Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Armageddon's Children by Terry Brooks

Title: Armageddon's Children
Author: Terry Brooks
Publisher: Del Rey
Publication Date: January 1, 2006
Format: Hardcover, 371 pages
Age Group: Adult
Series: The Genesis of Shannara (Book 1)

I have so many books in my personal library to read and it seems that I will never get enough time to finish them all. I cannot believe Armageddon's Children by Terry Brooks has been sitting on the shelf for so long and I just got to read it for the first time!

The first books of Terry Brooks that I ever read were the Kingdom of Landover books and from there I moved to the Shannara books. I have really enjoyed reading the various series set in Shannara over the years. Reading those stories, it was very easy to forget that Shannara takes place in the future after some catastrophic event nearly wipes out humans and technology. In the Word and the Void series and the Genesis of Shannara series, Brooks returns to the beginning of the Shannara story. When I first heard about the Word and the Void series I was actually not interested in reading it because it sounded so different from the Shannara books and I didn't realize that it was a related series. The Genesis of Shannara series bridges the gap between the Word and the Void series and the rest of the Shannara books.

Armageddon's Children is full of action from the very first sentence. Every main character is in danger and has a battle to fight just to survive much less accomplish the task they are destined to carry out. The demons and once-men control much of the world and take joy in slaughtering and enslaving humans. Much of the human population has taken refuge in compounds, although a few have taken their chances on the streets. Some have been permanently altered from exposure to unnatural toxins and radiation.

It is in this ruined world that two remaining Knights of the Word continue to fight against the Void in a futile effort to save mankind. A street kid named Hawk tries to keep his chosen family safe from the dangers that lurk around every corner even as he dreams of the day he can lead them to safety. Hidden away from the humans, the elves watch the destruction of the world and argue among themselves whether or not to even become involved in the battle.

Although it is not necessary to have read the Word and the Void series before reading Armageddon's Children, I believe it would be helpful. The events in that series lay the groundwork for the Genesis of Shannara trilogy and characters and events from that series are mentioned in this one.

Terry Brooks keeps the story moving at a fast pace and conveys the various emotions of each character strongly. With the fate of the world hanging in the balance, I'm eager to start on the next book in the series, The Elves of Cintra

2009 Reading Challenges

1st in a Series Challenge