Sunday, November 30, 2008

Dragons of the Dwarven Depths by Margaret Weis & Tracy Hickman

This book has been sitting on my to-be-read shelf for at least a year. I picked it up when I saw a signed copy at the book store, otherwise, I probably wouldn't have bothered.
I enjoy the Dragonlance books, but I would not call myself a huge fan. This title is the first in a new series, the Lost Chronicles. The Lost Chronicles series documents some of the events that take place in between the original Chronicles series. This first book covers the events between the first and second books. I read those ages ago, so trying to remember it for this one was a little bit difficult.
Dragons of the Dwarven Depths begins right where Dragons of Autumn Twilight leaves off. Lord Verminaard has just been killed, and the companions have helped his slaves escape. Now they are all trying to figure out what to do next. None of the various factions within this group of refugees can agree, causing problems for Tanis and his friends, who are just trying to help. They end up splitting up - Tanis and Flint head out to find the fabled dwarf kingdom of Thorbardin; Caramon, Raistlin, and Sturm (later followed by Tika and Tas) head to the haunted keep of Skullcap, where Raistlin is drawn by some strange power; and Riverwind, Goldmoon, Laurana, and Gilthanis stay to help the refugees. The story switches back and forth as it follows these various groups, bringing them all together again in Thorbardin.
I did find this book an entertaining read, but I can't say whether or not I'll bother picking up the other two books in the Lost Chronicles series. I am sure that for diehard fans of the Dragonlance books, getting to read more stories by the original authors is a treat. But to me, the whole book felt like an inside joke - it really should only be read by people who have read the other books, as so much of your understanding of the strange things that happen relies on that. And it is simply not as well written as many of this team's other books. The editing is terrible, which is always frustrating, and in parts it really felt like they phoned it in. All-in-all, this is one edition to the Dragonlance series that is fun to read, especially for big fans, but otherwise should not be bothered with.

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