4/5 star rating
Comprising five books in total, the Belgariad starts with Pawn of Prophecy. I started reading Fantasy in 1993 starting with The Sword of Shannara. Terry Brooks at this stage was publishing his Heritage of Shannara series, by the time I’d read through the books he’d published I was hungry for more. Browsing through the local bookstore I was overwhelmed by the choices and for no other reason than the pretty book cover and the blurb I choose Pawn of Prophesy.
The Belgariad comprises five books in total starting with Pawn of Prophesy
Pawn of Prophecy
Garion is an orphan been raised by his Aunt Pol where he often spends his time in the kitchen washing dishes while his Aunt cooks. The farm where they live is occasionally visited by a wandering storyteller who goes by the name “Mister Wolf”. The storyteller turns out to be Garion’s great, great, great, etc…. grandfather, an immortal sorcerer who goes by the name Belgarath. When the orb is stolen Garion, his Aunt Pol and Belgarath leave the farm to pursue the thief. Joined by Durnik the blacksmith and later Barak and Silk, they follow the trail across several regions.
Queen of Sorcery
While traveling, Garion befriends an archer named Lelldorin and they travel to Lelldorin’s uncles manor. He uncovers a plot to kill the Mimbrate King Korodullin in order to start a war between two grand duchies. In the process the party gains Korodullin’s knight Mandorallen. In order to prevent this the party travels to Vo Mimbre where Garion reveals the plot. The party continues to Tolnedra and gain another member of the party, Princess Ce’Nedra. They move on to Nyissa where Garion is kidnapped and than rescued.
After learning the orb has been stolen from the thief by a sorcerer named Ctuchik, the party now travels after him through the vale of Aldur and through the haunted lands of Maragor. During which Garion learns about his purpose and to control his powers. The group moves on to Ulgoland and recruit Relg to guide than to Cthol Murgos. Here Belgarath fights Ctuchik who makes the mistake of trying to unmake the orb and in doing so unmakes himself.
Castle of Wizardry
With the orb now in their hands, the party now makes their way to the Isle of winds, the object of their journey. There they go to the Hall of the Rivan King where an ancient sword rests above the Rivan throne. Garion rather unexpectedly finds himself as the long-lost heir and betrothed to Princess Ce’Nedra. He than finds out that the Rivan King must slay the god Torak or die.
Enchanters’ End Game
The god Torak tried to persuade Garion to accept him as father and Aunt Pol as his mother, which he rejects. Torak attempts to sway Aunt Pol but Garion helps her to resist. A final battle ensues and eventually Garion kills Torak outright. They all return to Riva, his Aunt Pol gets married to Durnik and Garion finally marries Ce’Nedra.
I started reading these books as a younger teenager and at that age I loved them, these books are however best suited to teenage readers. Even as an adult looking back at what I remember, the stereotypes are a bit obvious. The best thing about Terry Brooks writing is however the humor he puts into his books and his characters, while a bit cookie-cutter, still have warmth, are still relatable and still have enough personality to make the books quite enjoyable.
Terry Brooks had a talent for drama and literature since junior college, taking part in drama productions before being drafted into the army. Once discharged Eddings attended the University of Washington in Seattle for four years, after which he worked for Boeing where he met his future wife. He went on to work as a college lecturer for seven years before moving to Denver to work in a grocery store. He wrote his first published novel the High Hunt and became convinced that been an author was his future career. After working on several unpublished novels, Eddings came across Lord of the Rings at a bookstore and when he learned it was in its seventy-eighth printing and realized that fantasy might be the key. He started with a doodle he’d draw some years earlier. He wrote the Belgariad thinking it would be a trilogy like Lord of the Rings, his publisher however told him the books were too big and convinced him to separate it into five. The Pawn of Prophecy was published in 1982 quickly followed by the other five books.
Who should read these books?
Best suited for teenagers but if you can overlook the stereotypes and simply enjoy the light-hearted humor of the books, they provide a good adventure and an enjoyable read.
I give these series a combined score of four out of five.
- Pawn of Prophecy…… Purchase here through Amazon
- Queen of Sorcery……. Purchase here through Amazon
- Magician’s Gambit….. Purchase here through Amazon
- Castle of Wizardry…. Purchase here through Amazon
- Enchanter’s End Game… Purchase here through Amazon