Chainfire – The Sword of Truth Part 3

With all of those distractions, Richard still believes in his heart that he must continue his search for Kahlan.

But with so many things pulling him from his search, trying to convince him that she is a figment of his imagination, even he begins to think that maybe, just maybe, he could be wrong about her.

 

Appraisal

Perhaps we got spoiled. Perhaps we expected too much. Perhaps we’re too critical. Hmm. On that last point, we don’t think so.

Sometimes it is fine to leave a question or two unanswered when a novel ends and the last page is turned. It is an effective way to get the reader interested in the next book in the series. However, when the events that are left open stack up to where the book has an incomplete feel, there may be something wrong with that decision.

Major characters are put into serious situations, life and death struggles, and the novel ends without any resolution whatsoever. A literary choice? Apparently so. We counted the open scenarios and came up with no less than ten different issues that were left unresolved – a staggering statement to a lack of conclusion.

When added to the extremely wordy, highly-detailed accounts of a character or locations past, emotions or qualities, it is hard to conclude that the story flows smoothly. It does not. The action will at one point be flowing easily, and then the author sticks in two, three, even four or more pages of background details for whatever reason. The first couple are not too bad, but when they keep recurring, it gets to be a bit on the boring side – and a great place to take a break.

We said that perhaps we were spoiled, that was because the episodes of the series ‘The Legend of the Seeker’ (based on this author’s series – ‘The Sword of Truth’) all seem to end in a conclusion to the major events brought into play in each episode, except of course for the underlying quest to free the world of the Keeper. Even those episodes have a logical end and allow you to feel that it is over and you want to see what happens next. There was no such feeling when this book ended, unfortunately.

As was said, the story was excellent, but the author pays too much attention to the minutia, and leaves too many questions unanswered. Even so, the book still scores well because of the author’s consistency with the other books in the series, the dramatic build-up between the individual characters, and the realistic feel of the overall scenario.