The Belgariad

10/10

Pawn of Prophecy

The Belgariad is one of my favorite stories in the fantasy genre. The reason I enjoy this story so much is because of the fact that the world is intricately thought out. If you like stories such as Lord of the Rings from J.R. Tolkin, then you'll definitely love David Eddings, books. Fantasy series usually have a hard time grabbing me and the whole issue of wordy play and exasperating, complex sentences never really grabbed me. The whole fact that sometimes hardcore fantasy novels have a twinge of subtle British humor always passed over my head, making it very hard to pick up a non-children's fantasy novel. But from the moemnt got through reading the first chapter something hooked me and I decided to try for more.

David Eddings a weaves masterful tale without the need to use large words, yet has enough respect to not dumb down the language in order to get his descriptions down. The story is filled with cynical and sardonical humor that is not too dry but always shouts out taunting actions between the characters as if a mocking reply with each phrase. One of my pet peves about fantasy novels is that often times the hero or heroine never seems to be quiet human and everyone seems quiet superhuman and self rightous. The Belgariad series doesn't do that. It's very realistic on it's out put on each of the problems our heros/heroines face, and quite frankly, I love it.

The story takes place in an unnamed world on the content which is simply called, "The Kingdoms of the West and Angarok". The story revolves around the concept that the world has seven gods, each having their own people.The begins with tale of how long ago, the evil God, Torak sought dominion and drove men and gods to war over a mysterious jewel, called the Orb. Belgarath the Sorcerer led men to recover the Orb, that protected men. As long as it sat at Riva, as the prophecy goes, men would be safe. Our story takes place around the young farm lad, Garion. Garion lives with his Aunt Pol and helps her in her kitchen. He is doesn't believe in magic or prophecies of the like. But as Garion grows older, strangers begin to visit and suddenly due to mysterious circumstances he is forced away from his protected atmosphere and into a world of magic and chaos and a destiny that he cannot avoid.

What's nice about this is that the story starts off when Garion is quiet young and you get to see him grow not just as a character,but also in physcial standards, such as age and the like. What made this story great is the vibrance of each country, culture even the characters. The Belgariad series is broken up into a book set of 5 and because it's so irrisistible on how everything just clicks, you will quickly grow an attatchment and fondness for the characters and the world itself, and realise, just how alive this world is. As much as I love fantasy novels, this world doesn't have a lot of loops and it covers everything. The author, David Eddings even decided to include a book of his preliminary writings of twenty years that he did, just to flesh out all the minor details that won't be specifically said directly in the main story. I mean the book, while it could have ended with the Belgariad, even goes further with a second series of five more books in a series called the Mallorean. While the Belgariad gives a placement of finality and conclusion, it just makes you want more.

queen magician

9/10

Looking at the cover art work I noticed a few things. For one this is the 1982 cover art edition by Lawernce Schwinger. The art is simple and clean. And to my surprise, I found out the publishers are Del Ray. Del Ray always does excellent work with theier publishing jobs. No sloppy misprints or anything. I did have one minor issue with the cover. It seems that the character designs for Garion and Aunt Pol are not consistant. Mind you though, on the first book, "Pawn of Prophechy", Garion is only fourteen years old. While each cover shows how he grows over the past 4 years, his facial features look absolutely different from cover to cover. I tend to get irritated when Garion's hair isn't curley or the facial fetures look the same at the next cover. The book even describes his hair as curley. Aunt Pol seems to have slight differences in each other as well. I'm guessing that the illustrator at the time based the character designs on the popular actors during the 80's. I get this ever so slightly feeling of deja vu, when I glance at the cover.

10/10

Silk! You're amazing! Belgarath, you old fox, you're as crude as ever. And Ce'Nedra, we can't forget about you, you're absolutely adorable when you want something. Okay if you don't know who I'm talking about its fine I'll explain. The characters are so fleshed out in this series that it is amazing. Each comes from their own country and has as specific idiocentricy that fits their character. Howver, they grow and change and develop. I think my favorite characters out the series have to be Ce'Nedra, Silk and Belgarath. Belgarath is an amazing character. He's the all powerful sorcerer. Though unlike most all powerful heroes who have the universe at their hands to command and are able to throw it around effortlessly and shamelessly, Belgarath doesn't do that. He's very powerful but doesn't find the need to be superman all the time. He's lived seven thousand years and doesn't give a damn. Also while he has power it has limits. And boy do I love him. He's the lone wolf character and you always seem to find him up to a mischievious trick when he's in disguise.

Now we have Silk. Silk hails from the northern region of the content, the counrty of Drasnia. And he is charm. He's got fast wit thinking, and a sarodnical humor that seems to be mocking the other characters. He's a liar, a theif, and spy and a cheat at dice. He may have pleanty of faults but you just can't come to hate Silk. His character is so outragous to which that annoying idiocsyncrocy doesn't seem all that annoying. I mean, his home country is basically totally made up of spies. Even the king and queen spys on people.I think the first time I read the I would always laugh when I came to a scene with Silk in it.

Last of all we have our Tolnedran Imperial Highness, Princess Ce'Nedra, Daughter of Ran BourneXXIII, and Jewel of the house of Bourne. Frankly Princess Ce'Nedra's character is absolutely dreadful. She's a spoiled brat and ends up treating Garion and the others horribly. However, she has a very charming side to her. Like all Tolnedran's she's obssessed with money. Ce'Nedra's charming side eventually begins to show in the later books. She eventually learns to care about the others around her and her growth as a character is amazing. She goes from a spoiled little brat to that of an elegant woman fitting of her character who even participates in the Great War. Also she can be quite wicked at times....in a good sense. I enjoyed her the most out of all the female characters. Her's was the most vibrant and noticable change of growth out of the all the characters.

All in all I think that all of the characters are quite well-rounded and don't seem to be the stereotypicial, linear sort of characters.

9.9/10

I really enjoyed this series. David Eddings is pratically my favorite author. Old the series may be, but it is a classic example of a good, down to earth fanatsy, with a little bit of humor. The characters are well arounded, and the world is rich and evidant. I'd even go as far as to say that given the time period this book came out, it has moral values installed in the writting. It's one of those series that never gets old and a pleasant time for a second read. Just by reading it again after looking at David Edding's release of "The Rivan Codex", makes the re-read all that more enjoyable.

Let's all join me in prayer by putting our hands together and hoping this wonderful author will live a long time.

Author Info

David Eddings

David enddings was born in Spokane, Wshington, in 1931, and was raised in the Puget Sound area north of Seattle. He recieved a Bachelor of Arts degree from Reed College in Portland, Oregon, in 1954 and a Masters of Arts degree from the University of Washington in 1961. He has served in the United States Army, worked as a buyer for the BOeing Company, has been a grocery clerk, adn ahs taught college English. He has lived in many parts of the united states.

His first novel, High Hunt (published by Putnam in 1973), awas a contemporary adventure story. The field of fanatasy has always been an intrust to him however, and he turned to the Belgariad in an effort to develop certain techincal and philosophical ideas concerning the genre.

Eddings currently resides with his wife, Leigh, in the south-west.

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