High Fantasy Reviews

The Two Towers

[openbook booknumber=”0618002235″][rating:5/5]

The Fellowship was scattered. Some were bracing hopelessly for war against the ancient evil of Sauron. Some were contending with the treachery of the wizard Saruman. Only Frodo and Sam were left to take the accursed Ring of Power to be destroyed in Mordor–the dark Kingdom where Sauron was supreme. Their guide was Gollum, deceitful and lust-filled, slave to the corruption of the Ring.

Thus continues the magnificent, bestselling tale of adventure begun in The Fellowship of the Ring, which reaches its soul-stirring climax in The Return of the King.

The second part of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Two Towers takes up where The Fellowship of the Ring left off. When the trust that was so necessary to the fellowship comes undone so does the fellowship itself. The quest splits off and the first half of the book is instead focused on the fellowship that was left behind and their hunt for those members that were taken by the orcs. Even though you don’t pick up with Frodo and the ring until half way through the book it was still very exciting to hear about the adventures of Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli, not to mention the remaining hobbits.

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The Fellowship of the Ring

[openbook booknumber=”0618002227″][rating:5/5]

A long time ago the Rings of Power were forged by the Elves and distributed amongst the leaders of Middle Earth. An evil Dark Lord named Sauron then forged the One Ring to rule them all and used it to gain completely dominion over the people of Middle Earth. He fell in a great battle and the Ring was taken from him and everyone thought it was lost forever. Then the events of The Hobbit occurred and the Ring passed by chance onto a Hobbit named Bilbo.

Now years have passed, the Dark Lord Sauron has been slowly regaining power and the fact that the One Ring has fallen into the hands of a Hobbit has become known to him. The Ring passes to Frodo, Bilbo’s cousin and heir. With the help of his friends Frodo must flee the Shire and manage to take the Ring to the Cracks of Doom, the only place the Ring can be destroyed, or risk having Sauron rise to power once again. With the help of the elves a Fellowship is formed to help Frodo with his quest to bear the Ring to its destruction. But, can this quest possibly succeed when so much depends on one so very small?

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The Hobbit

[openbook booknumber=”0618002219″][rating:5/5]

It’s hard to write a review about a classic like The Hobbit. You can’t help but be awed by the history and literary significance of the books (and I include both The Hobbit and the trilogy that follows when I say this) upon which so much of epic fantasy literature is now based. Everything from the heroes quest to the world building, from the wizards and dragons to the goblins and elves scream fantasy to you and you can’t help but realize that this was one of the first, and that definitely gives you pause and something to think about.

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An Exchange of Gifts

[openbook booknumber=”0809556855″]


A princess named Anastasia runs away from home and fakes her death to escape a marriage that is about to be forced upon her by her father the king. She finds herself in a run down hut and woefully unprepared for the life of an independent with no servants to wait upon her or skill to make up the lack. That’s when the boy Wisp stumbles into her life. A waif of a boy, he’s a runaway too and the two soon help each other to survive in the backwoods alone. Until the secrets they have kept from each other plunge them into danger and risk tearing them apart.

An Exchange of Gifts had all the makings of a really great book, in my opinion: there was a great set-up, interesting plot, a backstory about magical Gifts and traditions, and characters that were engaging and well rounded. Unfortunately this novel was never really finished in my opinion. The book in its current form would have made a great rough first draft of said novel, but to publish it as it is, I think, took away a lot of what this novel could have become if it had been fleshed out a little more. As it is, you can read the whole book in 20 minutes and, while being an interesting diversion, you can’t help thinking the author could have done better than this.

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