The Illearth War

The Illearth War

4.5 22
by Stephen R. Donaldson
     
 

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The second volume in the epic Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever.
Thomas Covenant found himself once again summoned to the Land. The Council of Lords needed him to move against Foul the Despiser who held the Illearth Stone, ancient source of evil power. But although Thomas Covenant held the legendary ring, he didn't know how to use its strength, and

Overview

The second volume in the epic Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever.
Thomas Covenant found himself once again summoned to the Land. The Council of Lords needed him to move against Foul the Despiser who held the Illearth Stone, ancient source of evil power. But although Thomas Covenant held the legendary ring, he didn't know how to use its strength, and risked losing everything....

Editorial Reviews

Gale Research
"Covenant is Donaldson's genius," John Calvin Batchelor of the Village Voice believes, "and I would be delinquent if I didn't say that although Donaldson writes dense and strangled prose, Chronicles has, at its heart, an unqualifiedly sublime idea--that the last shall be first."

Because of the strangeness of the Land and his place in it, Covenant finds it hard to believe it even exists. He calls himself "The Unbeliever." "He doesn't quite believe," McClellan states, "that these adventures are happening to him in a land of giants, dwarfs, strange animals, sorcerers and evil spirits. . . . The fact that Covenant doesn't quite believe in himself and that he is not a hero born and bred may be helping him to find a readership among Americans, who are also, perhaps, a bit dubious about their taste in fantasy."

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307818676
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
05/16/2012
Series:
The First Chronicles: Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever , #2
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
544
Sales rank:
27,288
File size:
3 MB

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The Illearth War (First Chronicles Series #2) 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 22 reviews.
TimeChaser More than 1 year ago
A better second novel Once I had finished the first book, Lord Foul's Bane, I was very eager to jump right into this one. The opening chapters are crucial, helping to make Covenant more sympathetic as we see his utter isolation from human contact as everyone around him fears him as if he were the worst evil in the world. I think what helped make this book even better was the introduction of Hile Troy, a character who is in every way Covenant's opposite: brave, bold, and ready to accept the Land without question and come to its defense - a much more heroic character. But when the situation begins to spiral out of his control, his presence becomes a mirror through which the reader comes to understand that, no matter how much we may want Covenant to be the hero of the Land, his rejection of it and of his untapped power is his only way to ward off total despair if he were to take responsibility and yet still fail. But with Foul pulling the strings from behind the scenes, it seems that no matter what path Covenant chooses, he is doomed to remain in despair. I believe that is the real attraction of this series. We want to continue to follows the lives and trials of Covenant and the people of the Land in the hope that one day everything will work out, but knowing that such hope may not be possible. I think people who give up on this series too soon are missing out on a rich and complex story.
eewdad More than 1 year ago
I read the first three books when I was a kid back in the late 70's and bits and pieces of it would pop in my head once in awhile over the years. I have rediscovered why it left an impression on me. The main character leaves a lot to be desired...definately not your normal hereo. He whines and blunders through events, he hurts people, yet as the series progresses, you start to pull for him. The Land is rich and full, the people who live there are good. The character development is very indepth for many of the players in the stories. A very worthwhile read.
SuspenseJunky More than 1 year ago
The author is very good at weaving a nice tale, but I wish he didn't think that he had to use words that make you keep a dictionary nearby. I'm all for learning new words, but let's keep it to a new one every few pages instead of three or four per page. It makes it hard to get through and keep your sanity. If you don't mind the big words, his Thomas Covenant series is very good. I will say that Covenant can be a little whiny at first, but it's still good.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Wow! I read Lord Foul's Bane with pleasure and happiness. I then read The Illearth War with passion and excitment! The first Covenant book introduced the readers to, the Land. In this sequal, Donaldson takes it to a completly new level during Covenant's second journey there. Not only do you fall in love with the features of this amazing world, but also with the people. The Elohim, the bloodaurd, the Lords, the giants and thier tragic story. But specificly High Lord Elena, Lord Morhom, Hile Troy, and Bannor. A must read for all who enjoy Covenant's anti-heroic attitude and mindblowing battle scenes. Two words: READ IT!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think people are a little off track as to who is the hero. Covenant in my opinion is just the catalyst for the true heros of the land. Read this book and you will see that the real heros are the ordinary people who as an army go to extraordinary levels of courage and endurance to protect their land from the evil that besets it. The forced marches into battle endured by the Eoward, the unending strength and dedication of the Bloodguard, the indomitable personality of Saltheart Foamfollower, the skill and wisdom of the Lords council all add together to defeat Lord Fouls minions. Covenant just happens to be in the right place at the wrong time for his self destructive contributions. This is IMHO the truth of the book.
Anonymous 8 months ago
So this series is written horribly with details on everything except what you would like to picture. Nevertheless I wanted to try my best to get through it but after the authors blatant perversion in book 2 I am done. No amount of recommendations could make me want to struggle through more after reading about a "hero" rapist who wants his own daughter.
R_Hinshaw More than 1 year ago
I like that after a first book in which Donaldson challenges his readers with a protagonist not easy to like or identify with, he presents a possible alternative who would seem more palatable in Hile Troy. I like how Covenant is confronted with the legacy of his past crime in the person of the new High Lord. And how High Lord Kevin's choice still haunts the Lords so many generations later. The First Chronicles of Thomas Covenant is the best thing I have ever read. I can't rank favorites between the three volumes. They are all of a piece.
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