The Measure of the Magic (Legends of Shannara Series #2)

The Measure of the Magic (Legends of Shannara Series #2)

by Terry Brooks

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For five hundred years, the survivors of the Great Wars lived peacefully in a valley sanctuary shielded by powerful magic from the dangerous outside world. But the enchanted barriers have crumbled, and the threat of annihilation looms large once more. As he lay dying, Sider Ament, bearer of the last black staff and protector of the valley, gave stewardship of the powerful talisman to the young Tracker Panterra Qu. Now the newly anointed Knight of the Word must take up the battle against evil wherever it threatens: from without, where an army of bloodthirsty Trolls is massing for invasion; and from within, where the Elf king of Arborlon has been murdered, his daughter stands accused, and a heinous conspiracy is poised to subjugate the kingdom. But even these affairs will pale beside the most harrowing menace Panterra is destined to confront—a nameless, merciless agent of darkness on a relentless mission: to claim the last black staff . . . and the life of whoever wields it.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345484222
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 07/31/2012
Series: Legends of Shannara Series , #2
Pages: 480
Sales rank: 127,530
Product dimensions: 4.14(w) x 6.90(h) x 1.05(d)

About the Author

Terry Brooks has thrilled readers for decades with his powers of imagination and storytelling. He is the author of more than thirty books, most of which have been New York Times bestsellers. He lives with his wife, Judine, in the Pacific Northwest.


Pacific Northwest and Hawaii

Date of Birth:

January 8, 1944

Place of Birth:

Sterling, Illinois


B.A. in English, Hamilton College, 1966; J.D., Washington and Lee University

Read an Excerpt

Humming tunelessly, the ragpicker walked the barren, empty wasteland in the aftermath of the rainstorm.  The skies were still dark with clouds and the earth was sodden and slick with surface water, but none of that mattered to him.  Others might prefer the sun and blue skies and the feel of hard, dry earth beneath their feet.  Others might revel in the brightness and the warmth.  But life was created in the darkness and damp of the womb, and the ragpicker took considerable comfort in knowing that procreation was instinctual and needed nothing of the face of nature’s disposition that he liked the least.

He was an odd looking fellow, an unprepossessing, almost comical tatterdemalion.  He was tall and whipcord thin, and he walked like one of those of those long-legged water birds.  Dressed in dark clothes that had seen much better days, he tended to blend in nicely with the mostly colorless landscape he traveled.  He carried his rags and scraps of cloth in a frayed patchwork bag slung over one shoulder, the bag bursting at the seams with its load, looking very much as if it would rip apart completely with each fresh step its bearer took.  A pair of scuffed leather boots completed the ensemble, scavenged from a dead man some years back, but still holding up quite nicely.

Everything about the ragpicker suggested that he was harmless.  Everything marked him as easy prey in a world where predators dominated the remnants of a decimated population.  He knew how he looked to the things that were always hunting.  He knew what they thought when they saw him coming.  But that was all right.  He didn’t mind.  He had stayed alive this long by keeping his head down and staying out of harm’s way.  People like him, they didn’t get noticed.  The trick was in not doing anything to call attention to yourself.

So he tried hard to give the clear and unmistakable impression that he was nothing but a poor wanderer who wanted to be left alone, but you didn’t always get what you wanted in this world.  Even now, other eyes were already sizing him up.  He could feel them doing so, several pairs in several different places.  But those eyes that belonged to the animals – the things that the poisons and chemicals had turned into mutants – were already turning away.  Their instincts were sharper, more finely tuned, and they could sense when something wasn’t right.  Given the choice, they would almost always back away.

It was the eyes of the human freaks that stayed fixed on him, eyes that lacked the necessary awareness to judge him properly.  These were the predators that seldom sensed the danger and so almost never turned away.  Two were studying him now, deciding whether or not to confront him.  He sighed.  He would try to avoid them, of course.  He would try to make himself seem not worth the trouble.  But, again, you didn’t always get what you wanted.

He breathed in the cool, damp air, absorbing the taste of the rain’s aftermath on his tongue, of the stirring of stagnation and sickness generated by the pounding of the sudden rain, of the smells of raw earth and decay, the whole of it marvelously welcome.  Sometimes, when he was alone, he could pretend he was the only one left in the world.  He could pretend that what remained of the world was his and his alone.  He could think of it all as his private preserve, his special place, and imagine that he was all that was left and everything belonged to him.

He could pretend that nothing would ever bother him again.

His humming dropped away, changing to a little song:
Ragpicker, ragpicker, what you gonna do.
When the hunters are hunting and they’re for hunting you.
Ragpicker, ragpicker, just stay low.
If you don’t draw attention they might let you go.

He hummed a few more bars, wondering if he had gotten past the predators.  He was thinking it was almost time to stop and have something to drink and eat.  But that would have to wait.  He sighed, his lean, sharp-featured face wreathed in a tight smile that caused the muscles of his jaw to stand out like cords.
Ragpicker, ragpicker, you’re all alone.
The hunters that are hunting want to pick your bones.
Ragpicker, ragpicker, just walk on.
If you wait them out they will soon be gone.

He crossed a meadow, a small stream filled with muddy water, a rocky flat in which tiny purple flowers were blooming and a withered woods in which a handful of poplars grew sparse and separate as if strangers to each other.  Ahead, there was movement in a rugged mass of boulders that formed the threshold to foothills leading up to the next chain of mountains, a high and wild and dominant presence.  He registered the movement, ignored it.  Those who had been watching him were still there and growing restless; he must skirt their hiding place and hope they were distracted by other possibilities.  But there didn’t appear to be anyone else out here other than himself, and he was afraid that they would come after him just because they were bored.
He continued on furtively, still humming softly.

Daylight leached away as the clouds began to thicken anew.  It might actually rain some more, he decided.  He glanced at the skies in all four directions, noting the movement of the clouds and the shifting of their shadows against the earth.  Yes, more rain coming.  Better that he find shelter soon.

He stalked up the slope into the rocks, his long thin legs stretching out, meandering here and there as if searching for the best way through, trying to move away from the watchers, trying to pretend he was heedless of them, that he knew nothing of them and they, in turn, should not want to bother with him.

But, suddenly, his worst fears were realized and just like that they were upon him.

They came out of the rocks, having moved from their previous hiding place, two shaggy-haired, ragged men, one large and one small, both carrying blades and clubs.  One was blind in one eye and the other limped badly.  They had seen hard times, the ragpicker thought, and they would not be likely to have seen much charity and therefore not much inclined to dispense any.  He stood where he was and waited on them patiently, knowing that flight was useless.

“You,” one-eye said, pointing a knife at him.  “What you got in that bag of yours?”

The ragpicker shrugged.  “Rags.  I collect them and barter for food and drink.  It’s what I do.”

“You got something more than that, I’d guess,” the second man, the larger of the two, the limper, said.  “Better show us what you got.”

The ragpicker hesitated, and then dumped everything on the ground, his entire collection of brightly colored scarves and bits of cloth, a few whole pieces of shirts and coats, a hat or two, some boots.  Everything he had managed to find in his travels of late that he hadn’t bargained away with the Trolls or such.

“That’s crap!” snarled one eye, thrusting his knife at the ragpicker, nearly pricking him with the tip.  “You got to do better than that!  You got to give us something of worth!”

“You got coin?” demanded the other.

Hopeless, the ragpicker thought.  No one had coin anymore and even if they did it was valueless.  Gold or silver, maybe.  A good weapon, especially one of the old automatics from the days of the Great Wars, would have meant something, would have been barter material.  But no one had coins.

“Don’t have any,” he said, backing away a step.  “Can I pick up my rags?”

One-eye stepped forward and ground the colored cloth into the ground with the heel of his boot.  “That’s what I think of your rags.  Now watch and see what I’m gonna do to you!”

The ragpicker backed away another step.  “Please, I don’t have anything to give you.  I just want you to let me pass.  I’m not worth your trouble.  Really.”

“You ain’t worth much, that’s for sure,” said the one who limped.  “But that don’t mean you get to go through here free.  This is our territory and no one passes without they make some payment to us!”

The two men came forward again, a step at a time, spreading out just a little to hem the ragpicker in, to keep him from making an attempt to get around them.  As if such a thing were possible, the ragpicker thought, given his age and condition and clear lack of athletic ability.  Did he look like he could get past them if he tried?  Did he look as if he could do anything?

“I don’t think this is a good idea,” he said suddenly, stopping short in his retreat.

“You might not fully understand what it is that you are doing.”

The predators stopped and stared at him, not quite believing what they were hearing.  “You don’t think it’s a good idea?” said the one that limped.  “Is that what you said, you skinny old rat?”

The ragpicker shook his head.  “It always comes down to this.  I don’t understand it.  Let me ask you something.  Do you know of a man who carries a black staff?”

The two exchanged a quick look.  “Who is he?” asked one-eye.  “Why would we know him?”

The ragpicker sighed.  “I don’t know that you do.  Probably you don’t.  But he would be someone who had real coin on him, should you know where to find him.  You don’t, do you?”

“Naw, don’t know anyone like that,” snarled one-eye.  He glanced at his companion.

“C’mon, let’s see what he’s hiding in that sack.”

They came at the ragpicker with their blades held ready, stuffing the clubs in their belts.  They were hunched forward slightly in preparation for getting past whatever defenses the scarecrow intended to offer, the blades held out in front of them.  The ragpicker stood his ground, no longer backing up, no longer looking as if he intended to try to escape.  In fact, he didn’t look quite the same man at all.  The change was subtle and hard to identify, but it was evident that something was different about him.  It was in his eyes as much as anywhere, in a gleam of madness that was bright and certain.  But it was in his stance, as well.  Before, he had looked like a frightened victim, someone who knew that he stood no chance at all against men like these.  Now, he had the appearance of someone who had taken control of matters in spite of his apparent inability to do so, and his two attackers didn’t like it.

But that didn’t stop them, of course.  Men of this sort were never stopped by what they couldn’t understand, only by what was bigger and stronger and better armed.  The ragpicker was none of these.  He was just an unlucky fool trying to be something he wasn’t, making a last ditch effort to hang onto his life.

One-eye struck first, his blade coming in low and swift towards the ragpicker’s belly.  The second man was only a step behind, striking out in a wild slash aimed at his victim’s exposed neck.  Neither blow reached its intended mark.  The ragpicker never seemed to move, but suddenly he had hold of both wrists, bony fingers locking on flesh and bone and squeezing until his attackers cried out in pain, dropped their weapons and sank to their knees in shock, struggling to break free.  But the ragpicker had no intention of releasing them.  He just held them where they were, on their knees before him, moaning and writhing, studying their agonized expressions.
“You shouldn’t make assumptions about people,” he lectured them, bending close enough that they could see the crimson glow in his eyes, a gleam of bloodlust and rage.  “You shouldn’t be like that.”

His hands tightened further, and smoke rose through his fingers where they gripped the men’s wrists.  Now the attackers were howling and screaming in agony as their imprisoned wrists and hands turned black and charred, burned from the inside out.
The ragpicker released them then and let them drop to the ground in huddled balls of quaking, blubbering despair, cradling their ruined arms, stricken by what had been done to them.

“You’ve ruined such a lovely day, too,” the ragpicker admonished.  “All I wanted was to be left alone to enjoy it, and now this.  You really are pigs of the worst sort, and pigs deserve to be roasted and eaten!”

They cried out anew at this and attempt to crawl away, but he was on them much too quickly, seizing their heads and holding them fast.  Smoke leaked from between his clutching fingers, rising from their heads in spiraling wisps, and the men jerked and writhed in response.

“How does that feel?” the ragpicker wanted to know.  “Can you tell what’s happening to you?  I’m cooking your brains, in case you’ve failed to recognize what you are experiencing.  Doesn’t feel very good, does it?”

It was a rhetorical question, which was just as well because neither man could manage any kind of intelligible answer.  All they could do was hang suspended from the ragpicker’s killing fingers until their brains were turned to mush and they were dead.
The ragpicker let them drop.  He thought about eating them, but the idea was too distasteful to consider seriously.  They were vermin, and he didn’t eat vermin.  So he stripped them of their clothing, taking small items for his collection, scraps of cloth from each man that would remind him later of who they had been, and left them for scavengers he knew would not be picky.  He gathered up his soiled rags from the earth into which they had been ground, brushed them off as best he could and returned them his carry bag.  When everything was in place, he gave the dead men a final glance and started off once more.
Bones of the dead left lying on the ground.
One more day and they will never be found.
Ragpicker, ragpicker, you never know
There are rags to be found wherever you go.

He sang it softly, repeated it a few times for emphasis, rearranging the words, and then went quiet.  An interesting diversion, but massively unproductive.  He had hoped the two creatures might have information about the man with the black staff, but they had disappointed him.  So he would have to continue the search without any useful information to aid him.  All he knew was what he sensed, and what he sensed would have to be enough for now.

The man he sought was somewhere close, probably somewhere up in those mountains he was walking towards.  So eventually he would find him.

The ragpicker allowed himself a small smile.  There was no hurry.  Time was something he had as much of as he needed.

Time didn’t really matter when you were a demon.

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Measure of the Magic 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 159 reviews.
david meyers More than 1 year ago
Starting with "sword of shanara" all the way to this one. Great stories. I have read them all. Each story is unique and stands on its own. But to really enjoy the complete works of Mr. Brooks. Start at the begining with "sword of shanara" and read your way through. It all comes full circle.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Entertaining and true to the storyline. Lots of depth to the characters. Exciting and not always predictable in the way you think. One of my favorite authors and series. Good bridge to closing out the old world and begining the world of Shannarah.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Nuff said
Reading_Rogue More than 1 year ago
The Sword of Shanarra was one of the first fantasy books I every read. Since then Terry Brooks has, by far, been one of my favorite authors. This installment in the series does not disappoint. Can't wait for the next book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Terry Brooks has once again written an amazing novel!! I love Terry Brooks and have been reading him for over 30 years at least. This story continues on with The Man with the Staff, only this time the entire valley is in trouble. You also find out more about the elusive Blue Elf Stones. Trouble is coming and so are big changes for the valley. This one is definitely another one of Terry's great stories. A good book that you read and cannot stop! Terry Brooks at his best!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a great read! On par with most of Mr. Brooks' later books, it is full of adventure, magic, surprises, and heartache. The ending left more questions than his last trilogy, but it just makes me want to get into the next book in the series that much sooner. 8/21/12 cannot get here fast enough!!!
SonicQuack on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Brooks was right in creating a duology to complete this phase of Shannara's history, which keeps it tight and controlled. The story is really a series of chase scenes, for there very few action orientated scenes which aren't as a result of the hunter and hunted meeting. Of course it's not as linear as that and there's a new villain in the mix to ramp up the danger, with which Brooks succeeds. The 'ragpicker' is a malevolent and wise creation, sowing disharmony and disrupting relationships in a manner akin to the horror wrought in Stephen King fiction. The chases take the characters in to new territory keeping the story fresh and unpredictable. The characters are well developed and there is a clear feeling of good versus evil, with a required wild-card to keep the intrigue flowing. A good entry in the series where the characters are as important as the plot.
atwalter on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Sword of Shannara was the book that introduced me to the fantasy genre, and I've been in love ever since. In The Measure of Magic Terry Brooks continues in the world that was masterfully blended with his Word and Void series. While I do not like the more recent Shannara books as much as I enjoyed the originals, they never leave me unsatisfied. The character development and the plot pacing of the story was fantastic. If I had to, however, I would have gone back and re-read a great of the series leading up to this because I feel as though it would have furthered my enjoyment. That said, while not great, this book was a solid and thoroughly entertaining read.
puttocklibrary on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
An excellent continuation of the "Legends of Shannara" series. It's so much fun to see the Shannara we first knew beginning to form, but at the same time, be on the edge of our seat about the fate of our current cast of characters. Be prepared for a few surprises in this volume!
kmaziarz on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The second half of the story begun in "Bearers of the Black Staff" picks up where it left off. An army of vicious, murderous Trolls seeks a way into the small valley that has sheltered humanity for 500 years. The last Knight of the Word has died and passed his staff on to a young human Tracker who reluctantly takes up his role. Helping and protecting him is his best friend, a young girl who chooses to pay a terrible personal price in exchange for reliable magic to aid her friend...who, though he does not know it, is being stalked by one of the last demons from the old world, a relentless and powerful creature with the cunning of centuries. Meanwhile, the impulsive Princess of the Elves, falsely accused of murdering her father, must find a way to free herself and use the blue Elfstones to save her people and her human allies from the Troll army.As with "Bearers of the Black Staff," the social commentary directed at the flaws of organized religion, is heavy-handed and unsubtle, a flaw I do not remember from early Shannara titles. However, the plot is fast-moving and the characters have their appeal. This book is perhaps more suited for younger readers as it lacks anything resembling layers of moral complexity, but should still be of interest to long-time fans of the series.
Lobstersurvivor on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I received an advanced reading copy in return for this review. Even If i didn't get an ARC I would still have read and reviewed this book. Terry Brooks in a generations writer. It is amazing how he continues his stories hundreds of years after the last series ends. The Measure of Magic is intriguing and fast paced. The characters are interesting and have depth. The story will continue I'm sure in the next book, but each book stands on its own. Terry has a great way of writing stories that pertain to my life. I learn so much from his stories about humanity and my inner soul. When reading his books, i become the characters in the stories.
msellers on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Measure of the Magic by Terry Brooks is a continuation from The Bearer of the Black Staff and it continues the adventures of Panterra Qu and Prue Liss. Sider Ament is dead and Prue is somewhere outside the valley trying to keep the Trolls from recapturing her. She¿s in an unfamiliar place and Deladion Inch is dead and can no longer help her. The Trolls have her hideout surrounded, how is she ever going to get out of there and make her way back to the valley and Pan? Meanwhile Pan is dealing with his own problems. He is worried about Prue but he has to find Arik Siq and keep him from showing the rest of the Trolls how to get into the valley. Will he take the Black Staff as Sider asked him to do? Skeal Eile is doing everything in his power to discount the danger and take over as leader of not only Glenske Wood but everyone in the valley. The Elves are working on protecting the valley from access through Aphalion Pass. Declan Pass is no longer protected. Throw in the demon who shows up and you have lots of adventure. The demon wants the bearer of the black staff. He makes his way into the valley and finds Skeal Eile. Phryne, it turns out, is correct about the new Queen of the Elves who also ends up hooking up with Skeal Eile because he promises she will rule over the Elves. All he wants, he assures her, is access to the Elves to try to bring them into his fold as Children of the Hawk.I read the original Sword of Shannara Trilogy way back in the 80¿s but have not read any of the other Shannara books between then and now. Upon winning a review copy of The Measure of the Magic, I purchased the Bearer of the Black Staff because I didn¿t want to read this book without reading it first so I have spent the last couple weeks reading both books. This is such an exciting story that I found myself not wanting to put the book down for anything and reading every spare moment I¿ve been able to. The book ended in such a way as to appear there will be a continuation and so I look forward to the next installment in the story. I will also need to go back and re-read the Sword of Shannara Trilogy and then read the other Shannara novels so I can get caught up.
RandyHarper on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Like Tolkien and McCaffrey who have introduced us to other worlds, Terry Brooks has, like his world of Shannara, done the same thing with this duology of Bearers of the Black staff and The Measure of the Magic. This second book continues with the bearer of the black staff, the elves, and trackers. Although I felt a little rushed through the story and thought that there was more beneath the surface of what I was reading, Mr Brooks was able to enthrall me into a three day read of the book. The basic story was fresh enough that I didn't feel like I was reading a synopsis of someone else's work, and the side story lines could have had books in their own right. An absolute must read if your are the least bit of a Terry Brooks fan or fantasy lover. My earnest hope is that this really is NOT the end of the line for this set. I want to know who will rule the elves, what will happen to the elf stones and if Panterra will learn to control the staff. Where is the boy that led the people into the valley? Where are the rest of the staffs and will the Trolls really stay away from this fragile group of people? Can we learn more about the Elven land of the dead and how much, if any, other interaction do they have with the land of the living? If you have read the the first of this set, get The Measure of the Magic. If you haven't read either, what are you waiting for!
arelenriel on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was everything one can expect out of a Shanarra novel, fantasy, romance, epic adventure, and the good guy always wins. That being said after 20 books the plot storyline and repetitive characters have grown a little bit old. Don't get me wrong, Brooks is an excellent writer, it is just he seems very unwilling to move outside a specific comfort zone with his material which has turned a rather enjoyable series into a rather boring read, in spite of a well developed plot, characters and background. Overall I would recommend this to fans of Brooks but if you are just a general reader of the fantasy genre don't bother,
DonnerLibrary on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Measure of the Magic picks up right where Bearers of the Black Staff left off. There is no recap of events that took place in that book so it is best to read the two back to back. The series is a good read but not my favorite of the Shannara stories.
randirousseau on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I have followed the books of the world of Shannara since I was a kid, starting with Shea, Flick and Alanon all the way through. I found myself at this book and, while I enjoyed it, I had a hard time getting past the feeling that the story has finally gotten, well, tired. Like Tolkein, Brooks' books have been richly tiered and epic - but this has been winding down the last few.
CharlieCascino on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I have read every Shannara book Terry Brooks has written. With the Bearer of the Black Staff, we found out what happened to to people Hawk saved at the end of the Elves of Cintra. The Measure of the Magic continues this story. Terry Brooks never fails to create real, honest, well-developed characters. This book pits them against treachery from both inside and out, with an army threatening, and within, betrayal by power hungry antagonists. The choices our heroes make, their giving of themselves, is not seen as the hokey, cheesy, fantasy-good-guy stuff that you see so often. We are with them when they choose their people over themselves, and we feel their heartbreak as a consequence.I loved this book, and I really hope Terry Brooks continues to write more within this beautiful world he has created.
elric17 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Like all Shannara books an enjoyable tale in a enjoyable universe. It quite nicely tied up all of the plot threads from Black Staff, however, I would hope there are future adventures for Qu, as he is a character, i quite enjoy.
phoenixcomet on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Book 2 in the Legends of Shannara series where Panterra Qu has assumed carrying the black staff of Sider Ament and all the responsibility that goes with the staff and Prue Liss makes a huge sacrifice to save Pan's life. More characters that I like die. Happily, some that deserve to die, do. Decent fantasy fiction.
kcpavlik on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
To be honest I was slightly disappointed with this book. It felt to me that instead of ending this mini-series with two books it really needed to be a trilogy. There were so many different story lines and so much side political intrigue that it would have been more fulfilling to either take out those side stories or to spend more time to wrap them up. things felt a bit abrupt that way it was written. The other disappointment was that this book seemed to totally disreguard how The Gypsy Morph ended. *Spoiler Alert* In the end of gypsy morph Hawk becomes a normal person and goes back into the valley to live a normal life... so the author couldn't even hint at how this ended up for him... if his decendents ended up being anyone important... It was a bit of a let down. So yeah, still an enjoyable read but not exactly one of my favorites in the Shannara universe.
_Lily_ on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
For five hundred years, the survivors of the Great Wars lived peacefully in a valley sanctuary shielded by powerful magic from the blighted and dangerous outside world. But the enchanted barriers have crumbled, the borders have been breached by predators, and the threat of annihilation looms large once more. Sider Ament, bearer of the last black staff and its profound power, devoted his life to protecting the valley and its inhabitants¿and, in his final moments, gave stewardship of the black staff to the young tracker Panterra Qu. Now the newly anointed Knight of the Word must take up the battle against evil wherever it threatens: from without, where an army of bloodthirsty trolls is massing for invasion; and from within, where the Elf king of Arborlon has been murdered, his daughter, Princess Phryne Amarantyne, stands accused, and a heinous conspiracy is poised to subjugate the kingdom. But even these will pale beside the most harrowing menace Panterra is destined to confront¿a nameless, merciless figure who wanders the devastated land on a relentless mission: to claim the last black staff . . . and the life of he who wields it. (Synopsis provided by goodreads)This book was good, but not great. I found myself to be a bit let down the ending felt weak, which surprised me as Brooks is a very gifted story teller. It could be because this is book 2 of I believe 3 a book series, I will still pick up the next book though.I do wish that this book had more information on the characters ect in it, Brooks normally has loads of information and shows the inter workings of his world.There were some great action scenes and the dialog was great as usual. I would still recommend this to other Brooks fans, but with a warning that Brooks now has cliff hanger endings and it seems his style is changing.It was still a good read though. * Hardcover: 400 pages * Publisher: Del Rey; First Edition edition (August 23, 2011) * Author: Terry Brooks * Cover art: I really like it. * Over all rating: *** out of 5 stars * Obtained: Won from goodreads first reads.
bobwaldo1 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
In typical Brooks fashion, this story is well thought out, well rounded, and flowing. There are threads that link the beginning of the book to the end, and themes that carry on throughout.However, unlike some of his other books, this story is very slow throughout most of it's journey. The pace picks up at the important moments, but the prose doesn't move as well during this book as during others.However, an immensly enjoyable read, and one that hints very strongly at further books to come.
gimble on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Having dipped in and out of the world of Shannara series, going back before the start of the first books was interesting experience. I will have to say that Terry Brooks did seem to obsess with characters names that started with P, but other than that this was a terrific read. The story outlines one of the first adventures of the blue elf stones and the one of black staffs after the devastating war that almost brought an end to the human race. I did find a few places in the book where characters seemed to have knowledge that was not available to them, but these where minor and did not effect the over all story. If you did not want to commit yourself to an entire series this book stands very well on its own.
goth_marionette on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I have been a fan of Terry Brooks since a high school teacher introduced me to the Shannara series. I was excited to read this latest book but I must admit that I feel the series is getting a bit tired. His books are still enjoyable but a bit overplayed. If you are a Brooks fan then pick up the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago