I finally finished the Two Swords, the third book in the Hunter’s Blades trilogy, one of the Drizzt books by RA Salvatore. It took me about 2 years to read the trilogy, for a variety of reasons. In truth, I spread it out for enjoyment, reading seasons, vacation time, and to keep on pace with my own novel writing. One of the primary I began reading Salvatore was because of the similarities between his writing style and mine—and then I received some of his D&D books as gifts and so I just kept reading.
The Hunter’s Blades trilogy gave me mixed feelings. The Two Swords (book 3) is assuredly my favorite and the one I am reviewing. I especially enjoyed the final pages, and really the last half of the book feels like the denouement of one larger story—as if it the trilogy were just one big book. That could be great, except it made the pacing difficult for me. The Two Swords finally winds down and begins to give us some closure (and the relationships are finally in focus, whereas everything felt clouded in a haze of war, previously to it.) in contrast, The Lone Drow—despite giving us Innovindil, who I really liked—felt like one really long dark moment. It was lonely. Everything circled around itself and kept the geography limited. Nothing about it made me like the characters any more—maybe the opposite, in fact. It was, however, necessary—but that’s what it made all seem like one larger book. The Thousand Orcs had a great setup, making the first book-end on the trilogy.
In the final twenty pages or so Salvatore does a phenomenal job of seamlessly setting the hook for the expansive world at large, obviously setting up any number of directions the reader (and author(s)) might go with Forgotten Realms stories. And that’s part of the whole appeal of D&D and the fantasy genre as a whole. Masterful writing, perhaps a little long winded at times, but great story that blows open new avenues and interest in the D&D landscape.
D&D is a dangerous world and this trilogy proves deadly for many characters—even some you might initially think have character shields. Check out more of my reviews over at Inside the Inkwell!