After reading about 50 Dragonlance novels/anthologies, I finally came to reading 'Elven Nations'. I had always heard how the Kinslayer Wars divided the elven nation in two. I had always thought it was a civil war, and after reading this wonderfully constructed tale I see how much more of an odd affair the schism truly was.
As the war with Ergoth continues, some elves sided with the human nation. Although the dwarves were an important factor, the action of the primarily human vs. elven nations fighting was engaging enough to hold my interests. However the separation of Kith-Kanan from Sithas was always the main point of this trilogy. Yet it felt like is was a sort of 'B' story to the war. Funny enough, I think that by Niles hitting only on those details when he needed to, the reader gets the sense of how quiet and how without much debate did these twins come to see the world in different ways and in the end have to part company for good, separating the nation in the process.
It wasn't a separation due directly to war. It was one caused by quiet frustrations slowly building and festering as decades wore on. This so-called 'B' story had no major climax, just a few points of epiphany involving lumps in the characters' stomachs which the readers can see developing. It was a vastly different route than what I expected, and I was extremely glad I was able to see something beyond a direct conflict of words and blows. There is enough enjoyment of that sort coming out of the Ergoth/Silvanesti conflict. But the more important story, the seeming 'B' story, is probably what I will remember more.
I know the story is 15 years old now, but I give credit and thanks to Mr. Niles for putting this great addition to the Dragonlance history together.