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Title: The Summoning
Series: The Return of the Archwizards
Author: Troy Denning
Rating: 1.5 of 5 Stars
Format: Kindle digital edition
Galaeron, an elf, is on patrol guarding the crypts from tomb robbers. He and his band come across a group of humans who are invading, but not stealing anything. Galaeron casts a spell that somehow interacts with another spell and it opens a hole in a magic barrier, that a wizard was on the other side of. On the other side were also magical creatures who use magic and live on it.
Now Galaeron and others must trust Melegaunt the Netherese wizard that he can return the floating city of Shade and destroy the Phaerimm before they destroy the last stronghold of the elves.
Only nothing is ever simple. Galaeron has been infected with dark magic and must fight every negative thought as it twists him closer and closer to becoming his own evil shadow. Elminster the Mage is convinced that Melegaunt has much deeper plans than saving Evereska. The Elf Lords are being bull headed and listening to no one, thus allowing Evereska to be besieged and over run.
Netherese are just bad news. I learned this from my jaunt with Erevis Cale and I'm pretty sure that pretty boy/drow Drizz't and Company had some bad times with them as well. So to read about them as potential saviors just smacks of backstabbing and double dealing waiting to happen. That is one of the problems with reading Forgotten Realms books rather randomly like I do. I know things that the characters don't, I have seen the future written in stone and sometimes, just like Paul Maud'dib, I get lost in the Timestream.
However, this book was a hot mess. At first I thought it was because I started this when pretty tired and hence my faculties weren't all on campus. But since this took several days I realized it was the author and not me. It was rushed. Tons of action but certain events were given one sentence to happen then referred to for paragraphs and paragraphs. One example: in a battle scene Galaeron, Melegaunt and the others are on a mountain side and before I know it, they're at the top of the mountain fighting. I go back to see what happened and somewhere there was a landslide that allowed them easy access to the top but I couldn't see how this happened or why or when. Lots of instances of the characters making connections and me being "huh? where did that come from?" from it.
The changing viewpoints didn't work for me either. Usually it isn't a problem but this time around it was. It was random, just to show what was going on. We didn't necessarily stick with specific characters beyond Galaeron and Company and made for plot whiplash, especially when someone is referred to once and then 3 chapters later we get a whole chapter about what they're doing.
While I'm not a huge of Drizz't the Drow, I'm even less of a fan of Elminster so his inclusion didn't do it for me either.
I hate to say this, but it wasn't organically put together. I don't expect a lot, or very much at all to be honest, from Forgotten Realms books but I do expect to be able to follow along. I am not in my dotage yet. I'll be reading the rest of the trilogy just to see how the plot resolves, but my goodness, I sure hope the cohesiveness of the writing gets better.