Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Unholy: Haunted Lands, Book III (The Haunted Lands) Mass Market Paperback – February 3, 2009
"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover," illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Learn more
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The plot of this book, being that it takes place approximately 100 years after book 2, follows in the footsteps of the second novel but not as closely as one may expect for a third novel in a trilogy. There are a couple separate plot elements in this book such as a plan by Szass Tam that may have much larger ramifications than anyone could possibly guess, the Brotherhood of the Griffon seeking to expand on their reputation, and several elements of revenge that add a grittiness and harshness to the story. There are also a couple subplots sprinkled in to give the story an extra elements; things such as loyalties that are continually challenged, what will come of the power-hungry zulkirs, and lastly if Szass Tam's plan succeeds what will become of Thay. That is quite a lot to cram into one novel, however, I never felt like Mr. Byers lost control of the story or any plot point for that matter. It flowed well and the break up of the chapters, and sections within the chapters was spot on to allow the story unfold on its own. I have always enjoyed when a story is allowed to develop on its own, versus being dragged along by the characters. I will admit I was a little confused at the overall story line of this novel, mostly because it seemed so much different than the previous two plot wise. I would even go so far as to say that this novel could have been a standalone novel and it would have been just fine. In the end though, just basing this book on itself and not the entire trilogy, I enjoyed it. Plenty of action and more character development than I expected.
Even with the time jump, the majority of the characters in this book are the same as have been present in the first two. Characters such as; Bareris, Aoth, Mirror, Szass Tam, and the remaining zulkirs (Neveron, Samas, Lauzoril, and Lallara). Being that the plot is so chalk full, I was amazed at how many different characters Mr. Byers included in this book, most of which had some type of character development, which is always a plus for me. There are several things I enjoyed about the characters, some of which I can't really talk about due to spoiler potential, but even with half the characters being `undead' there was a certain realness to their emotions, decisions, and faults. I also appreciated that for the most part, each character spoke with a unique voice. Although, there were a couple times in the story where it as hard to discern just who was talking because there were three or more people in a scene and it was just a line of dialogue and no indication of who said it. There is a solid mix of characters, with some new additions as well such as Jhesrhi and Gaedynn who were able to steal several scenes. There are several memorable characters in this book that I hope to read more about in the future.
A couple criticisms about this novel:
1 - As I mentioned above with the dialogue and a couple times not knowing who said what. When it happened it simply stopped the flow of the book and forced me to reread the section (sometimes several times) to figure it out who said it. Granted it's a minor thing, but when it happened it was rather annoying.
2 - I know this book features a war, but the number of massive battles got redundant after awhile. If for no other reason than a traveling army has a finite number of people that can be killed. I liken it to movies where the actor never has to reload his gun, he just keeps shooting. After awhile I wanted to see a more intimate scenario just for a change of pace.
3 - This has no bearing on the author, but with the past couple of Wizard of the Coast novel there seems to be an exorbitant number of typos. It's disappointing to have to reread sections or sentences because of poor editing. I expect better from WotC.
Some things I liked about this novel:
1 - I have always enjoyed novels about Thay and this one is no different. It's a unique area in the Realms and to get an in-depth look at it is always a treat. The amount of undead and the variety made for interesting scenes. Mr. Byers certainly used the setting to his advantage with this one.
2 - The flow, pacing, and prose of this novel is top notch. The flow is just enough that the story moves forward at a good pace but doesn't seem to lose anything due to that. It is never a slow pace, there is always something happening on the next page that begs the reader to turn the page to find out.
3 - Even with the fast paced plot, the interesting and memorable characters make this novel. Mr. Byers takes his characters through many things in this novel. A couple of the characters end the novel in places I certainly wasn't expecting so that was a bonus for me. This is far from a clichéd novel.
I was expecting a continuation of the story from the first two books, so I was a little surprised at just where this story went yet once I finished it I am okay with it. It is hard to classify this as the final novel of the trilogy based on that, but for a single book I quite enjoyed it. As I said at the start there are some fans of the Forgotten Realms who, because of the new 4th Edition rules, will shun this book. Being that I am not a gamer those new rules really don't have that big of an impact on me. I just read the novels. Thus far I have seen nothing in the `new' Realms that will make me stop reading, in fact I think the changes may be a positive things and am looking forward to see where it goes. I truly believe that fans of the Forgotten Realms should read this as I believe they will enjoy it. I know I did and will be sure to recommend the series to fans.
On the good side: there are some plot changes I didn't see coming. I enjoyed the ending, the overall story and found the characters interesting.
I had 3 big problems with this book. First: Szass Tam, I think he was the most interesting character in this series and yet he is just a small part in this book. And, mostly relegated to the last few chapters. Second: To many battles, I like a good battle scene but this book was one fight or battle scene after another (I think I counted 4 major battles and at least 5 minor battles). Third: To many new undead monsters, I felt like I was reading a Monster Manual at one point. I know the series is about the undead but after introducing dozens and dozens of new undead monsters one book at a time it's get a little repetitive by the third.
My final review: If you're a fan of the Forgotten Realm's books I think you will greatly enjoy this series. The last book just doesn't have that great pacing and character development the first two had, but I think you will be pleased with the overall story and conclusion.
The rest of the book leading up to the final battle is good, if only slightly less engaging than the previous two books. Still, the way in which the author fits in the 90 year time gap between Books 2 and 3 and the way he quickly brings the primary characters back together and introduces the overarching plot is done in a way that gets the story off to a sprinting start.
Byers has proved to me that he's an adept writer, and I certainly won't shy away from his other Realms novels. Likewise, I'd be happy to recommend this series to others - not just to DnD players, but also to any general fantasy enthusiast.
This is the stuff of great Sword and Sorcery.