Top positive review
A tale of the human heart - Absolutely riveting!
on May 2, 2003
I think what made the Legends trilogy so popular among fantasy fans were the human traits in Raistlin, Caramon, Crysania, and Tas, and the mutidimensional nature of those characters. Yes, even Tas, the ever cheerful kender, was horrified, sad, afraid, even terrified along the course of events.
What made the trilogy, though, was Raistlin. He displayed very human traits and superhero traits at the same time, a winning combination. Among his human traits, his love for Crysania was evident, even though he denied it to himself and continued to use her. His love for his brother and his longing for the companionship of their youth was also very human, another thing he lied to himself about. Even at the end, he wanted to be the one Tanis touched and warmed. Raistlin lied to himself about being human, he so much wanted to be a god.
Raistlin was also the superhero. With grim determination, he overcame fantastic obstacles. The bargain with Fistandantilus that he turned to his advantage by sucking Fistandantilus dry despite the pain, the terror, the doubt, was a big coup in the story. When he met with demons, ghouls, and all manners of foes produced by the Dark Queen or fellow magicians, it was evident he was afraid, tortured, even helpless at some points. What made him great was that he fought on and on, sometimes with the last hair of the last bit of strenght he had. We can't help but love such a character. Wouldn't we all crave to be so determined and focused?
The dark side of Raistlin made him complete. His efforts and all his power were for selfish purposes. None was more self-serving than Raistlin. A villain we loved to love and hate. So villain was he that when he displayed caring, weakness, or passion, we fell in love with him all over again, just like Caramon and Crysania.
If this book were to be rewritten for the new millenium, I would remove the old-fashioned behavior of Raistin and Crysania when they interact. Crysania is supposed to be strong, not always flushed and unsettled. And what is it with this "loss of control" if Raistlin were to make love to Crysania? And the way he rips her robes during the scene at the stream? I must say the various scenes smelled of the Dark Ages of Romantic Relationships. A love interest between those two had a lot of potential that was not well developed.
All in all, I could not put the Legends trilogy down. I lacked sleep for a long time while reading these books. I have read them some years ago, and the same feelings appeared on the second reading.
A must-read for the genre. The human heart has its place even in such fantastic places as Krynn.