Monday, November 5, 2007

C. S. Marks - Elfhunter: A Tale of Alterra, The World That Is

ISBN: 9781420894608 - AuthorHouse (2007)
Reviewed by Cherie Fisher for Reader Views (10/07)

When I first picked up the "Elfhunter" I had mixed feelings as I am a huge fan of the J.R. Tolkien series.  Would this be a knock-off of J.R. Tolkien's trilogy as most books that followed it have been?  I will be the first to admit that this brilliantly written book is absolutely not a knock-off.  The author does an amazing job with character development and I was also very pleased to see that the main characters were heroines.  "Elfhunter" is the first book in the trilogy and I am very much looking forward to reading the other two books in the series. 
Gaelen and her cousin, Nelwyn are on a mission for the Elf King when they come across the hideous murders of their fellow elf friends.  Determined to catch whoever committed this atrocity they follow the clues left behind.  This leads them into danger as they take on Gorgon, the Elfhunter.  Gorgon, who is in league with the dark forces, is determined to rid the world of elves and anybody else who gets in his way.  As they pursue this formidable opponent, they meet up with the elf Galador and his human friend Orogond who join them on the hunt.  Even though they doubt Orogond's usefulness on this journey as a mortal man he is able to prove himself when the time is right. 
C.S. Marks also does an excellent job in describing the terrain that the elves travel over as they visit mortal dwellings, dwarf trails under the mountains, and live in enlightened elven dwellings.  I also really enjoyed the author's character development of Galador and Orogond's horses. 
The author also does an excellent job with the appendices in the book.  She includes a glossary of terms that I found myself referring to throughout the book when I was unsure of a term.  The other appendix includes background information on Alterra that is also very helpful. 
I would highly recommend it to people who enjoy a good fantasy.  Be forewarned to not pick it up to read if you are planning to get anything else accomplished in the near future.  I had a really hard time putting "Elfhunter" down once I started reading it. 

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