The Saga of the Runelords is written in the finest tradition of Tolkien and other works that rise above the fantasy genre to special and individual heights.
Now the epic story continues: at the end of Worldbinder, Fallion Orden, son of Gaborn, was imprisoned on a strange and fantastic world that he created by combining two alternate realities. It's a world brimming with dark magic, ruled by a creature of unrelenting evil who is gathering monstrous armies from a dozen planets in a bid to conquer the universe. Only Fallion has the power to mend the worlds, but at the heart of a city that is a vast prison, he lies in shackles. The forces of evil are growing and will soon rage across the heavens. Now, Fallion's allies must risk everything in an attempt to free him from the wyrmling horde.
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The breathless third installment of Farland's second Runelords quartet opens with the cliffhanger from 2007's Sons of the Oak: flameweaver wizard Fallion Orden, son of the Earth King, is trapped by fiendish Lord Despair in a savage new world Fallion himself had made by melding two realities. Fallion has rejected "endowments," transfers of power or skill that leave the donor drained of the attribute they bestow on the recipient, but his lover, Rhianna, her foster sister, warrior maiden Talon, and Talon's noble idol, the Emir Tuul Ra, accept numerous endowments, vowing to pay any price to rescue Fallion from Rugassa, where torture is an art. Oscillating between lurid depictions of blood-soaked vistas and heroic tales of noble adolescent saviors, Farland attempts to leaven the violence with enchanting parallel-world landscapes and charming minor characters, but the atmosphere overall is unrelentingly gloomy. Nonetheless, this series promises to continue as long as stalwart-stomached readers can keep turning its grisly pages.