Gauntlgrym by R.A. Salvatore

“Even the short-lived humans divide their lives into segments, though they rarely recognize the transient truth as they move through one or another stage of their existence.”

4/5 stars.
Hardcover, 345 pages.
Read from June 4, 2018 to June 8, 2018.

Yup, 20 books into this gigantic series now.  It is actually really nice to have a reliable series of books to fall on that you know will be an easy and comforting read but will also offer a margin of excitement. This book seems to have revived some new life into the series and I haven’t enjoyed a Drizzt book like this in a long time.

Drizzt and Bruenor have been through a lot together as friends. So many doors have closed in their old lives but Bruneor wants one last adventure. The adventure will help Bruenor with the grief he is unable to shake and Drizzt to begin to finally process his and what the future will mean for him. The two set off to find the legendary dwarven hall of Gauntlgrym, which is reminiscent of the time they set off to find Mithral Hall, however, the lack of their regular companions weighs heavy on both of them. In their search for the mysterious hall, they encounter a looming catastrophe that if not dealt with will envelop and destroy the area of Neverwinter completely. During their adventures, they run into Jarlaxle and Athrogate who have found themselves deeply caught up in the disaster looming below Neverwinter. While Drizzt has never considered Jarlaxle a friend he isn’t an enemy either. Drizzt feels a renewed energy in having a connection to his old life around and he begins to have a better understanding of the moral compass that drives Jarlaxle as he begins to question his own.

This storyline of this book is dark and has some unexpected twists and finalizing deaths which, as a fan is hard to come to terms with. Drizzt’s character dynamics take a stark turn in this book and I imagine it will only continue to unfold. I also have my suspicions about a villain character called Barrbarus the Grey as he sounds too reminiscent of a character that had a prominent role in previous Drizzt books. I have not figured out how it would be possible considering how much time has passed but I am eager to read the next book to find out.

A lot of fans did not seem to be happy with this book but I think it is because Salvatore intentionally took Drizzt’s story in a new direction to keep his story fresh. I personally think that this book was a success and I am interested to see how this new storyline progresses. Overall, it has made me excited about devouring the next few books in this series and already have them checked out from the library.

The Two Swords by R.A. Salvatore

3/5 stars.
Paperback, 376 pages.
Read from September 02 to 16, 2015.

If someone had told me 10 years ago when I first picked up this series that I’d still be reading it, I would have called them liars. This is the 16th book in the Legend of Drizzt series , and the third and final book in the Hunter’s Blade Trilogy by R.A. Salvatore. What’s mad, is that I’m only part way through this series! Not sure if this is true, but I was told that Salvatore would have ended the series ages ago but because all the rights are owned by Forgotten Realms so if he stopped writing it, then they would have just had someone else to write it for him. Needless to say, even without that knowledge, you have to give it to Salvatore for keeping the quality of this series consistent and enjoyable.

Drizzt, a righteous and kind dark-elf, is alone and in mourning as he believe that all of his friends, Bruenor the dwarf and King of Mithral Hall, and his two adopted step-children: Catti-brie, a feisty human warrior, Wulfgar the Giant, and Regis, aka Rumblebelly the halfling, are dead from the battle in previous book. Innovindil, a moon elf, has been helping Drizzt learn what it means to be an elf and to help him deal with his grief and his remaining feelings for Catti-brie. With the fight going on against the orcs, Innovindil’s dead lover’s pegasus’ was captured so the two of them are out to reclaim it. Meanwhile, a massive war wages at Mithral Hall where Bruenor is on death’s doorstep and his two step-children are alive and waging, what appears to be a losing battle, against Obould and his orc army.  Drizzt’s quest with the pegasus will eventually lead him back to Mithral Hall and the staggering odds against the orcs.

I found myself trying to race through the chapters in hopes that Drizzt would soon be reunited with his friends and that he would finally get a chance to express his feelings to Catti-brie, which is something reader’s have been anticipating since the beginning of the series.

As with many of Salvatore’s books, this book is pretty predictable, but that’s not really why I read them. Out of all the books that I read, I have to admit that this series is my guilty pleasure. They are always an easy read with wonderful characters that you look forward to following on whatever adventure they partake in. I believe that you don’t even need to enjoy fantasy novels to find pleasure in this series as Salvatore does such a great job with his character work. Another solid story by Salvatore!

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