'Journey of the Jerle Shannara Book II: Antrax' by Terry Brooks

Comment on this

Posted by Lyra (22nd Feb 2002, 19:20)

Originally published in Wyrmtongue March 2002.

This is the second book in the current series of Shannara books. Brooks' villainess, the Ilse Witch, is driven by a ruthless desire to seek revenge for the brother she wrongly believes to be dead. Her brother Bek tries to convince her of his identity but she cannot let herself listen - she has too much invested in revenge, hatred and her own past crimes. Meanwhile, the other members of Bek's party stumble into the grip of an ancient evil - Antrax, the computer guardian of lost science, which has learned to survive in this age of magic by draining those who seek it out. The Druid Walker, the cowardly Elvenprince Ahren and the flawed young seeker Ryer find themselves in serious jeopardy in the search for the treasure reputedly hidden amongst the ruins of the city controlled by antrax.

Unusually for the second book in a modern series, it actually has a follow-able plot for someone who has not reads the first book in the series.My main criticisms are that it neither starts nor ends well. Brooks obviously expects that whoever chooses to read this book will read the earlier ones first and so makes no effort to set the scene, but merely leaps into the middle of a story as though we are supposed to guess what's already happened. The story ends in just the same way. My guess is that he intended to leave a cliffhanger, but instead manages to leave us with no idea what's happened and with no real ending. He leaves half of his heros wandering around in the jungle and the others stuck inside and it is though he has just thought 'oh, that's enough pages for a book, lets publish this and get on with the writing'.

Despite this it is well written with no obvious missed plot ends, although, like many middle-series books, it has no depth of scene or character, obviously something else we are supposed to have gained from the first books.

It is interesting from a fantasy point of view, that despite the modern technology throughout Antrax's city he has continued to use a traditional style of fantasy writing with swords and sorcery. It was a disappointment that the technology was only there as an evil to be beaten and not as a tool for good as I feel that there is a lost opportunity that he may make up for in the next book in the series.

I however, will not be waiting with bated breath for the next book. It was good, but I felt that I'd missed too much from the previous book to enjoy it properly. I will not be returning to read the previous book either. Overall, I thought it was mediocre and not worth paying the extortionate price for.

About item:

- The Voyage Of The Jerle Shannara 2: Antrax

Related items:

- Shannara 1: The Sword Of Shannara
- The Voyage Of The Jerle Shannara 1: Ilse Witch
- The Voyage Of The Jerle Shannara 3: Morgawr

About author:

- Brooks, Terry

Related authors:

- Brooks, Terry

Back to reviews index / Refresh page


You can edit or delete your own comments, but you'll have to login first.

No discussion yet.

Add your burblings

You are not logged in. Any comments submitted will be attributed to random.
Log in/Register

View small text box

Special tags: <user>username</user>,<link>URL</link>,<image (align="right|left|center")>URL</image>,<big>,<small>
Allowed HTML; <b>,<i>,<u>,<strike>,<p>,<br />,<hr />,<pre>,<ul>,<ol>,<li>,<dl>,<dt>,<dd>,<a>,<img>

Back to reviews index

Recent articles: [2x06!! Stream "The Fall" Season 2 Episode 6 Finale Online] ['Best of SF' article in Felix Today] [Science fiction bonanza in Felix] [Science Fiction Column - "Moon" Review] [Congratulations SpaceX]