cover image The Sorcerer’s Daughter: The Defenders of Shannara, Book 3

The Sorcerer’s Daughter: The Defenders of Shannara, Book 3

Terry Brooks. Del Rey, $28 (352p) ISBN 978-0-345-54082-9

Lazy writing and unremarkable characters and situations will leave readers disappointed in Brooks’s third Defenders of Shannara epic fantasy (after The Darkling Child) and 28th overall Shannara novel. At a high-level summit to be held in the city of Arishaig, leaders of the Druids and the Federation are to hold wide-ranging discussions with the ambitious goal of ending conflict among all races and governments. Paxon Leah is responsible for ensuring the safety of the event. Before the talks can advance, the meeting chamber is invaded by a ferocious creature that slaughters only the Federation attendees. Paxon and his party flee for their lives and must then try to prove they had nothing to do with the massacre. Meanwhile, Paxon’s sister, Chrysallin, has been abducted, and Leofur Rai, Paxon’s love interest and the titular sorcerer’s daughter, embarks on a dangerous quest to rescue her. The relative lack of backstory, perhaps intended to make the novel accessible to first-timers, instead makes the significance of the characters and situations obscure. (May)