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Wizard's First Rule (Sword of Truth #1)

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4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  138,312 ratings  ·  4,446 reviews
The masterpiece that started The New York Times bestselling epic Sword of Truth

In the aftermath of the brutal murder of his father, a mysterious woman, Kahlan Amnell, appears in Richard Cypher's forest sanctuary seeking help . . . and more. His world, his very beliefs, are shattered when ancient debts come due with thundering violence.

In a dark age it takes courage to live
...more
Paperback, 836 pages
Published April 14th 2003 by Tor Books (first published January 1st 1994)
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Oneeyed I have to agree with Avaminn. This series feels subpar compared to Jordan or Erikson's works. So I very much doubt you'd like it. Goodkind is very…moreI have to agree with Avaminn. This series feels subpar compared to Jordan or Erikson's works. So I very much doubt you'd like it. Goodkind is very derivative of Tolkien, even more so than Jordan, but without any flair or talent.
I had a hard time even finishing the first book and it's kind of obsessive with me to finish every book I start... so yeah it was pretty bad.(less)
A Game of Thrones by George R.R. MartinJ.R.R. Tolkien 4-Book Boxed Set by J.R.R. TolkienThe Name of the Wind by Patrick RothfussThe Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. LewisThe Eye of the World by Robert Jordan
The Best Epic Fantasy
10th out of 2,300 books — 16,142 voters
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. RowlingThe Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. TolkienA Game of Thrones by George R.R. MartinThe Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. LewisThe Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
Best Fantasy Series, Trilogies, and Duologies
14th out of 1,742 books — 7,337 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Keely
It is always curious to see fantasy authors who don't consider themselves to be fantasy authors. Case-in-point: Terry Goodkind. The former landscape painter has told us how he isn't a fantasy author in every interview he's ever given:

"The books I write are first of all novels, not fantasy, and that is deliberate; I'm really writing books about human beings."(1)

"To define me as a fantasy writer is to misunderstand the context of my books by misidentifying their fundamentals."(2)

"The stories I'm t
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Icarus
Terry Goodkind is a grossly inept writer, with the writing ability of a somewhat intelligent seventh-grader, but he jumped into the wide-open fantasy field when there were hardly any good fantasy writers (a state that hasn't completely changed, btw) and he has the persistence to turn out 600 page novels, and so he got published and now he's grandfathered in, because some people don't have better taste than to buy his novels. Additionally, his early work is grotesquely derivative, mostly of Rober ...more
John Wiswell
Dec 12, 2013 John Wiswell rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Hardcore fantasy readers, preferably young ones who read fast
Wizard's First Rule is a good example of why people think all post-Tolkien Fantasy is trash. It bears one tenth of Tolkien's imagination, a smaller fraction of his brilliant study, and - oh look, swords! Cliche family drama, an angsty romance between tormented lovers, powerful characters who are so unjustly tortured - it's immature at best. At its best, it is a clunky and self-indulgently obtuse hero's journey. Then there's the hundred page BDSM tangent, where the hero goes through excruciating ...more
seak
Feb 05, 2012 seak rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: audio, 2012
Richard and Kahlen's Relationship Timeline:

Day One:
Richard: "Kahlen, now that we just met, we're the bestestest friends aren't we?"
Kahlen: "We sure are."

Day Two:
Richard: "Kahlen, we're the bestestest of friends and I would give my life for you even though we just met."
Kahlen: "Me too!"

Day Three:
Richard: "Kahlen, I love you more than life itself. What? It's only been three days? Well, that still seems sensible."
Kahlen: "My sentiments exactly!"

Days Four through 20:
Richard: "Love, love, love."
Kahle
...more
Dave
Jun 18, 2010 Dave rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Teens +
Shelves: fantasy
The sheer depth of Wizard's First Rule is simply amazing. His characters are unique and original, yet seem simple when you realize that they aren't perfect. Every chapter you read will cling you tighter to his series. Of course, many will dislike Terry Goodkind's works, either because he establishes dead on ethics in an 'I'm right, your wrong' approach, or because of dissatisfaction with his writing style, but it would be a baseless altercation to state that he is a run-in-the-mill, and mediocre ...more
k.wing
Nov 07, 2007 k.wing rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: ...
Shelves: quit-reading
I'm sorry. I really did try for this one, as I love my boyfriend (very much) who loves this book. I found the writing unbearable, as I would rather smell my dog's breath and lick his teeth than have to read words written by Terry Goodkind. That being said, I was interested in the story, but it was as if the guy did not have an editor. Oh, he had spell check, don't get me wrong, but no one told him to take out the emotions and/or inner-dialogue he would repeat up to 4 times in a paragraph.

I did
...more
Jen
Dec 26, 2013 Jen rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Dungeons and Dragons fans, sadists
I am adding this author to the list of people that I wouldn't want to have lunch with. After this review, I suspect he won't want to have lunch with me either.
This book reads like a game of Dungeons and Dragons. It's a quest, a bit formulaic, and at times I could practically hear the narrator telling me to roll the ten-sided die to see what happens when we go down the left fork. In this book, we have the hapless regular guy who through a great series of coincidences finds himself traveling to sa
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Cera
The gender ideologies underlying the novel's cosmology are just so profoundly disturbing that I couldn't enjoy what there was of the story -- not that I was likely to enjoy it anyway, since it featured large amounts of sexual torture of Our Hero. It's really not any more tasteful when gender-reversed.
Joe
Terry Goodkind likes rape. A lot. I wouldn't be surprised to find out he's a Neo Nazi. Let's have a character who kills everyone who's brown colored and celebrate him! And villains that rape a lot! Rape! Rapedy rape rape rape, rape rape! There are entire webpages devoted to people talking about the worst passages of these horrible books. I suggest you do something better with your time, like scraping mildew. It'll be more enjoyable.

Fuck you, Terry Goodkind, and fuck your Nazi Randian viewpoints.
...more
Jason
Nov 24, 2007 Jason rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people 10 years old or younger
Shelves: fantasy
I was referred to Terry Goodkind as a better alternative to Robert Jordan. I feel betrayed and lied to. Or maybe it was some kind of joke. Goodkind's characters are simply not believeable, and this absolutely kills the book. The dialog is forced, and it feels as if no one ever proof read Goodkind's "masterpiece."
If you like books written in a style where if you squint your eyes and pretend that instead of reading, you are watching a one-liner Bruce Willis fantasy movie, go out and get this bo
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Doug Bradshaw
Feb 02, 2008 Doug Bradshaw rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Fantasty Literature Readers
Recommended to Doug by: Janssen
I ripped right through the book and all and all, enjoyed it. Here is some of my input:

1. I found that the story moved along well and that I was always entertained. The main hero is a bit Frodoian, and perhaps a bit Arthurian, but it is its own unique story and an entertaining cast of characters.

2. The story sometimes gets a bit twisted with torture, rape, bad guys who like young boys, overly bad bad guys. The training and torture chapter was beyond what I was comfortable with, but making it th
...more
Tim
When an author displays a poorly developed writing style I have a hard time getting past it and caring about the story. That's what happend to me with this book. The story was decent, but Goodkind's writing was lousy. He probably improved with later efforts, but I'll never know because I'm not going to read them.
Nekouken
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
James
Excellent series of contemporary fantasy. Goodkind's books always center around difficult moral or social concepts that are put to the test by believable characters. The theme of Goodkind's books is that people should be true to themselves, not sacrificing their beliefs for conformist ideals or things that sound appealing but have no grounding in reality. To truly live one's life is what is most important. Towards the end of the series, this theme tends to get a little preachy and starts to lean ...more
Tawnya
Looking over reviews, most people either hated or loved this book. I liked it. It is somewhat formulaic, along the lines of Lord of the Rings--Good vs Evil, with a little romance, but I thought there were some surprises along the way and the plot was kept moving along. Perhaps best of all, the author can describe things, but not belabor the point, and there is no language, or sex. There is some violence (of course, given the plot), but most is, again, not in great detail, just enough to set the ...more
StoryTellerShannon
OVERALL GRADE: B to B plus; READ: 2000 (revised review early April 2012).

CONCEPT: A young woodsman is chosen as the Seeker, a long lost position of power given to a warrior of ultimate good in distant lands. Now, he must go to those distant lands to face the Evil controlling it, as well as to deal with issues of truth. Along his journey, his position is tested as his love for his new lady love. (This didn't hit me as big of a concept as say HUMA or THE HOBBIT. But, it attracted a lot of fantasy
...more
David Holec
Kdybych to měl nějak tak shrnout, celou knihu jsem si rozdělil na několik částí.

1. Eragon
2. Pán prstenů
3. Pýcha a předsudek
4. Neidentifikovatelný BDSM erotický román.
5. Neidentifikovatelný BDSM erotický román.
6. Neidentifikovatelný BDSM erotický román.
7. Eragon
8. Godzilla

Nechci nějak specifikovat, proč zrovna tohle, protože by to byl samý spoiler.
A taky trochu přeháním, samozřejmě se mi to hrozně líbilo. Nevydržím dlouho bez dalšího dílu. :))
Kiri
This is yet another standard fantasy tale, with a questing youth and his magical item and aged mentor who turns out to be the premier wizard in the land. I didn't enjoy this book for a variety of reasons, but mainly for the repeated appearance of overused fantasy elements and the inane dialogue between the protagonist and his romantic interest. The wizard character is more interesting and engaging. With one exception, there are no plot surprises, and things are always just a little too convenien ...more
Suzanne
Jun 28, 2012 Suzanne rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Nobody with taste in fiction
Recommended to Suzanne by: Somebody who I will have a hard time forgiving
I can honestly say this is the worst piece of fiction I have ever encountered, in any genre. It's hard to know where to start critiquing this book since I hated so very many things about it. First off, it is about four times too long. I'm all for an epic sized novel if the story can support it, but this one doesn't come close.

The dialogue is, for the most part, trite and boring and the characters are all astoundingly two-dimensional and unauthentic. They are all constantly doing things against
...more
Kewpie
Out of all of the Terry Goodkind books I've ever read, this is the best. It was mildly entertaining and I managed to finish it. Other than that.. eh..

I'm just not a fan. I figured out how the book would end as soon as "wizard's first rule" entered into the plot.

Also -- about the romance -- NOT buying it. He carefully explained all of the rituals he went through to deepen his devotion, but I didn't feel much of anything except for some brief physical attraction in about the middle of the book. T
...more
Stephen
3.0 stars. Before Song of Ice and Fire came along, this was a standard for me for epic fantasy. I really liked the story, the main characters and the world building. My affection for the story has waned as I have read more and more fantasy that I feel is superior. Still, a decent read.
sologdin
The text wants rhetorical discipline, its worst problem, and likewise evidences, at best, an amateur aesthetics.

The text moreover adopts a number of trite narrative elements, including the hero's journey, the numinous object, the freudian psychodrama, the derivative Teutonic creatures, the 'system' of magickes--the last of which is a routine mechanic of pseudo-rationalized fantasy, wherein the author appreciates the Mystical sufficiently to write about ghosts and goblins, but doesn't trust the n
...more
Jessica
My goodness, this book is poorly written. I had read (edit: skimmed) it years ago, and I don't remember it being this bad. But IT IS. The story itself isn't awful (although some of it seems like a blatant ripoff of other, better writers. Sam=Gollum. Seriously. See for yourself) , but Goodkind trying to tell it is bordering on embarrassing. Goodkind is the type of author who obviously pictures every scene in his mind. So he can tell you that Kahlan laid her chin on her hand with her elbow resting ...more
Terrence
Jul 10, 2012 Terrence rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Terrence by: Holly
I was recommended by my friend to read this book. She exclaimed that Terry Goodkind's imagination was second to none. Hearing such high acclaim from my friend, I agreed to give Wizard's First Rule a try.

At first, I found it very hard to believe that such a cliché book with non-original character and plots could make such an impression. This impression quickly changed. How it did, I still do not know. Perhaps it was simply Goodkind's descriptive words that fluidly described every colourful event
...more
Rob Towell
This series as a whole is very good. I found that once I picked up the first book I flew through the whole series, stopping only when I read the last one out. I then continued reading as they came out. When I started reading them their was only five books, now that the series is complete we can set the whole thing into some perspective. I will be happy to see the TV show starting fall of 2008 and hope it is as good as the books.

On the less than benign side, the author does tend to stop telling t
...more
Jaye
I was warned heavily about this series. Warned to not venture there-it wasn't good. Since the TV show (so loosely based off the books that it shouldn't even be considered connected) I decided to give it a shot, and had a couple of changes of heart along the way.

At first I loved it, then about 300 pages in I had a change of heart. Kahlan, the lead female, is extremely weak at times. Maybe it's only a perception, because there is so much "mystery" about who/what she really is for most of the book.
...more
Helen
I didn't find this as bad as many people seems to think it is, but I also didn't see anything that made it particularly special. It was an average, somewhat bloated, epic fantasy that belongs buried on the shelf along with all of the other epic fantasies.

Oh, I will say that it seemed to me that this author REALLY loves his main characters. Maybe too much, as I found the over-the-top character adulation a little creepy. I still thought the story was okay.
Chelsea
"Kahlan, we're BFF, isn't that great?"

"It really is great! I'm highly secretive though so I won't tell you why I'm wearing this white dress. I'm def. not Aes Sedai though."

"Kahlan, I know we've only known each other for like five hours, but I don't want to lose you to the underworld, and I want you to take my strength."

"That sounds good to me too, I usually camp out under trees with strange men. Second time this week I've done it."
Linzy
I dont normally love fantasy fiction, but this is totally different. It has a major life lesson in every book. There are 12 books in this series. The characters are just people who happen to have magical powers. I cant even begin to tell you what the book is about because it will ruin it. The main charcters have strong personalities and I love that Kahlan(the heroine)kicks butt in the books. I must warn there is definetely violence. There is wars, rape( not explicit though)and people definetely ...more
Melda
Nerden başlasam, ne desem bilemedim...
Yine en yakın dostumu kaybettim.
Yapma dediler, tuğla gibi kitabı nasıl İngilizce okuyacaksın dediler, ben de denemeden nasıl bilirim dedim, hem de bu dünyaya gerçek manada girmeye çok hevesliyim, aslanım kaplanım Mord-Sith'im, yaparım dedim...
Terry ne güzel bir yazarmış, ne tatlı yazıyormuş, bir adamın her şeyle ilgili mi bilgisi olur? Dostluk. Kardeşlik. Babalık. Annelik. Aşk. İmkansız aşk. Adeta dede-torun ilişkisi. Adeta mümkün olsa canını acıtsa da onu
...more
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IS IT WORTH READING? 167 758 Oct 30, 2014 07:59AM  
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Monster World: witches/ wizards 1 5 Feb 22, 2014 11:38AM  
Small Government ...: Wizard's First Rule by Terry Goodkind 3 21 Nov 17, 2013 07:22AM  
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Terry Goodkind is a contemporary American writer and author of the best-selling epic fantasy series, The Sword of Truth, creator of the television show The Legend of the Seeker, and writer of the self-published epic, The First Confessor: The Legend of Magda Searus (a prequel and origin story of the first Mother Confessor). He has over 20 million copies in print and has been translated into more th ...more
More about Terry Goodkind...

Other Books in the Series

Sword of Truth (1 - 10 of 14 books)
  • Stone of Tears (Sword of Truth, #2)
  • Blood of the Fold (Sword of Truth, #3)
  • Temple of the Winds (Sword of Truth, #4)
  • Soul of the Fire (Sword of Truth, #5)
  • Faith of the Fallen (Sword of Truth, #6)
  • The Pillars of Creation (Sword of Truth, #7)
  • Naked Empire (Sword of Truth, #8)
  • Chainfire (Sword of Truth, #9)
  • Phantom (Sword of Truth, #10)
  • Confessor (Sword of Truth, #11)
Stone of Tears (Sword of Truth, #2) Blood of the Fold (Sword of Truth, #3) Temple of the Winds (Sword of Truth, #4) Faith of the Fallen (Sword of Truth, #6) Soul of the Fire (Sword of Truth, #5)

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“People are stupid. They will believe a lie because they want to believe it's true, or because they are afraid it might be true.” 928 likes
“Sometimes, making the wrong choice is better than making no choice. You have the courage to go forward, that is rare. A person who stands at the fork, unable to pick, will never get anywhere.” 344 likes
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