I picked this up as a gift and I read the summary on the other side of the book and I found it to my liking. It was all there for those who might read it, but he was one of only a handful who could. I realize it is 1 of 2, but based on what he's written before, it seemed to me as I was reading that this could easily have been all fit into one book, instead of broken into two, a year apart. Vast Troll armies want their land. If there is a choice of file format, which format is better to download? Ultimately, the mists come down and the men and elves of the valley must deal with very real threats that have been surviving in the wastelands of what once was North America. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental. Brooks never disappoints me and although this is his not best novel, it still a testament about how good this master of genre is.
Those who escaped the carnage were led to sanctuary by the boy saviour known as Hawk: the gypsy morph. But, the barrier is finally weakening, and those inside must learn about the world outside their safe little valley. As I told Terry upon finishing the book, The Legends of Shannara duology could be Terry's finest Shannara story since The Druid of Shannara if he can find a way to fulfill all of the promise from the first book in the second book. He summoned the magic, holding out the staff before him and using the words of power and small movements of his hands. Anything else they would call heresy;they would fight against it until the evidence stood before them, andeven then they might not believe.
There's one man who has a Black Staff and seems to know magic. Set 500 years after The Gypsy Morph, Bearers of The Black Staff tells the story of the inhabitants of the Valley that Hawk led the survivors to. Bearers of the Black Staff is, quite simply, one of Terry's best books. The other characters are alive as well and upon reflection I think two of the periphery characters will be beloved by certain groups of readers as well. To which of thesewould the intruders go? But time allowed for little deviation from hisduty, least of all seeking out and training the successor whom he fer-vently hoped he would not need for some years to come. Everything changes when that world is threatened.
One critique of Brooks that I've read is that his plots are formulaic. Together, the young Trackers, the aging Knight, and a daring Elf princess race to spread word of the encroaching danger. This one tells us of events that occur a few centuries after the time frame of The Gypsy Morph. I did ask the clerk but my question wasn't well thought out and vague. They were so faint he almost missed them. The first part of a two-book set, Black Staff is set 500 years after the events in The Gypsy Morph, where the the descendants of civilization's demise re-emerge from their protected valley into a world greatly changed and far more dangerous.
I wouldn't recommend this to a newcomer to the Shannara books too much would be missed that happened before , but it is a good way to spend a few hours for a fan of Terry Brooks and his series. But that said, this one is enjoyable. Until you got close enough to realize he wasn't a figment of the imagination, but as substantial as the rumors that tracked him in whispers and long silences, and then he was something much more. Since then, he has continued to flesh out the world of Shannara, as well as add a few other series, like The Knight of the Word and Magic Kingdom For Sale, Sold. Yet the Gray Man stepped with grace and ease across the treacherous smoothness, not oblivious to the danger so much as accustomed to it.
But nothing was permanent; all things must change. This would be difficult for many of the valleysinhabitants to acceptMen, Elves, Lizards, Spiders, and those singularcreatures that lacked a group identity. His story telling skills are top notch. When Sider Ament, the only surviving descendant of the Knights of the Word, detects unknown predators stalking the valley, he fears the worst. Bearers of the Black Staff picks up the story 500 years later, inside the valley where the people have developed their own culture full of political and religious intrigue, based on the belief that their valley will be protected forever. It was a New York Times bestseller for more than six months. My only problems with Brooks is that he at times sets an impossibly high bar for himself.
Neither this book nor its dust jacket have any discernable flaws. Two, perhaps three days ago, it had made itsway down into the valley. Amid the dark of the trunks and limbs andthe deep green of the conifer needles, he was another of nights shadows. But he sensedsomething nevertheless, a presence hidden below, just out of sight. One of the things that I especially liked about this novel is the way that Brooks presented the backstory that linked the stories following the time that Hawk, the Gypsy Morph delivered his people into the valley that had been protected by magical barriers, which are now down. And when Panterra Qu and Prue Liss, expert Trackers from the human village of Glensk Wood, find two of their own gruesomely killed, there can be no doubt: The once safe haven of generations has been laid bare and made vulnerable to whatever still lurks in the wasteland of the outside world.
Sider Ament, the last of the Knights of the Word, protects the valley with his magical staff. When Sider Ament, the only surviving descendant of the Knights of the Word, detects unknown predators stalking the valley, he fears the worst. But the cocoon of protective magic surrounding the valley has now vanished. But this time around, Brooks lapses into the standard fantasy formula. The mists that had sealed the valley since the time of the Hawk had not yet receded, but that would change and it would do so in his lifetime.