Dragons of Autumn Twilight
Dragonlance Chronicles Vol 1
Margarent Weis & Tracy Hickman
Lifelong friends, they went their separate ways. Now they are together again, though each holds secrets from the others in his heart. They speak of a world shadowed with rumors of war. They speak of tales of strange monsters, creatures of myth, creatures of legend. They do not speak of their secrets. Not then. Not until a chance encounter with a beautiful, sorrowful woman, who bears a magical crystal staff, draws the companions deeper into the shadows, forever changing their lives and shaping the fate of the world.
No one expected them to be heroes.
Least of all, them.
I first read this book and the series it’s part of when I was in my teens, which is a long time ago now, but I remember it fondly, and it has held up well through a recent re-read. There are many good characters in this book, and of such a varied sort it’s hard to imagine a reader not being able to find a favourite – mine is Tasslehoff Burrfoot, the Kender who fears nothing and who has an unfortunate habit of finding other people’s possessions in his pockets.
Characters are what make this book, every one of them is different and distinct and well-developed, and none is fully black or white, they all have their flaws and their strengths.
The environments are equally as well-developed as the characters, to the extent that with some careful reading an artistic person could map much of the journey taken by the companions. I certainly had no trouble picturing the places Tanis, Tasslehoff and friends found themselves.
If there is one area the book lacks, and this is the reason for me only giving it 3.5*, it’s a lack of any real sense of danger. At no time did I truly feel as though the companions were likely to lose, nor that any of them would be seriously hurt; this is in part because the one character in the book who is under-developed is Verminaard, the principal bad guy in Vol 1. Thankfully this is not a single book but the 1st volume in a series and the overarching story lends hope that the danger to the companions will be better displayed in the next book.
If you like fantasy, this is most likely a book and a series you will enjoy, especially if you’re interested in great and often conflicted characters.