Customer Reviews for

The Runes of the Earth (Last Chronicles Series #1)

Average Rating 4
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Will move you to tears at times...

Ten years ago, Linden Avery found herself thrust into the middle of an epic battle between absalute evil and goodness when she inadvertently followed Thomas Covenant to the Land, a magic other world he once saved but was again under assault by his enemy, Lord Foul. In t...
Ten years ago, Linden Avery found herself thrust into the middle of an epic battle between absalute evil and goodness when she inadvertently followed Thomas Covenant to the Land, a magic other world he once saved but was again under assault by his enemy, Lord Foul. In the time she spent with Covenant in that other world, she grew to love it, and him, but that love could not save him. In the final battle, he gave his life to defeat Foul, merging his life with the Arch of Time in a burst of argent flame that left only his white gold wedding band behind for Linden to hold onto. In the years since, she has cared for an adopted son, Jeremiah, who was maimed by Lord Foul and overseen the operation of a mental hospital that houses Joan, Covenant's first wife who left him to protect their son, Roger, when he became a leper. Now, Roger is grown, and demanding that Joan be turned over to him, as well as the white gold band that controls the wild magic. Linden is terrified of him and refuses, prompting the taking of her son and her own return to the Land. There she finds all her work seems to have been for naught. The Sunbane she once defeated is still gone, but the Earthpower that sustained the Land is forbidden by the Haruchai who now control the Land. History has been kept secret so that there is no memory of her or her beloved except among the Haruchai and the great horses, the Ranyhyn, and their servants, the Ramen. The former oppose her, the latter will serve her. With few other allies, some of them double minded, she must challenge time itself to fulfill the mission the spectre of her love gives her. ........................................... ................... ........................ ***** There is literature, which may tend to be dry and boring. There are fun books that are in no way literature- and then there is the Thomas Covenant series, like the white gold itself, an alloy of a book that you can thoroughly enjoy melded with great literary value. With no reservations, this can be labeled the finest book written this year, perhaps in the last several years. At times it will move you to tears, then there are moments of golden joy that will make your heart sing. Reaching the last page is something you will be eager to do, yet will come entirely too soon. Not too many fiction books have the sheer power this one does. Just do not loan it to anyone, you may never see it again. It's a keeper. *****

posted by Anonymous on January 13, 2005

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Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

If you love the Land...

The Runes of the Earth is not his best work. Linden Avery and her endless lamenting about her son Jeremiah are irritating almost to the point where you want to slap her. No joke, there has to be at least 50 pages of her boring monologue. There is some other annoying stu...
The Runes of the Earth is not his best work. Linden Avery and her endless lamenting about her son Jeremiah are irritating almost to the point where you want to slap her. No joke, there has to be at least 50 pages of her boring monologue. There is some other annoying stuff too, but...Donaldson does recapture the magic of the Land here and there, and if you loved his first trilogy, you can't help but savor those moments. This 500 page book would make a really good 300 page book. That being said, I am looking forward to the sequel.

posted by Anonymous on September 29, 2006

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  • Posted August 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Loved the Thomas Covenant series, like this one so far

    Stephen R. Donaldson finally gives us a worthy sequel to the Thomas Covenant series with The Runes of the Earth. Linden Avery's life since losing Thomas, has been a life of service to those who suffer from mental disease. She has adopted a damaged boy, who eerily resembles the HalfHand of myth. When her son is abducted, Linden must re-enter the Land in order to save him. This book chronicles her return to the Land, introduces new characters, and spends quite a bit of time reminding us what happened in the previous Covenant chronicles. Is Linden able to regain her health-sense? Is her son destined to be a prisoner of Lord Foul as well as prisoner in his own mind?

    There is a lot of set-up in this and a lot of rehashing the past. However, it remains true to the Covenant chronicles. When the end of the book came, I was upset that I did not have the next volume at hand.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2006

    After all these years...finally

    I was beyond excited when I saw this a Stephen R. Donaldson among the discount books. Then to find that it is a sequel to books I I loved years ago! I hadn't even known there was a sequel to the two Thomas Covenant series. I must say it was wonderful to be back in the Land. If you haven't read the Thomas Covenant triologies, you should. (while you wait for the next installment of this series) Then this book will be that much more special. Hurry Mr. Donaldson with the next book. We've waited so long already.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 31, 2008

    Reading the Series of Trilogy after 22 years.

    It took me thirty years, finally to start to read J.R.R. Tolkien's 'The Hobbit' and 'The Lord of the Ring' Trilogy. Now I am reading The Thomas Convenant trilogy. I recomemd any fanasty reader to Tolkien series first, then read Convenant. You more understanding from both worlds of such writers. JRR Tolkien is a Fanasty writer of the '50s and 60s, were Stephen Donaldson is of the 80s and the early part of the 21st century. Give credit were is due.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 11, 2007

    A reviewer

    I didn't want to read Donaldson's first 6 books but I got hooked, and everytime I thought I could take a breath and get my work done--my best friend would hand me the next in the series. When I finished, I was sad that I would be banished from the Land, but I was grateful that I could now catch up on my work and get some sleep (I couldn't put the books down for anything). I bumped into the latest book just browsing through B & N, bought it, gobbled it up by the weekend and went through HUGE withdrawal because I didn't have anyone handing me the next book in the series. I have been checking websites for months and read all these reviews in hopes that the next book was available. I should have checked that all books in the series were available before picking up this book. The wait is too hard. Too hard.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2005

    A promising beginning to the Last Chronicles

    At last, Donaldson returns to the series that put him on the map and left an indelible mark on the genre. Both the First and Second Chronicles recall the imagination and scope of Tolkien's work (a better comparison would be with C.S. Lewis), while adding a dimension sorely lacking (even today) in fantasy - strong, nuanced characters and themes (isolation, guilt and redemption) that would be at home in any work of literature. No other fantasy author comes close to the depth and emotion that Donaldson invests in his main characters, and this is one of the strongest aspects of the book. Again, Linden Avery is summoned to the Land - this time to save her adopted, emotionally (and physically) scarred son from the clutches of Lord Foul. The Despiser has new allies, the Land is not what is was as Earthpower itself is muted, and Linden must face these challenges without Covenant. Despite his overuse of flashbacks and exposition (one reason that his Gap Series was so long!), and his fondness for the thesaurus, Donaldson tells a good story - there promises to be at least as many startling revelations in this series as the last, and the book provides a doozy of a cliffhanger ending. Covenant fans should be happy (although newcomers should start with the first two trilogies).

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 10, 2004

    COMPELLINGLY LISTENABLE

    With unfailing narrative skills ace voice performer Scott Brick imbues this eagerly awaited story with added power. Mr. Brick is the winner of numerous awards, and one realizes why when hearing his direct, measured delivery which renders even the most fantastic stories highly believable and compellingly listenable. Although Donaldson's protagonist, Thomas Covenant, was first met two decades ago he's lost none of his power to intrigue. Nor has Donaldson lost any of his ability to write a fascinating tale. As fans know, Covenant is dead and has been for some time. Now, we find his lover and companion, Linden Avery, locked in a struggle to reclaim her kidnaped son. To do this she must return to the Land, where she finds Lord Foul up to an even more frightening sinister scheme. Listen and return to the conclusion of a story that spellbound thousands.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2004

    I love the painful HERO!!!!!

    This is a good book!!! It is not quite the caliber of the previous series. It feels a little bit jerky, but it still has the painful zing of Covenant and the elegant style of Douglas.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 20, 2004

    A Promising Beginning

    Stephen Donaldson offers a solid, entertainng continuation of a saga that many fans have been waiting over twenty years for. After throwing a curve ball in The Second Chronincles of Thomas Covenant in the 80's with his radical alterations to his previously established world, one might think he'd have trouble coming up with any surprises this time around. Don't worry! Even with all the teases and spoilers this fan pored through prior to publication, there is still plenty of ingenious plot twists, combined with familiar settings and characters sure to please returning fans. While foreshadowing may not make the ending a great surprise, it's sure to leave readers hoping they won't be waiting too long for the next installment.

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