Dusty Craine's Reviews > The Magic Kingdom of Landover: Volume 1

The Magic Kingdom of Landover by Terry Brooks
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Sep 10, 2010

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How do you review an omnibus of three books without giving away any spoilers? I don’t know so I’m not going to try. These are the first three books in the Landover series of fantasy novels by Terry Brooks. It is a story that is continually crossing over between our real-world Chicago and a magical Kingdom named Landover.

Book one opens with Ben Holiday, a successful lawyer and partner in a law firm who still grieves the loss of his wife, Annie. He opens a holiday catalog that is exclusive to people of affluence and finds an ad to purchase a magical kingdom. He debates but ultimately buys the throne of Landover.

Upon entry into Landover he finds things are not quite what he expected. The kingdom is rotting away as a result of Landover not having a king in so long. The magic of the land is tied to the magic found in having a king on the throne that commands the mysterious Paladin. The mystery of the Paladin permeates the first book and the conclusion is ultimately satisfying and if I’m being honest, I think it’s pretty bad ass.

Ben pretty quickly encounters his most loyal followers who play a prominent part in the remainder of the three books. The court wizard, Questor Thews, the court scribe, Abernathy, who is actually a dog who talks and walks upright on account of a spell gone wrong that turned him from a man to a dog. He also has two kobolds in his service, Bunion and Parsnip. The latter of those also serves as the royal chef.

If I have any complaint at all it is that the Kingdom of Landover has a very claustrophobic feel. Ben sets off on a mission to visit all of the different peoples of his Kingdom and it seems to last only three or four stops. In fact a quick look over at a Landover Wiki reveals only five particular locations of note within Landover and one is not visited in the first three books, if it ever is.

Of course the list of major characters is only 13 people deep with most of them having already been introduced. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you form a close bond with them; instead I seem to be more fascinated in what happens next rather than who might live or die.

In conclusion, I think Terry Brooks has created a likeable story and universe in which I’ll love to visit, though not as eagerly as Shannara. These books are quick, enjoyable reads that have a more YA feel to them than their Shannara or Word & the Void counterparts.

Again, I wish there were half-star options because I’d love to give it a 3.5 out of 5 or something. But I definitely couldn’t justify a 4. If you like Terry Brooks, you’ll very likely enjoy Landover as well.

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Reading Progress

September 10, 2010 – Shelved
May 16, 2011 – Started Reading
May 22, 2011 –
0.0% "Finished Book One: Magic Kingdom for Sale: Sold! Onto Book Two."
May 26, 2011 –
June 2, 2011 –
62.0% "Almost done with Book 2."
June 5, 2011 –
70.0% "Onto Book 3: Wizard At Large"
June 7, 2011 –
June 9, 2011 –
91.0% "On Book 3: Chapter named "Snatch". The teenage boy that still lives within me snickered. -shrugs- What can I say?"
June 10, 2011 –
page 736
June 10, 2011 – Finished Reading

Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Natasha (new)

Natasha sounds really interesting... looking forward to hearing what you think!

Dusty Craine Natasha wrote: "sounds really interesting... looking forward to hearing what you think!"

Oh, I absolutely will. I try to write reviews. This might be more difficult with it being 3 books. It's hard to remember what was in one or the other. But I like Terry Brooks writing anyhow. I've enjoyed it so far.

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