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Windwalker: Starlight & Shadows, Book 3 Mass Market Paperback – Apr 1 2004

19 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Wizards of the Coast; 3 edition (April 1 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786931841
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786931842
  • Product Dimensions: 10.8 x 2.7 x 17.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 159 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #322,035 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

Elaine Cunningham is the author of the Songs & Swords series of novels, the Counselors & Kings trilogy, and Evermeet for Wizards of the Coast. Cunningham also hit the New York Times best-seller list with Dark Journey, her Star Wars¨ novel title for Del Rey.

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Liriel stood at the rail of Leaping Narwhal, the sea breeze on her face and her white hair streaming behind her. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars

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By Trey Wait on Nov. 26 2003
Format: Hardcover
Elaine, Elaine, Elaine... What happened? This series started off so strong (Daughter of the Drow), then got a bit wobbly (Tangled Webs), now it's tipped completly over (Windwalker).
I love this character of hers, Liriel. The unusual drow with a taste for exploration and adventure. I like the fact that she's less diabolicly evil, more vitriolicly sarcastic with a soft heart for the lesser creatures. But Liriel seems to digress in this book.
At times during Windwalker Liriel seems to have forgotten what she's learn in her previous adventures. She forgets that she loves Fyodor (even though it scares her), that her killing people upsets Fyodor, that she really DOSEN'T love Lloth, and that another goddess has showed serious interest in recruting her. Meanwhile the maidens of the Promanade Temple seem to have forgotten the risks she took, the fighting she did for them, and the sacrifices she's made.
This book felt really rushed, 'jumpy' as someone else said. Too much story packed into too small a book equals somewhat shallow characters and a story that feels paper thin. Don't get me wrong it's not a bad read, just... I was hoping for so much more.
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Format: Hardcover
This book used a different writing style then most of Elaine Cunningham's books. A don't think I really cared for that part. The book often seemed jumpy and characters were brought into the book, and others taken out far to quickly for me. One chapter may be about one thing, and then near the end an entire different topic jumps into the picture. Perhaps if I was more prepared for this it would have been easier. Until page 250 or so I was easily lost, and didn't find it a very big "page turner".
The second downfall for me was that I had not read book II in about a year. Leaving me lost when certain characters were re-introduced. Unlike R.A Salvatore who tends to go into a paragraph of re-introductions to help you along, Elaine leaves it up to you to figure it out. I used to think the 'flashback' "last we saw him..." type effect was a waste of pages, now I believe its a good addition to fill the years gap from book to book. Elaine could have used that method to keep me up-to-date, but she didn't. So I recommend re-reading the last book to make this one a little more interesting and easier to read.
Now, on to the good stuff. I was very happy to see the odd twists Elaine used for her wizard drow against her former godess Lolth. The symbolic battle between three gods over a single human was a neat addition to the book. Leaving you wondering "what happens next" with the god's struggle to get the favor of Liriel. Her battle with her former priestess adversary ended in a suprising result. Showing that the most intelligent drow can understand how easily they can fall prey to "vengence" -- the drows worse enemy (and usual cause for death).
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Format: Hardcover
Whereas the previous two books were light, funny and enlightened us on the inner-workings of Menzoberranzan and Skullport, Windwalker focusses on the intimacy between Liriel and Fyodor, Liriel coming to grips with human notions of honor and trust, and the consequences of Liriel's previous actions.
The story is intriging, with a constant sense of haste and frustration similar to the fifth Harry Potter book. The return of many characters, including a number of the 7 sisters, were expertly woven throughout. One new character, Sharlarra, an elven mage-thief, may in fact be poised for a series of her own. The ending to Windwalker is heartwrenching, but well written.
Windwalker is definitey the end the Starlight and Shadows series - there may be additional stories with Liriel in them, but they will be very different. I would recommend this book to any who have read the previous two, with the understanding that this well written book is darker in tone and different in its overall orientation and writing style.
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Format: Hardcover
Anyone expecting more of the story told in the previous two books is doomed to disappointment - Windwalker is a radical departure in style, tone, and content - a book of transition. While some things remain the same, the main character has changed completely. Much was lost. More was gained.
The lighthearted, whimsical scripting, and elegant turns of phrase that made the first two books a joy to read are often absent, which harms the flow of the narrative early in the book. In their absence, the many changes of perspective make the pace seem forced. More seriously, the deft characterisations are now imperfectly conveyed.
In the prelude of the first book, in a handful of pages, Mrs. Cunningham managed to evoke the whole essence of the dark elven race, Gromph and Liriel in particular. She set a scene, then explored it through the deliciously calculating eyes of the evil old drow. But in Windwalker, scenes in the Underdark do not explore new territory, are too far from the action, and lack the immediacy that would have made them relevant. A single scene of the spying archmage in some interesting and relevant setting might have served better. The same holds for other "distant" perspectives. Some enemies could have appeared just as well spontaneously, in context with others. Meanwhile not enough is done to explain odd actions, like Azar or Sharlarra's obsessions with Liriel. A few subtle signs of restlessness or dissatisfaction in Sharlarra to Danilo's perceptive gaze when she first appears might have made a beginning. Mrs. Cunningham crafted complex new characters, but then suffered from a difficulty in getting them across.
But ultimately, the book isn't about any of them. Windwalker is the story of Liriel Baenre, and this is where it reigns supreme. In Windwalker, Mrs.
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