cover image Wards of Faerie

Wards of Faerie

Terry Brooks. Del Rey, $28 (384p) ISBN 978-0-345-52347-1

Celebrating the 35th anniversary of The Sword of Shannara, which launched a 20-volume bestselling saga, Brooks sets this dual-heroine quest immediately following the events of the High Druid of Shannara trilogy. After Elf-turned-Druid Aphenglow Elessedil discovers an ancient diary recording the theft of the magical Elfstones, Brooks places his familiar Four Lands at a crucial crossroads. The science-dominated Federation led by malignant Prime Minister Drust Chazhul plots to eliminate the Druids, caretakers of the world’s magic, and raze their city of Paranor. The Druids’ Ard Rhys, Aphen’s relative Khyber Elessedil, awakens from her magical Druid Sleep to gather a familiar multiracial fantasy-quest team and seek the missing Elfstones, while Aphen remains to face Chazhul’s assaults and her own romantic crisis. This opening salvo in Brooks’s Legacy of Shannara trilogy is Tolkien-derivative, but suitably rousing and occasionally touchingly sentimental. Author tour. Agent: Anne Sibbald, Janklow & Nesbit. (Sept.)