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The First King of Shannara: The Shannara Series, Prequel | [Terry Brooks]

The First King of Shannara: The Shannara Series, Prequel

In this prequel to The Sword of Shannara, in which many details of the Four Lands' history are revealed, Druids, horrified by the misuse of magic, have eschewed it in favor of science. But Bremen the Druid studies magic, and becomes an outcast on its account. Bremen discovers that an invincible army of trolls are fast conquering all that lay to their south. Before them come the Nazgul-like Skull Bearers, disfigured and transformed Druids who have fallen prey to the dark arts.
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Publisher's Summary

In this prequel to The Sword of Shannara, in which many details of the Four Lands' history are revealed, Druids, horrified by the misuse of magic, have eschewed it in favor of science. But Bremen the Druid studies magic, and becomes an outcast on its account. Bremen discovers that an invincible army of trolls are fast conquering all that lay to their south. Before them come the Nazgul-like Skull Bearers, disfigured and transformed Druids who have fallen prey to the dark arts. And at their head is an evil archmage and former Druid called Brona. Bremen realizes that if the peoples of the Four Lands are to evade slavery, they will have to unite. But to defeat Brona, they will need a mighty weapon: the Sword of Shannara.

©1996 Terry Brooks; (P)2003 Books on Tape, Inc.

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  •  
    Lucero Mitchell Houston, Texas United States 08-23-08
    Lucero Mitchell Houston, Texas United States 08-23-08 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A True Pleasure"

    I have read and listened to a great number of books, this book in particular is one of my favorites. I find the desire to listen to it several times a year. I find that Scott Brick has a voice like no other clear, strong, precise, PERFECT.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kristin Monee, IL, USA 07-09-04
    Kristin Monee, IL, USA 07-09-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A winning combination!"

    I was drawn to this author by my desire to listen to Scott Brick... what a find it turned out to be... every book in this series, read by Brick is simply outstanding... Brooks draws a picture and Brick fills in the color! You won't regret this purchase - or any of the others read by Brick.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert Eric Koch MONTEVALLO, AL, US 09-14-13
    Robert Eric Koch MONTEVALLO, AL, US 09-14-13 Member Since 2010

    Tell us about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Precitable and Fun, a Typical Brooks Fantasy"
    Any additional comments?

    All of Terry Brook’s novels, at least the Shannara novels, follow the same basic template. You have a character who finds himself (or herself), typically through circumstances beyond his control, suddenly thrust into a quest with an assortment of companions of varying races to travel to ____ in order to find the mythical _____ so that he or she can usually do something to save the world. As a result, most of Brook’s novels tend to feel similar and are of a similar tone with characters that stray very little from the norm. That said, once you lower your expectations and accept the fact that these stories aren’t likely to stray very far from the template, this extended series can be quite enjoyable, particularly if you enjoy good, escapist, low risk fantasy (the diametric opposite of George RR Martin). As a prequel to Terry Brook’s original Shannara series, this book feels quite at home and does round out the story, the world, and the events of those first three novels. There’s some novelty here, revisiting familiar territory and a few familiar characters, and a decent adventure. As an audiobook, expertly narrated, this presentation is great, escapist fun, well worth a month's credit.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sean Mountain View, HI 96771 07-07-04
    Sean Mountain View, HI 96771 07-07-04 Member Since 2003
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    "Excelent Addition to the series"

    I don't find the detailed descriptions and background uninteresting as others have reviewed, it helps make a full bodied story. Characters are well developed, and the story fits nicely as a prequel to the series. Listening was a true pleasure.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Annas Chicago, IL, USA 05-10-04
    Annas Chicago, IL, USA 05-10-04 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Masterpiece"

    I read it before reading the Sword of Shannara since I already played its adventure game version on the PC a few years ago and finished it.

    The novel was simply a masterpiece. I could not believe how much emotions were involved in the story. It kept me on the edge of my seat (or bed :) ) most of the time. It's got wars on the scale of the wars in Return of the King and bigger. If you like Lord of the Rings, you'll love this novel.

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shane Lima, OH, United States 10-14-13
    Shane Lima, OH, United States 10-14-13 Member Since 2012
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    "Terry Brooks, Literary Genius!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    The first Terry Brooks novel i read was The Sword Of Shannara and i was forever attached to the four lands. Of course i immediately got my hands on all of the books i could! The First King really takes a good look at the past leading up to the series. Alot of prequels do not link themselves with the future of the series as greatly as First King. Its a wonderful read and an emotionally/intellectually stimulating book/series!


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Id have to go with Bremen of course! He's the "dark avenger" style character that everyone looks up to yet hesitates to back at the same time! Always thinking of others over himself even if sometimes it doesnt seem like it.


    What about Scott Brick’s performance did you like?

    Consistent with the characters voices, thats a big plus! Also, a good range between them, very distinctive emoting and you could almost feel that he was enjoying reading the book as much as we loved listening!


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Of course!!


    Any additional comments?

    Wonderfully written book being wonderfully read! Cant ask for more!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Megan Colorado Springs, CO, United States 04-19-12
    Megan Colorado Springs, CO, United States 04-19-12 Member Since 2007
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    "I could not get into it"
    Would you try another book from Terry Brooks and/or Scott Brick?

    I love Terry Brooks and I love it but I personally could not get invested in the story


    Any additional comments?

    I know this is suppose to be an amazing book and I normally like these kind of books but this was really not worth my time

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Howard Springdale, AR, United States 04-26-04
    Howard Springdale, AR, United States 04-26-04 Member Since 2003
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    "Outstanding"

    This and all of Terry Brooks books a wonderful, I just wished that all of the unabridged versions of his book were on audible. Well they have been getting more, but I highly recomend this book.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    W Marina, CA, United States 06-13-04
    W Marina, CA, United States 06-13-04 Member Since 2003
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    "Meandering..."

    I listened to the audio version of Firstling of Shannara, and while I enjoyed the narration, I found the story a little boring and predictable. For some reason the plot failed to grab me. There are elves. There is a dwarf. There is a druid muttering some mystic mumbo-jumbo. They are out to find/forge the sword of Shannara, and everyone is reluctant. Reluctant to become involved, reluctant to believe, reluctant to wield the sword properly. Reluctant to fall in love.

    Relationships are passionless and handled poorly. The three major romantic relationships featured in this book are quite dysfunctional. The only person I actually really liked was Bremen. I felt sorry for him and the pain/sacrifice he bore at times. But the rest of the characters had as much personality as department store mannequins.

    Look. If a story is going to have romance in it. Make it ROMANTIC. The romances were hasty and very contrived.

    Not quite up to par with the rest of the books. And what?s with all the female character?s being called ?girl?? The author refers to Preia as ?the elf girl? and Merrith as the ?druid girl? but the male characters are all called ?men? come on now. These characters are WOMEN. Lets call them such, shall we?

    The narrator was excellent 'tho. Good job with what he had to work with.

    10 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kenneth Beverly, NJ, USA 04-20-04
    Kenneth Beverly, NJ, USA 04-20-04
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    "Another Good One"

    Another good book. Would like to listen to the whole series in unabridged format.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
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