Monday, May 7, 2012

A Scribe's Review: Dragonlance Chronicles

I'm going to review a set of three books that are responsible for setting me on the road to being a fantasy geek, The Dragonlance Chronicles by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman.  I read these books as a teenager, and since then I have read them so often that I consider myself an expert on them.  These is my own personal thoughts on a trilogy that I still love and read today.
            The series centers around a group of adventurers called the Companions.  Tanis Half-Elven, a bastard half elf, the grumpy yet kind dwarf, Flint Fireforge, the fleet fingered and childlike kender, Tasslehoff Burrfoot, the Plainsmen Goldmoon and Riverwind.  A Knight of Solamnia named Sturm Brightblade and the twins Caramon and Raistlin Majere.  Later on they are joined by the elven princess Laurana and a fiery barmaid Tika Waylan.   The group forms an unlikely force for good, during a period of evil called the War of the Lance. 

            To tell the entire plot would take way longer than this post should be, but summarize Takhasis, a god and the Queen of Darkness returns to a land that had been ravaged by the Cataclysm hundreds of years before.  The people of the land are scattered and fractured.  Of course Takhisis wants to dominate the world and all the souls on it.  She is opposed by Paladine the god of light.  In essence it is a celestial battle that comes to the mortal world of Krynn.

            Along the way the Companions must battle all manner of evil things in their quest; they must also fight distrust and dissention among themselves, the power of evil magic and clerics, and of course dragons.  In the end two of the group will perish and another will betray them.  It all leads to an epic battle that of course leads to the defeat of the evil goddess.

            That description really does not do the book justice.  I'm leaving out huge parts, like the three kingdoms of elves the mountain fortress of the dwarves and the power of magic, and the magnificent return of the dragons of light.  It is simply too much to describe here.  I could really write an entire novel about these three books.  That's ok though, I just wanted to give you a glimpse into the trilogy and a look at my own feelings about the series.

            I do see a lot of similarities with the Lord of the Rings trilogy in these books, but that's all they are, is similarities.  These three book are completely different and are  a work of art all themselves, but if you are a fan of the Lord of the Rings then I suggest these books, they will blow your mind.

            Later on they released a fourth book to end the original trilogy.  While not technically a part of the first three books;  it is spectacular in own right.  I read the fourth book cover to cover in about three days, which at the time, was a record for me.
            These books eventually led to a second trilogy, Legends, which focused on the twins Caramon and Raistin.  Then more and more books followed from full novels to anthologies.  Many dealt with the original cast of characters, and many created their own new ones.  Some expanded on the world that Chronicles created, while others delved into the history of Krynn.  This series took on a life of its own.  I don't know how many books there are total, but I have personally read around forty or so and I have barely scratched the surface.  I only wish a feature length film would be made.  If the same care that was shown for The Lord of the Rings was given to this trilogy, it would be a treat to watch.

            There it is, my opinion.  This set remains one of my favorites of all time.  I recommend them to anyone who loves a good epic fantasy novel.


  1. Loved these books back when I was a teenager. Actually remember getting teary eyed when...well, I guess I shouldn't spoil it if others haven't read them yet. I actually saw a feature (indie) film of this at DragonCon one year. Not particularly good, though. Good post!

  2. I think there was a animated movie released a few years back, but I've never seen it. I had forgotten that when I wrote my review