Ryan's Reviews > Enchanters' End Game

Enchanters' End Game by David Eddings
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's review
Jun 24, 2008

it was ok
bookshelves: fantasy

** spoiler alert ** I hadn't read any David Eddings before this series. I had heard about him here and there, primarily from one friend I knew in the dorm back in college. A few months ago I was looking for some good fantasy pulp to keep my brain occupied as I tried to fall asleep. I was at Half-Price Books and saw this series (there are a LOT of Eddings books at Half-Price). I bought the first in the series Pawn of Prophecy and enjoyed it. Now, let me be a little more clear about that.

I enjoyed it, but it's extremely typical fantasy. That is, it's intensely derivative of J.R.R. Tolkien--there's an old wizard who leads the way in a fight against a supernatural bad guy, an innocent young hero, a magical relic that will defeat the bad guy, and a collection of contrasting heroes is assembled that journeys across the world on a quest to defeat the bad guy. (I know, Tolkien is derivative of things before him as well.) The characters aren't very developed. Etc. So, I enjoyed it because I was actually looking for something fairly mindless.

I went back to Half-Price and bought the whole series, you know, for the colossal sum of about eight bucks. I finally got through it. It wasn't terribly compelling, but it was somewhat, and I was apparently compelled enough to read five books. I think I mostly just wanted to know how it ended. I'll give you one guess. Yeah, that's right. The ending also came quite suddenly after a five book lead-up, and was also quite typical--the bad guy and the good guy, each with their respective magical weapons, grow to giant size and duke it out, and the good guy's sword-infused-with-magical-relic shoots lightning into the bad guy!

It's interesting...I've seen other folk's reviews and I imagine if Eddings had been the first fantasy genre fiction I had read I would have a much deeper appreciation for him, so I respect that others do. (Believe me, I'm a freak about Tolkien.) But I'm almost 40-years-old now, and I read The Hobbit when I was seven. In the intervening thirty-two years I've read a lot of fantasy, and a lot of literature, and even obtained a degree in the stuff, and it takes a lot to impress me. (Please send me your recommendations, by the way.)

So, bottom line, if you're a young fantasy fan, or just really like the genre, I'd say give the first book a shot and see what you think. If you're a seasoned fantasy fan I'd have to say it's not worth the time. There's nothing particularly new or interesting here. It's very typical of the genre.
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Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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message 1: by Lester (new)

Lester Good to see someone who reads a lot of different genres but you obviously have a penchant for Fantasy (I hate that word but what can you do) Anyway I would reccommend that you read at least one David Gemmell - Legend or Waylander - Very simple plots but it's good to have a fantasy story that's just one novel long for a change. Be interesting to read what you think.

Ryan Thanks for the recommendation Lester. I'll give it a shot!

Harold Ogle There're two things that make the series stand out so much for me, and both are very distinct from Tolkein: the characterizations, and, in this last book, as the tactical detail of the war. It's a huge cast of characters, and each character has been given a distinct and entertaining personality, which is very rare in high fantasy. AS comparison, Tolkein's Fellowship is composed of characters with all extremely similar personalities. Tolkein does a fair job of presenting the strategy of the War of the Ring, but most of the action is told from the point of view of the individuals in the action, rather than the tactical flow of the battles. I was quite pleasantly surprised in reading this last book to see how much tactical detail was provided; to me, it reads much more like military SF than typical high fantasy...with a large cast of distinct characters.

Todd Have you been reading the exciting new additions to the genre? Abercombie, Rothfuss, Sanderson?

Mahfuz tyr robin hobb

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