Tuesday, December 15, 2009

R.A. Salvatore - Homeland: Legend of Drizzt Book I

The Legend of Drizzt Book One
by R.A. Salvatore

In the Underdark, far beneath the earth's surface lies the vast city of Menzoberranzan, home of the drow; the Dark Elves. Here they worship the Spider Queen and in return she gives them powers and guides them. Deceit, treachery, and murder is her way. She is the Queen of Chaos. The drow live strong by this way of life. There is no room for the weak. If weakness is discovered then eradication is the only answer.

Menzoberranzan is segregated by house name, and within each house the ruling figure is the Matron mother, as males are less than females. The top and most powerful ten houses make up the ruling council. Each house covets a higher ranking position. And when an opportunity arises, they plan and pounce, but in order to not suffer any consequences, the vile, evil deed must be done wholly and completely. There cannot be any survivors of that house or the offending house suffers!

A peculiar drow, Drizzt Do'Urden is born, and on the very day that house Do'Urden makes its move against another house, eliminating it and moving their rank to the ninth ruling house in Menzoberranzan. As Drizzt grows and begins his studies to become a drow warrior, he struggles within himself to conform to the the ways of his people. For inside he knows the wrongness that his people suffer at their own hands. One must watch over their shoulder, but in doing so they will surely die from the front.

The ending left you with Drizzt leaving behind that which he always reluctantly called home, after an incident that left me saddened. But Drizzt will persevere, because thanks to his mentor, his father, he was given a sense of morality, and Drizzt will not let a certain sacrifice go unheeded.

I LOVED this book! Written in such a way that it never dragged, and easy to follow, always something occurred, usually some sort of treachery and back-stabbing, and loaded with sword and sorcery action. The beginning of Drizzt's life, the hierarchy, the magic, the odd creatures of the Underdark and the characters fell together with such precision. I couldn't have asked for a better book to appease my need for fantasy. And this was only the beginning! I have some fifteen books to remain immersed in the legend that is Drizzt for whenever I feel the urge to visit him and his escapades.

Thanks to Donna for bringing this series to my attention. I had looked at it in previous years but thought it would not be to my liking. I tend to have reservations with male authors, thinking they would be too sword and sorcery for me and I have NO idea where that notion ever came from! Until this book I had only read one other male author, James Clemens, and I loved his Wit'ch series. So rather than say "don't judge a book by it's cover" for me it would be, "don't judge a book by its author!"



Blodeuedd said...

I did try to read a book once, but I was surely the 20th about Drizzt or something so it was just too hard to follow cos knew nothing,
So perhaps starting with this one would be an idea

Anna said...

That's awesome you loved this book. I picked this up on Donna's rec too. I have read Salvatore before, but none from this series.

Amy C said...

Hi Blodeuedd,
Yeah, I'd say start with this one if you wanted to try this series again. This one actually isn't the first written though. There is another trilogy before this one, but then Salvatore went back and wrote about the beginning of Drizzt with his birth and all that. But I'm reading them in this order since this is the way they are boxed now. I tried finding the order of the series on his website but couldn't, but I did find one on Wikipedia :D. I really did love this book! I'd say give it a go if you wanted to read a good, well crafted fantasy.

Hi Anna! Yes, you did say you were going to read these books also :D. I really think you'll love it too. Very fast paced story!

Donna [F.D. Ramblings] said...

Amy!!! You just made my day! I even showed this post to my son and it made him smile and he said "Of, course." like who wouldn't like Drizzt. :D

Don't you just love Drizzt and the honor he is able to hold on to even with all the treachery and deceit around him? I became very emotionally invested in these novels -- I read them back to back about two years ago. :)

kirstensaell said...

I usually prefer male authors for straight fantasy--which is weird, since their books are usually really light on romance, which I crave. But their characters always seem more relatable somehow. It's bizarre. Still, if you want to try a male author, I don't hesitate to recommend Guy Gavriel Kay. Start with Tigana and go from there...

Amy C said...

Hi Donna! I can see how you could get tied up with these books if the rest are like the first.

I like to browse through reviews on amazon after I read a book and mostly check the negative reviews, and I am usually amazed at why people dislike books, especially so with this one. The entire story from beginning to end just sailed along so smoothly. And Drizzt...Yes, he is one of those characters that you want to know more about. There were some heart tugging scenes in this one. What a crazy world the dark elves live in! And all I can think about is reading the next book, Exile :). I'll likely start it after I finish this other one first. I thought to add a romance in between :D.

Amy C said...

Hi Kirsten,

I do have a Guy Gavriel Kay book, but it's not Tigana, which I know about from your recommendation :). I can't think of the one I do have, but it just doesn't sound so good, at least not like Tigana does. I'll have to make it a point to read him in 2010! And I'm sure I'll wonder why the heck it took me so long to pick up one of his books!

My Blog 2.0 (Dottie) said...

Hi Amy!

Like you, I don't read a lot of male fantasy authors, I do when it comes to mysteries or thrillers, but fantasy, I leave almost exclusively to female authors. I love Jim Butchers' The Dresden Files, but it's more UF than straight fantasy. I have looked at this author more than once...after seeing Donna's review and now your's, I don't know why I haven't picked this one up. I'll have to pick it up, luckily, I asked for Amazon and Borders money for Christmas.

Dottie :)