Book Review: SORCERESS OF DARSHIVA by David Eddings

Genre: Fantasy
Age Range: Adult
Star Rating: 3 stars
Series: yes - fourth book in companion series

*SPOILER ALERT: contains SPOILERS for GUARDIANS OF THE WEST, KING OF THE MURGOS, and DEMON LORD OF KARANDA*

Synopsis:

Book cover for SORCERESS OF DARSHIVE, howling wolf on lake with red-sailed ships

The Endless Quest…

Troubles and delays continued to mount as Garion, Belgarath, Polgara, and the company pursued Zandramas across the known world. Possessed by the Dark Destiny, she had stolen Garion’s infant son for a ritual that would destroy all that men valued.

She was always one step ahead, taunting and spying on them, flying over in the form of a great dragon. Her armies, led by a Demon Lord, threatened on one side; on the other were the forces of Emperor Zakath, seeking to capture them.

Somehow, as the Seeress of Kell had warned, they had to be at the Place Which Is No More for the ritual at the same time as Zandramas, or face disaster. But where that might be they still had no clue.

Synopsis taken from Goodreads. Add to your shelves here.


Review:

The penultimate book in this series, and the first one that really feels like it’s moving towards something – as the structure is much more spread out of this series than the previous, which has major events and turning points in book 3 and 4. This series doesn’t, just all heading towards the end of the series, so there aren’t any major moments elsewhere for tension and a feeling of conclusion/achievement in between.

We now know the final task to achieve before the final confrontation. Both of these happen in the final book, but once that knowledge of the penultimate destination is gained there is finally a feeling of movement tracking towards a conclusion. It helps make the second half go faster, and give more direction to the book overall.

The climax of this book still doesn’t feel like much of a conclusion/earnt finale the way most books do – because it’s mostly observing others tussle and isn’t a goal of the characters being completed. It’s a (frankly) minor nuisance finally being dealt with. He’s supposed to be a major threat, but that’s the thing this series has completely failed to establish really. There aren’t threats, just little inconveniences to get around (like a-another small troop of soldiers to smash through.)

Zakath is back! He is probably my favourite of the new characters in this series. It’s nice to see something of what Garion had to undergo in a very short time in the fourth book of The Belgariad happen over more time. Zakath is already a ruler, but he isn’t brilliant. He also has to get used to sorcery and prophecy. Instead of seeing Garion go through all this, we get to see someone else go through it from his perspective as an observer and a helper.

Onto the final book!


Read my reviews of other books by David Eddings:

The Belgariad (chronologically before this series:)

The Malloreon (this series):

Companions to the Belgariad and the Malloreon:

The Elenium:

The Tamuli (chronologically after the Elenium):

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