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The Elfstones Of Shannara

The Elfstones Of Shannara - Terry Brooks An ancient tree created by elves who lost magic of that caliber a long time ago for the purpose of containing a great evil is dying. The said evil is about to escape with some of the most powerful guys already walking among population of Four Lands. Only Allanon knows the full extent of the problem, but even the last surviving druid cannot be at two places at the same time, so he must ask unlikely heroes for help - including Wil Ohmsford, the grandson of Shea Ohmsford from the first book.

This book feels like Terry Brooks finally found his own voice as it is much further from Tolkien's writings in structure, plot, and characters. Something else I noticed: he is not shy of killing off characters - not to the extent of what [a:George R.R. Martin|346732|George R.R. Martin|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/authors/1351944410p2/346732.jpg] does, but in his case the killings start literally in the first pages of the book. It is also darker than both the first one and the whole Lord of the Rings trilogy.

The characters in this book is interesting, or in case of the ones from the previous one (Allanon) are more interesting and flashed out. We have the druid's POV which really helps to understand his motives and makes him more human than countless wise wizards from other fantasy novels who never bother showing their motives to mere mortals - including the readers.

Somebody already mentioned that the original trilogy must be judged after at least the second book, and I completely agree with this. The book is not perfect by any means, but it does deserve the status of being classic fantasy: 4 very solid stars.