Thursday, March 10, 2011

When Fantasy Goes Wrong

Now that I am deep into one of the best fantasy novels to come along in forever it got me thinking about some of the worst. There is no middle road in this genre; books with dragons, elves and fairy princesses on the cover are one of two things: Great escapist fiction brimming with social commentary, or a big steaming pile of Ogre poop. The fantasy novel one-off is harder to find than the One Ring, so when you buy one of these books, get ready to buy at least three more in the unforeseeable future just to get some story resolution.  The following represents an example of this genre going very, very wrong. It is also a painful memory from my childhood that I won't get into here....

The good old Wheel of Time series by James Oliver Rigney, Jr. (a.k.a Robert Jordan). I read the first book when I was about fifteen and I couldn't wait to get the next one or two and finish the story. Now take a look at all those books in that picture up there and guess if I ever finished it. Keep in mind that the first one was released in 1990 and the final book IS STILL FORTHCOMING. I don't mean to be insensitive, bearing in mind that the author passed away in 2007 before he could pen the final book(s). The problem I have with this series is that after reading six of them the loose ends just got looser, the cast of characters just got bigger and the whole thing started to feel like a daytime soap opera that was meant to go on forever. I guess I will never know if Rand fulfills the prophecy and defeats the Dark One or whatever and the true tragedy is, I no longer even care.

No comments:

Post a Comment