The Sword of Truth

Terry Goodkind
Series Created by TERRY GOODKIND

REVIEWS
SPOILER WARNING!
Most cover images are scans of my personal copies. Smaller cover images are from the Author's Official Website. TV Series photo from the Official TV Series Website.
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0. Novella: DEBT OF BONES published in LENGENDS Vol 2 (1998)     [****]

This is a prequel story about a younger First Wizard Zorander during the Great War against Panis Rahl. It was evidently revised and reprinted later on it's own? I have not read the newer version and wonder how it changed ...

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1. WIZARD'S FIRST RULE (1994)     [*****]

This is the first and best of the Sword of Truth Series which introduces the characters and starts them off on their great adventures.

Richard Cypher is a simple woods guide when he happens across the beautiful Kahlan Amnell running for her life from a quad of soldiers. He comes to her rescue and they become fast friends, but she is much more than she seems and, as it turns out, so is Richard. A vile villain named Darken Rahl has put into play a great magic that can destroy the entire world – as vile villains are wont to do, for some reason – and the only hope to stop him is one named in prophecy (endless prophecies) …. Kahlan is the last Confessor (you’ll just have to read the book yourself to discover what that means) and she has traveled to Westland in search of The First Wizard so that a true Seeker can be named. Richard’s good friend Zedd turns out to be the Wizard in question, and he names Richard as The Seeker of Truth, bestowing on him the wondrous Sword of Truth, which is a weapon of great magic. And thus begins the adventure to stop the evil Darken Rahl.

There is a LOT of violence in this, including some really graphic bondage and torture, which doesn’t really bother me. What bothered me was the violence against children. I kind of think the depth of Darken Rahl’s depravity could have been demonstrated without the torture and mutilation of small children. I mean, at least Rahl had a magical reason for killing (and eating) kids – his second in command just liked to rape and mutilate little boys – it’s quite disturbing, which, I would imagine, was the whole point.

Anyway, we meet some interesting characters along the way who follow Richard on his journey of love, betrayal, despair and ultimate triumph and hey, there’s even a dragon – what’s not to love?

There is a bit of sermonizing – basically railing against the evils of socialism, but it is in context and doesn’t detract from the story. Unfortunately, as the series goes on, the sermonizing increases and the story evaporates, but this one is a great stand-alone fantasy story and I highly recommend it.


Wizard’s First Rule: People are stupid and can believe any lie if they want it to be true or if they fear it may be true.
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2. STONE OF TEARS (1995)     [****]

The second book in the Sword of Truth series is pretty exciting too. If you haven’t read Wizard’s First Rule yet and don’t want to ruin any surprises, don’t read any more of this, because there are major SPOILERS for Book 1 here.

Richard and Kahlan are off with The Mudd People to get married, while Zedd and Chase and Rachel are still back at the People’s Palace in D’Hara. Richard is suffering from crippling headaches because, as it turns out, he has the gift of magic. Richard doesn’t know it yet, but we found out at the end of the last book that Zedd is actually his grandfather and Darken Rahl was actually Richard’s biological father, so Richard has the gift from both sides of his blood line. He will come to realize that he is actually one powerful SOB, but for now, he vehemently denies having the gift at all – he hates magic and wants nothing to do with it, but if he doesn’t learn to control it, it will kill him with the headaches.

And that’s where the Sisters of the Light come in. They’re basically nuns – well, sorceress nuns. They feel it is their duty to train young wizards and they use a collar to control them. Remember the graphic bondage and torture I mentioned in the first book? Well Denna, a Mord-Sith, kept Richard in a collar with a leash while she tortured him and he has since sworn never to wear a collar again – for ANY reason, so he’s not going with the Sisters. Not until Kahlan abuses him and forces him to put the collar on. She thinks she is saving his life, though, in truth, a few minutes with Zedd would have cured the headaches, but as it happens, it might be a good thing that he goes with Sister Verna because he does learn a thing or two at the Palace of the Prophets – about his gift and about himself, which he really needs to know because the veil between the world of the living and the world of the dead was torn when Darken Rahl opened the magic box that killed him and the Stone of Tears is in this world. Yeah, it’s a convoluted story that we mostly unravel trough snippets of irritating prophecies, but once again, Richard is the ONLY one who can repair the veil – but only if this and this and this and that happens and ARGH! Like I said, convoluted, but some great new characters are introduced and our old friends are still around and it’s exciting enough to get through the more pedantic stuff about the prophecies and all.

The violence level is still pretty high – the Imperial Order (the new bad guys since Darken Rahl’s demise) are a pretty reprehensible bunch. They completely destroy a capital city where they repeatedly rape and then butcher the women after torturing and mutilating the men and children – it’s pretty graphic, though only in the aftermath – we see the results, not the actual actions. Still, the battle that follows is not pretty either – especially as it is Kahlan who leads the vengeance charge.


Wizard’s Second Rule: The greatest harm can result from the best intentions.
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3. BLOOD OF THE FOLD (1996)     [***½]

Once again, this review contains spoilers for the previous books, so beware.

Book 3 begins where Book 2 left off, with the 5 or 6 Sisters of the Dark who had escaped from the Palace of the Prophets being tormented by the Emperor Jagang of The Imperial Order. We heard about the Emperor in the last book, but we don’t actually meet him until about half way through this one. He’s a piece of work. He’s a Dream Walker, which means he can somehow attack you while you sleep. Once he gets into your mind, he can control you completely – especially if you have the gift of magic. He’s what we would commonly call a barbarian bastard. It is, however, hard to figure out sometimes just what side the author is on – Jagang wants to eradicate all magic – destroy the old religion of magic, as it were – and thus usher in the Age of Man. Now, I guess this must have happened here some time, right? I mean, we don’t have magic in the world anymore, right? So, does magic really have to be destroyed for Man to reach his full potential as Jagang says? And if so, he sure does butcher a hell of a lot of innocent non-magical people to get his way. He’s a pig – using rape and torture to get his way, but sometimes it seems the author admires him. This seeming admiration becomes more obvious in later books, but for now, this one is pretty exciting and still story and character driven, so it’s easier to let the dogma slide.

The Blood of the Fold, for which this one is named, are another group trying to eradicate all things magic – they join forces with the Imperial Order. They are led by the Lord General Tobias Brogan who is a sanctimonious nut job who eventually declares … no, I should not spoil the surprise. Suffice to say that all the Blood of the Fold are despicable bastards who think they’re doing the Creator’s work when they torture, maim and mutilate people. Yeah, it has happened throughout history (remember The Crusades? The Spanish Inquisition? The Salem Witch Trials? Al Qaeda?), but being commonplace makes it no less disturbing.

Anyway, the end of Book 2 had Richard arriving at the Midlands Capital City of Aydindril only to be told Kahlan had been executed. First thing he did was slaughter the entire Midlands Council because they had sentenced her to be beheaded. He later figured out that everyone just believes The Mother Confessor is dead because Zedd cast a Death Spell on her, so she’s really okay. They are still separated, though, and it’s starting to get old at this point. Heck, through two books, they were only able to FINALLY consummate their relationship once at the end of Book 2 and only then in some weird ethereal plane between worlds. Seriously. They won’t find each other again until towards the end of this book.

When this book opens, Richard is preparing to go after her when his Gar pal Gratch arrives for a visit. Gars are huge furry beasts with leathery wings who eat people, but Richard befriended a poor orphaned little baby in the last book and he’s all grown up now – they’re fast friends. While they’re visiting, a bunch of Mriswith attack. Gratch and Richard make short work of them and Richard realizes Gratch can sense their presence too, just like him. He eventually sends Gratch off to find Kahlan and protect her from the Mriswith because he can’t leave Aydindril. In order to save the city from the Imperial Order, Richard has declared himself Master of D’Hara, taken command of the HUGE force of D’Haran troops in town and taken over control of the city. Richard’s ancestor Alric Rahl was a GENIUS and created a magic to combat the Dream Walkers – anyone who declares allegiance to the House of Rahl are protected from the Dream Walkers – Jagang can’t get into their heads, so when he takes command of the troops and they all declare their bond to him, they are all freed from the influence of Jagang. In order to save the Midlands from Jagang and the Order, he has also demanded the unconditional surrender of ALL lands of the Midlands to D’Hara. Yeah – he’s taking over control of the world! Someone has to, though, so may as well be Richard.

Meanwhile, Ann and Nathan were supposedly killed when the Sisters of the Dark attacked at the Palace of the Prophets and it’s a bit of a spoiler to reveal that they’re not dead, but you find out fairly soon in the book, so it’s not a HUGE spoiler. They are off trying to influence events down forks in the prophecies they want to happen – it’s a dangerous game. Nathan is entertaining, though – he’s a handful, but Ann kind of deserves the little digs from him, seeing as how she has kept him captive for almost a THOUSAND YEARS! He gets his own back, though, and then some. When Zedd is thrown into their midst, it is even more hilarious. These three, along with the three Mord-Sith, really save this book, in my opinion.

Still a high level of violence – no reason to expect otherwise now – but it’s more in passing. This is where the more obvious sermonizing begins in the series and it starts to get tedious, but I enjoyed this one anyway because of the humorous moments, as I mentioned above. The final scene is worth the tedium at the middle of the book and it was also fun learning about Richard’s totally cool ancestor Alric Rahl.

Oh yeah, the game of Ja’La is introduced in this book – it’s a very violent game created by Jagang to distract the people from his evil – whatever. I wonder what part the game will play in later books, if any …


Wizards Third Rule: Passion often rules reason.

The devotion to the Master Rahl as set down by Alric Rahl: “Master Rahl guide us. Master Rahl teach us. Master Rahl protect us. In your light we thrive. In your mercy we are sheltered. In your wisdom we are humbled. We live only to serve. Our lives are yours.”

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4. TEMPLE OF THE WINDS (1997)     [***]

This one has it’s moments – usually tear-jerking moments, but some humorous moments too, like Zedd and Ann acting like lunatics. Overall, it is starting to get annoying – the whole Richard and Kahlan are oh-so-madly in love but SOMEthing new keeps them constantly apart thing – Oh, my GOSH, let them get married already! Crimony, let them have sex, at least! They’ve been swearing they’re undying love ad nauseum through FOUR books – and these are all around 700 pages, folks – they’re not short stories! Man, and for crying out loud, let Zedd and Richard get back together already as well – Zedd hasn’t seen his grandson at ALL since Richard discovered the truth about his parentage and his magical ability – it is getting OLD! And seriously, how many times must I have to read about Richard’s raptor gaze and Drefen’s raptor stare – at least Nathan has a hawk-like glare instead, just to mix it up a bit – we get it, the Rahl’s have predatory glowers …

Nadine is an irritating little whore whom Shota sends to marry Richard, while Drefen, Richard’s newly discovered half brother, is a real piece of work in tight pants. But the book’s saving grace is Nathan and his new girlfriend Clarissa – they steal the book! Nathan Rahl really shows his true colors in this one – he shines and proves just how totally KEWL he really is. The whole concept of the Temple of the Winds is pretty lame, though, all things considered.

Okay, the story – back in Book 2, Richard destroyed the Towers of Perdition which separated the Old World from the New World. He had to do it in order to save the world – AGAIN, but in so doing, he opened the way for the full scale invasion of the New World by Emperor Jagang (aka the Dream Walker). Well, Jagang is wreaking havoc now and he starts by invoking a ‘double bind prophecy’ – I swear, poor Richard is at the center of half the bloody prophecies ever uttered! Jagang starts a plague. If Richard does nothing, he – along with everyone he loves and a very large percentage of the world (both Old and New) – will die. Richard is the only one (of course) who can stop it, but to do so, he must go to the Temple of the Winds, which means he will die. Either way, Jagang figures Richard will die – and with him, the protection of the Lord Rahl bond. Course, he didn’t reckon on Nathan Rahl getting involved – and therein lies the fun.

Shota, the Witch Woman, causes trouble by sending Nadine, an old ‘friend’ of Richard, to marry Richard. Then Drefen, Richard’s half brother, shows up and causes quite a stir. They’re both healers, though, and they help out with the plague. Zedd and Ann end up getting captured by natives in The Wilds and spend the whole book trying to get free. Nathan spends the whole book being Nathan and he is just so cool. Verna and Warren are trying to rescue some of her friends from Jagang, but Warren is on the verge of death from his gift, so that’s an added complication.

Anyway, what with the plague and all, there is plenty of death in this one (and the plague starts with the children, so be forewarned). In addition, there is a Jack the Ripper type killer on the loose as well, so lots of brutal torture, mutilation and murder too. Overall, the preaching is kept to a minimum, though, so that’s a plus.

I’m wondering what ever happened to Adie, the Bone Woman? Is she back in Galea with Kahlan’s sister and the Seer Jebra?


Wizard’s Fourth Rule: There is magic in forgiveness – magic to heal. In forgiveness you grant and more in that which you receive.
    [I'm not certain this is the 4th rule, as I didn't notice a Fourth Rule actually pointed out - this is something said by a wizard that sounded like it could be a rule, so I took it as one. If anyone knows what the fourth rule is really supposed to be, please let me know.]
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5. SOUL OF THE FIRE (1999)     [***]

Reechani, Sentrosi, Vasi – The Chimes are loose! Yeah, Kahlan inadvertently released them at the end of the last book in order to save Richard’s life. What are the Chimes, you ask? Good question. They’re weird, magical … things conjured from the Underworld. In addition to sucking all additive magic from the world, they also like to kill people. Random people – they lure you in and then drown you, burn you up or make you leap off tall cliffs. Oh, don’t try to make sense of it cuz there isn’t any – they’re magic and they’re set to destroy the world, that’s all you have to know. At least this book doesn’t involve any pesky prophecies and Richard isn’t touted as the ONLY one who can save the world. He is, actually, but that’s only because he’s the only War Wizard and his subtractive magic still works.

Anyway! Zedd is kind of irritating in this one – beginning with the lie he tells Richard at the start. That’s a bit of a spoiler, but come on, if you can’t see through the STUPID lie, you haven’t read the earlier books. Why the heck Richard falls for it, I don’t know, though I guess he has other things on his mind at the time.

Well, the book opens with the wedding – Yes, Richard and Kahlan are FINALLY husband and wife! But the celebration doesn’t last long because magic is failing and the Chimes must be banished. Zedd sends Richard on a pathetic mission back to the Wizard’s Keep where he’ll be safe (The Chimes can’t get him there because that’s where they were called forth – like I said, makes no sense, but there ya go). While magic has failed, Ann heads for Jagang’s camp to rescue the Sisters of the Light – that does NOT go well. Zedd tries to banish the chimes on his own, but THAT does not go well either.

Richard figures it all out, but spends most of the book trying to convince everyone else of the truth of things. I mean, what’s the deal? He is the SEEKER of TRUTH – doesn’t anyone remember that? Oh, he doesn’t have his sword with him – he had to leave that back at the Keep because they took the Sliph to the Mud People’s village to be married – so maybe that’s why everyone doubts him?

This book centers around a land known as Anderith and their founder, Joseph Ander – an ancient megalomaniacal wizard. Turns out, he’s the one who got rid of the Chimes way back when, so Richard just needs to figure out how he did it. The Anders are the ruling class while the Haken race has been horribly and completely brainwashed into believing they’re vile and evil and deserve to be little more than slaves. I kind of feel sorry for them. As for the Anders, don’t even waste any sympathy on them – they deserve everything they get.

The level of violence does NOT diminish with this installment. This one, in fact, gets even more brutal as, in addition to the usual Imperial Order rape/murder method of conquest, we have the chimes burning people alive and then several people in town are viciously attacked by large groups of men and this is told in pretty gory detail. A major character will fall victim to the gang attack.

Not sure what the title refers to – Soul of the Fire … The Chimes were invoked to save Richard, thus pledging his soul to them, so maybe that’s what it refers to. Still, that makes no sense either, does it? Why would the Chimes bother saving his life if they were only going to take his soul afterwards? It’s just getting harder to suspend my disbelief! The way the Hakens are treated in Anderith is really, really annoying too.


Wizard’s Fifth Rule: Mind what people do, not only what they say, for deeds will betray a lie.
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6. FAITH OF THE FALLEN (2000)     [***]

This is Richard speaking in chapter 2:

    “The only sovereign I can allow to rule me is reason. The first law of reason is this: what exists, exists; what is, is. From this irreducible, bedrock principle, all knowledge is built. This is the foundation from which life is embraced.
    “Reason is a choice. Wishes and whims are not facts, nor are they a means to discovering them. Reason is our only way of grasping reality – it’s our basic tool of survival. We are free to evade the effort of thinking, to reject reason, but we are not free to avoid the penalty of the abyss we refuse to see.
    “If I fail to use reason in this struggle, if I close my eyes to the realty of what is, in favor of what I would wish, then we will both die in this, and for nothing. We will be but two more among uncounted millions of nameless corpses beneath the gray, gloomy decay of mankind. In the darkness that will follow, our bones will be meaningless dust.”

It goes on. It went on for a few pages before this and another few after this, but the point is, coming from any number of other characters, this would seem par for the course of these novels, but from Richard? He doesn’t talk this way. Or, at least, he never did before. Now, he is suddenly a pedantic philosopher? The point he’s making may be perfectly valid, but the wording isn’t Richard’s – Richard does NOT talk that way. I suspect the author does, though. This is where the series starts to fall apart. The author has been preaching to us all from the start, but he has incorporated it into the story and we’ve all been enthralled, but now the message starts to become more important than the story and to hell with the already established characterizations.

Anyway, when this book opens, Richard and Cara are trying to make a home for Kahlan up in the Hartland Mountains. Kahlan was severely beaten at the end of book 5 – she lost the baby and she is still in a very bad way, so Richard has brought her back to his homeland to heal, but people he grew up with – people he has known all his life – have decided he’s a threat and have threatened him AND his wife. He doesn’t want trouble, so he heads out, but trouble follows and he is forced to deal with it. Eventually he finds an idyllic spot where he builds a little cabin and the three of them settle in. He has always passed time whittling and carving small animals and stuff, though this is the first we’ve heard of it. (This skill becomes important later, though). He carves a small statue for Kahlan that he calls Spirit – everyone who sees it says it is clearly the personification of Kahlan’s own spirit and it is obviously very beautiful and uplifting, whatever.

Well, things go along swimmingly as Kahlan regains her strength and Richard teaches her to fight with willow swords to build up her stamina and her confidence and they keep small fish in jars as pets and Cara learns to bake bread – they’re happy as clams. Richard has had a vision – a sort of prophecy of his own and he insists that if he leads the Empire against the Order now, all will be lost for generations to come. The people must prove themselves to him. (This is a reaction to the stupid people of Anderith who all voted AGAINST joining with the Empire against the Order). Kahlan thinks he’s being stupid, but isn’t strong enough to argue.

Unfortunately, this peaceful existence can’t last, right? Nicci shows up. We learn all about her horrible childhood – you may remember her as a Sister of the Dark – her evil, deranged mother made her the way she is – and this narrative goes on and ON, really hammering home the message to us (we get it, the Order is full of hypocritical, socialistic morons!), but I’m sorry, I find it impossible to have ANY sympathy for her. Yes, her mother was a stupid bitch, but Nicci has had 180 years to realize the truth of things and she’s just too stupid for words. She is bound and determined to learn … something … from Richard. She just has a feeling that Richard holds the key to some elusive knowledge, so she casts a stupid spell on Kahlan which connects them – whatever happens to Nicci, happens to Kahlan – if Nicci dies, Kahlan dies and Nicci can kill her at any time and from any distance. So Richard must go with her in order to keep Kahlan safe.

Nicci takes Richard to the Old World to show him how ordinary people have to struggle to survive (because he’s had it so easy all his life). The Imperial Order is all about Socialism. If you’re able, you need to work your hardest and give everything you make to the Order to help the people who can’t work for themselves. The red-tape bureaucracy has bogged down the whole Old World – everyone is miserable, but Richard is used to hard work and goes about making the best of things in his own quiet way (although, he does pontificate often, which is way out of character).

A major character dies rather senselessly in this one, though I suppose the death helped galvanize Kahlan into finally believing what Richard had been saying all along. What’s the deal with that, anyway? Richard is SEEKER OF TRUTH, remember? Kahlan was there when Zedd named him – why does she NEVER believe anything he says? What with the constant rape and brutality against women in this series and the fact that even the strongest women characters are pretty stupid, I rather suspect Mr. Goodkind of certain misogynous tendencies.

I probably read every word the first time I read this, but in re-reading it, I skipped a LOT – I had to – a lot of it is too maddening to tolerate, but I give this one three stars because it does have a feel good ending. The whole statue thing and the revolution – it’s easy to get caught up in the hoopla. And this is the last decent book in the series. The next two are crap and I haven’t bothered to read the last three, though the reviews I've seen of those seem to echo my disappointment with this one and the next two, so I may never bother reading them at all. I certainly won’t pay good money for them – maybe I’ll find them at the library eventually …


Wizard’s Sixth Rule: The only sovereign you can allow to rule you is reason.
    [Zedd says this one is the most important.]
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7. THE PILLARS OF CREATION (2001)     [*]

WORST of the series so far.

I routinely re-read this series, but have no desire to ever read THIS one again. Having said that, I did just re-read it in order to write a more thorough review for this site. (As opposed to the review I originally wrote for Amazon.com) It's not QUITE as bad as I originally found it - the author was experimenting, but it still sucks and one reason it sucks so badly is because Richard and company - my (and most other fans') MAIN reason for reading these - are hardly in it at ALL.

This one is about Jennson, Richard's half sister, who is ungifted (non magical) and who has been hunted by her evil father since her birth. Now that her father is dead, she believes Richard is hunting her and is determined to kill him so she can be free. The whole thing is about her wandering hunt for Richard.

Now, I'm interested in Jennson's plight, but I read this series because I want to know what will happen next with Richard, his wife Kahlan and their bodyguard Cara. This book is 725 pages long and Richard doesn't enter the picture till page 649! About half way through, I had to flip ahead to be sure Richard was actually in it or I would not have bothered to read the rest at all.

It was nice to see Nathan again, but he didn't appear until chapter 40 and that was it - a few pages. On top of the scarcity of main characters, when they do show up, they start a story line that not only is not resolved in the few pages left, but which isn't even explained! Something about Cara touching something she shouldn't have - sheesh, there could have been a small chapter a few hundred pages sooner showing Cara touching this mysterious thing. Or one showing us the battle that is mentioned that took place in the badlands ... Would it have been too much to ask to have a glimpse of our heroes every 2 or 3 hundred pages? Obviously, this new story line is where the next book starts up, but I don't recall any of the other books ending with such an obscure, cryptic and irritating cliff hanger.

In addition to Jennson, we also meet Oba - another bastard Rahl who is supremely ungifted. That's the point of this book, by the way - the supremely ungifted offspring of a gifted Rahl are known as Holes in the World or sometimes as Pillars of Creation. Yes, the book's title refers to them as well as to a place and an ancient book of the same name, though I'm still not altogether sure why any of them are called that. At any rate, the level of violence in no way diminishes with this installment - Oba is not only supremely ungifted, but he's supremely sicko as well - even worse than Drefen, the half brother of Richard we met a few books back. At least Drefen had some redeeming qualities - in addition to his hobby of mutilating women, he was also a healer. Oba, however, has no redeeming qualities - he quickly graduates from torturing animals to raping, torturing and mutilating women - oh, he enjoys killing men, too! But he spends time on the women, cuz, of course, they enjoy it so much. (Insert increduluous eye-roll here).

Anyway, so far as half-siblings go, Richard actually lucks out with Jennson - she's not actually evil, just deluded - and she quickly sees reason when confronted with the truth. Oba deserves whatever horrible fate befalls him. Okay, this is a spoiler, but I don't care - you shouldn't bother reading this one anyway - Jennson is personally responsible for Jagang NOT being dead - not sure I can forgive her for THAT. Emperor Jagang, you may recall, is the Dream Walker - he's the bad guy. Zedd could have - WOULD have - killed the evil SOB at the Confessor's Palace if not for Jennson interfering and saving the bastard's life. (She shields him with her own body, protecting him from Zedd's Wizard's Fire - as a suprememly ungifted Rahl, magic has no affect on her).

Overall, I was just very disappointed with this entry in the series and I'm hoping the next one gets back to basics.


Wizard’s Seventh Rule: Life is the future, not the past.
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8. NAKED EMPIRE (2003)     [**]

Better than the last book in the series ...
... But that's not really saying much. At least the main characters are back in this installment of The Sword of Truth Series.

This one has Richard Rahl, his wife Kahlan, their bodyguard Cara and company still traveling through The Old World. Richard's magical powers are failing, his headaches are back and will probably kill him if he can't get to his grandfather Zedd in time to help him. But then a group of desperate people poison the Lord Rahl in an effort to force him to help them, so now it's a toss-up as to what will kill him first - the Army of the Imperial Order, his gift or the poison. Meanwhile, Emperor Jagang (he's the bad guy) is moving in on The Wizard's Keep and things are looking dire.

Okay, It's nice to see old friends again. Zedd and Adie are here, along with Nathan (one of my favourite characters) and Ann and even Chase and Rachel show up - lots of fun there, but since when did simple, straightforward Richard become such a pompous, didactic windbag? The last few books in the series have been growing increasingly preachy, but in the past it has been other characters doing the preaching with Richard as the voice of reason teaching by example. Now, all of a sudden, he's spouting long-winded sermons about the virtues of hate and vengeance - what's up with that? And then there's Betty, the goat. She was irritating in the last book, but she's just a pain in the ass now. Don't get me wrong, I like goats, but come on - lock her in a pen and keep her out of the way!

I enjoyed some of the story in this one - especially with Zedd and Nathan and Chase, but out of 725 pages, maybe 300 were story. The rest is crap. I loved the first few books in this series and often re-read them, but after the last two (this one and Pillars of Creation before it), I don't know if I will bother reading the last three of the series.

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9. CHAINFIRE (2005)     [rate]

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10. PHANTOM (2006)     [rate]

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11. CONFESSOR (2007)     [rate]

LEGEND OF THE SEEKER TV SERIES
TV Series

Sam Raimi's Renaissance Pictures has produced a TV Series supposedly based on the books - it's called Legend of The Seeker and it's CRAP! Each and every week I get more and more pissed with this show, but still I watch, though I don't know why. Maybe I'm hoping (in vain, certainly) that eventually, there will be SOMETHING in the show that actually came from the books. Alas, the only similarity is the character names. Why bother?

There's actually a season 2 - amazing. I have not been bothering. Maybe if I was not such a fan of the books, I would like the show on it's own merits, but as it is, I've given up on it.


Last updated Jan 2010

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