Apparently, I waited a while to hit the second book in my current Duncan series. I’ll see about maybe reading the last two closer together. This will be tricky, as there are a couple of gotta read books coming out here soon, plus a couple of other books I want to read in between or whatnot.
Faery Lands Forlorn continues the adventures of Queen Inosolan and Rap the stableboy, now separated by half a continent from each other and from home. Things move fast despite the introduction of a few more races of people with which to fill in the map. In a way, they moved too fast almost. All the events of the first three quarters of the book felt like they should have taken up only a few dozen pages, not a few hundred. And yet there was no trace of things seeming dragged out or focussed on disinteresting side material. It’s a neat trick, and although I wouldn’t want to duplicate it, I wish I knew how he did it. Lots of enjoyable but ultimately empty calories, perhaps.
In the midst of the fast-forward buckle-swashing, sorceress-escaping, and romance-creating, Duncan still found time to flesh out the magic system quite nicely and introduce more powerful enemies while giving old enemies new powers of their own. I think my favorite thing so far is how the word enemy is a misnomer. There are people opposing our heroes’ goals and people assisting them, but there haven’t been any (well, more than one, and I haven’t made up my mind there) truly bad people in the world; it’s all about politics and unobjectionable people who have different goals from each other. The very opposite of run of the mill, and good enough on that merit alone even if it weren’t so rompful.