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Books for Review should be sent to: Don D'Ammassa, 323 Dodge Street, East Providence, RI 02914

 LAST UPDATE  7/21/20

The Redemption of Althalus by David & Leigh Eddings, Warner, 2007 

The final novel by the authors was a standalone adventure. Althalus is a professional thief chose by a goddess to help in a battle between two gods, each of whom has written a magical book that controls the fate of the world and each of which wants to destroy the other. There is time travel in this one, which is the only thing that makes it differ from all of their other fantasy worlds, and the plot is otherwise the same. A war is to be fought and we are shown in detail the logistical problems involved, the diplomacy needed to get various peoples to work together, etc. This is seven hundred pages long and should have been about half that. 7/21/20

The Younger Gods by David & Leigh Eddings, Warner, 2006 

Thank heavens this was the end of the Dreamers series. The hideous Vlagh is raising a new army of insect warriors. One of the four gods of Dhrall has gone insane and is planning to murder another god, which would bring the entire universe to an end for some never explained reason. The human armies find themselves caught between their enemies and their patrons.  The climax is pretty flat, certainly not up to supporting a four volume series. The device used to defeat the Vlagh is something they could have done at the beginning of the series, which would have avoided four costly wars.  7/16/20

Crystal Gorge by David & Leigh Eddings, Warner, 2005 

Third in the Dreamers series. The evil Vlagh’s armies of monsters have been defeated twice, so now it creates a new type that can pass for human and uses them to stir up trouble among the allied tribes and nations. The gods themselves are preparing to hibernate and their mental powers are weakening. Multiple pointless flashbacks, lots of new but unimportant characters, and once again no real action until the final quarter of the book. This must have been nearly as dull to write as it was to read. 7/13/20

The Treasured One by David & Leigh Eddings, Warner, 2004 

Second on the Dreamers series. Having defeated the army of snake men, our heroes must now deal with armored spiders and venomous beetles. They also have logistic problems and there are tensions between various allies. A portion of one army splits off into a third force under the command of a corrupt ex-priest. A mysterious entity starts transmitting disturbing thoughts into the minds of the soldiers. Another ponderous slow moving story leading up to a not very interesting series of battles. Plot and character development are practically non-existent. 7/8/20

The Elder Gods by David & Leigh Eddings, Warner, 2004    

First in the Dreamers series, set in a world where the gods – who actually aren’t gods at all – manipulate humans into fighting wars against the evil Vlagh and its army of serpent men. But we have to get through about three hundred pages before the fighting actually starts and the endless and pointless conversations that flesh out the preparations for battle are a true test of someone’s ability to read bad prose. As usual with the Eddings, the powers of the gods are inconsistent and they forget about them until they are needed by the plot.  7/2/20

Time Must Have a Stop by Aldous Huxley, Berkley, 1963  (originally published in 1944)  

This is only marginally fantastic. Sebastien Barnack is an unhappy young man chafing because of the dictates of his father, who is a fanatic socialist. He is visiting a hedonistic uncle in Italy when the man dies of a heart attack. Sebastien becomes sexually active and inadvertently causes the servants to be accused of theft. The fantasy elements include the dead man’s experiences in the afterlife – not a Christian one – and his visions of the future. He is also able to communicate after a fashion when his spirit is invoked during a séance. Quite good fiction but mediocre fantasy. 7/1/20