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Homeland: The Dark Elf Trilogy, Part 1 (Forgotten Realms: The Legend of Drizzt, Book I) (Bk. 1) Mass Market Paperback – December 1, 2005
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About the Author
R.A. Salvatore is the New York Times best-selling author of more than forty novels, including the popular Forgotten Realms series The Legend of Drizzt. He's an avid gamer, father of three, and loyal citizen of Red Sox Nation. Residence: Massachusetts
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Top Customer Reviews
Good character development (you basically see the main character grow up and how he changes and goes through trials)
Super interesting plot (one of my favorite parts about this novel)
Interesting species and creatures
Simplistic writing (the words aren't too lengthy or overbearing so if you don't like being bogged down by heavy, superfluous wording, then this is preferable)
Great for if you're new to fantasy (probably experienced readers would like it too, although I was not one)
Violence isn't overtly graphic or descriptive so more sensitive readers will probably be fine
If you're getting a physical copy of the book, mine came new and in perfect condition
Overall, hard to put down
At times scenes can be vague or confusing and you might need to reread them to understand what took place (not a problem for me but may be for others).
It's pretty good. Salvatore does excellent worldbuilding but he doesn't get bogged down with it either. I'm not even going to try to spell the name of their city right now, but it's a subterranean place that's very dark and full of stalagmites etc. The plot is kind of Game of Thronesy with a lot of noble houses competing for power, but with a twist in that it's all matriarchal and treacherous. It's not a particularly likable place and that's the point, it's a horrible place! I'm excited that Drizzt escaped from it. I'm curious to see where the story goes from here. I can't say I love it because this very much feels like the introduction to a bigger thing.
The opening book paints a seedy picture of the underground city of the Dark Elves known as Menzoberranzan - the society where Drizzt is born, and grows to become an extremely talented young warrior. While gifted with weapons, Drizzt is a failure from a Dark Elf viewpoint because he doesn't embrace the dark teachings of his family, school, and deity. Instead, he struggles deeply with his place in society and the corrupt structure that authorizes and encourages deception, great sacrifice at all costs to improve one's standing as an individual and family, and downright cruelty.
If you like your heroes to fall on the "good" side, then you will likely enjoy this fast-paced adventure where you meet amazing creatures and enter into exciting battles. If you like more of an evil character, or one that is more flawed in his ambitions, then Drizzt may be a bit too "good" for your choices.
I really enjoyed the book because you grow up with Drizzt and see the experiences that shape his unique character. The author also includes several short sections that provide a philosophical view on Drizzt's motivations, which I thought make for a strong example and reminder for younger readers.
The book is filled with some cruel scenes of abuse and lots of fighting, but the book is clean from a profanity/sex standpoint if you are concerned about young adult readers.
Homeland has everything you'd need in a fun adventure story: Wonderful setting, intriguing characters, conflicted belief systems, and some political positioning, as well. Another review says this is the 'primer on Drow culture', and that's a very accurate statement. Menzoberranzen (and the Underdark that contains it) comes to life, and I feel as if the setting really works in the story's favor. The Underdark could be considered a character of its own.
If you've never read a Forgotten Realms book, don't know who Drizzt Do'Urden is, or are just looking for a well-written story to take you away from the drudgery of your day-to-day routine, Homeland fits the bill nicely. I bought the next five books in the series after finishing this one, and I can't wait to continue the adventure!