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The Wishsong of Shannara (The Shannara Chronicles) Mass Market Paperback – Jul 12 1988

4.1 out of 5 stars 72 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey; Reissue edition (July 12 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345356365
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345356369
  • Product Dimensions: 11.3 x 3.6 x 17.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 249 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars 72 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #36,954 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


Praise for Terry Brooks
“Shannara was one of my favorite fictional worlds growing up, and I look forward to many return trips.”—Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia!
“If Tolkien is the grandfather of modern fantasy, Terry Brooks is its favorite uncle.”—Peter V. Brett, author of The Skull Throne
“A great storyteller, Terry Brooks creates rich epics filled with mystery, magic, and memorable characters.”—Christopher Paolini, author of Eragon

From the Trade Paperback edition.

From the Inside Flap

Horror stalked the Four Lands as the Ildatch, ancient source of evil, sent its ghastly Mord Wraiths to destroy Mankind. Only Druid Allanon held the magic power of wishsong that could make plants bloom instantly or turn trees from green to autumn gold. But she, too, was in mortal danger, and Ildatch waited for Brin to fall into his trap....

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This lengthy fantasy quest does drag its feet here and there but Brooks can’t be accused of failing to entertain. The heroic characters are creatively different, their adversaries are inventively sinister and diverse, and the imaginative geographical features provide vivid settings to portray the tense life and death confrontations between forces of good and evil.

Continuing from the second book, ‘The Elfstones’, the storyline jumps ahead about twenty years, to follow Brin and Jair, the daughter and son of that book’s hero Wil Ohmsford. These youngsters possess their own type of magic ‘The Wishsong’; by imagining wished-for phenomena to occur while singing or humming, they will manifest in reality or be perceived to manifest. This can be as innocuous as making the bud of a flower come into bloom or having hundreds of spiders crawl all over an adversary to his maddening distraction.

The goal of the heroic quest is to reach the location of the Ildatch, an ancient volume of formulae for practicing and controlling evil powers. The book must be destroyed. Doing so will accomplish the destruction of all its evil creatures and creations. This assignment is given to Brin Ohmsford who takes it on with brave determination. Setting out on a separate supportive quest (unbeknownst to Brin) is her brother Jair. The narrative shifts back and forth between the two different but parallel quests which culminate in the final chapters. The only character to reappear from the previous books is the Druid Allanon who plays a major and often mysterious role in attempting to achieve the Ohmsfords’ objectives and their very survival. Although there are a number of strange characters, the strangest is an enormous cat, Whisper, who can read minds and turn invisible! Although it is the third book of the trilogy, this book can be enjoyed independent of the others.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I honestly did like this last book of the Shannara trilogy the best. And then I thought, now wait a minute! Brooks, instead of copying Tolkien's plots, has now decided to copy his own plots! I mean, I loved that this was FINALLY more original work from Terry Brooks, there are original characters, new types of magic like the wishsong and the Ildatch that I've never seen in a book before. It was refreshing to see, Brooks did get better at originality and creativity as his writing career progressed.
However, copying the basic outline of your former plots is like making re-fried re-fried beans! (Yes, I meant to type re-fried twice!) The Ohmsford family is being called on AGAIN by, who else, the last Druid Allanon whom everyone still mistrusts, and AGAIN, they must go on a hopeless quest into the depths of the evil kingdom and AGAIN fight dark, hooded, evil creatures with only glowing points of light for eyes. It gets tiresome to do the same thing all over again with different characters!!! Sword, Elfstones, Wishsong, all are elven magic used to make something impossible happen. When one considers JUST the basic plot, one finds that all three books of the trilogy are IDENTICAL.
But, as I said, I did like this one the best. After rewriting his story three times, Brooks came up with some very original things! I mean, imagine being able to sing and make trees explode, poison rise from a dying body, and control a large cat! I also like that this book involves Brin and Jair, the children of Wil and Eretria. I didn't like how Elfstones jumped from Shea to his grandson, I was happy to see, at least briefly, some characters I was familiar with. Also, Allanon was not completely dark, angry and mistrusted this time.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Three... That's the answer given by Terry Brooks as he presents the third installment of the highly popular Shannara series. The Wishsong of Shannara sees yet another quest by a descendent of the Half-Elf family Ohmsford under the watchful eye of the great druid Allanon. Yes there is a great evil threatening the lands, yes they need to seek something out to stop it, yes Allanon arrives in Shady Vale, yes no-one trusts him... etc, etc. If it sounds like you've heard it all before, it's because you have - the whole plot, and the narrative devices are virtually identical in every way to it's predecessors. I found myself reading the opening few chapters in disbelief that the exact same things were taking place yet again with only a few aesthetic details changed. The Sword of Shannara presented an absolute wealth of potential to it's readers - characters, lands, creatures, races, a great back-story and some nice themes. But all of this just gets wasted by sequels that are nothing more than a re-hash of the same story. The legacy of the series is not enough to carry this novel. Yes we have loved the characters and the ideas that Brooks has developed, but they are only ever going to be as strong as the story and situations you put them in. If all he's going to do is the re-work the same old tired quest idea, then we're going to get bored. Wishsong is the point where that boredom kicked in for me. Brooks hides behind his winning formula at a time when the series really badly needed a massive injection of fresh ideas, and I was very disappointed.
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