and finished a 2 book series recently.
    Cook’s Black Company series is pretty much done, he says he might write a few more stories later. And I believe Dread Empire is done.

    just FYI!