I’m a huge fantasy nut… one of my biggest hobbies is reading. I love reading fantasy books; I have for years. I own a few hundred fantasy books and buy at least 1-2 books a month.

One author that I’ve always found interesting is David Eddings. He’s not the most sophisticated author, but he has some good ideas and spins a pretty good yarn although at times it seems a little juvenile. Regardless, it’s plain old good fun to read. His Belgariad-based books (Belgariad, Mallorean, Belgarath the Sorcerer, etc.) books are all great. I’ve read both the Belgariad and Mallereon (both five-book series) twice. And his other trilogies, the Elenium and the Tamuli are both really good reads.

I’ve been reading some fairly serious fantasy stuff lately tho… books by Sarah Ash (the “Tears of Artamon” trilogy is a fantastic read and I highly recommend it!), Terry Goodkind’s latest, Steven Erikson’s “Malazan Books of the Fallen” series (amazing read!), and R. Scott Bakker’s “The Prince of Nothing” trilogy (also a really unique and extremely interesting fantasy trilogy). Then I started reading Edding’s “The Dreamers” series.

Well, after 20 pages into “The Elder Gods” I was pretty much ready to toss it out the window or, at least, go to the nearest second-hand bookstore and trade it in (and the other two books in the series that I have). It wasn’t fun or entertaining, it was juvenile and stupid… gods riding around on lightning bolts without a clue about what’s going on, talking like idiots, etc. Well, I persisted and made it to part two of the book which, thankfully, no longer deals with those idiot gods and deals with good old human beings (and it only took me 53 pages of idiocy to get there). It’s still not nearly up to par with the Belgariad and friends, but it’s at least passable. The last few books I’ve read I literally devoured… I read the Sarah Ash trilogy in two weeks.

Have I read too many really good books lately or is Eddings starting to lose it? So far I’m really disappointed in this book… and this is a first for any of his books. If he doesn’t manage to pull this one through, it and the next two books in the series are going down the street to trade in for some other used books. Beware sucky authors!

As an aside, some really good authors that I recommend are the above noted Sarah Ash, R. Scott Bakker, Steven Erikson (this guy is amazing… has to be one of the best stuff I’ve ever read). I’d also recommend two relative newcomers to the genre: Robert Newcomb and David Farland… Newcomb has the same kind of easy read style as Eddings, but a lot more serious (and gory) and Farland has some really unique ideas… very good stuff. I’d also recommend anything by Sara Douglas and Terry Goodkind (my wife’s favourite), and damn near anything by Margaret Weis & Tracy Hickman (those Dragonlance books rock… Margaret, I love you!!)

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