The Lost Chronicles, T3: Dragons of the Hourglass Mage


The definitive volume to the Lost Chronicles Trilogy was probably also the most anticipated. Long time Dragonlance fans have been salivating at the prospect of what could be the last hurrah by the team that gave birth to the world of Dragonlance. To top it all off, this book would finally tell the events behind the scenes in Dragons of Spring Dawning from the perspective of one of the most beloved (and intriguing) Dragonlance characters: Raistlin.
This 300 some odd page book details the mage's rise to power as well as his machinations and schemes. Many of the characters we are all familiar with appears in cameos as well as lead roles: Kitiara, Lord Soth, the Innfellows, Par-Salian, LaDonna, Justarius, etc. In fact some of the characters that first appeared in Highlord Skies return - most prominently, the witch Iolanthe. I was pleasantly surprised by the narrative in this book because the first half of it felt like the sequel to Highlord Skies. Kudos to Weis and Hickman for maintaining a sense of continuity.
Much of the story weaves in and out of Spring Dawning. No doubt many fans will want to revisit Spring Dawning just to remember what went on where and when. It isn't essential but it was jolly good reminiscing and reflecting on events in Spring Dawning and tying it to Raistlin's story in Hourglass Mage. The first two entries in the Lost Chronicles saga were basically the untold tales that happened in Dragons of Autumn Twilight and Winter Night but Hourglass Mage is the only book that can be called a companion book to the original Chronicles. This book provided many answers to questions readers had in Spring Dawning. The authors managed to tie MANY plotlines in MANY books neatly into the narrative and that is no easy feat. The writing was crisp and the characters were imagined and reimagined brilliantly. Barring Tasslehoff and Palin Majere, Raistlin is probably the most well thought out character by Weis and Hickman. And in this book, they have fleshed him out extremely well. What a way to end it all.

There are a few misgivings as I read Hourglass Mage. First, it seems the writers were weighed down by continuity and seemingly disregarded some of the events in the Legends trilogy, particularly Raistlin's relationship with Fistandantilus. Weis and Hickman delved into some parts of this twisted relationship but they seem to have glossed over it and kinda tied it up (confusingly) in a rush at the end while focusing more on Raistlin's part in the end of Spring Dawning. I was disappointed that the writers did not straighten out one of the most important plotline involving Raistlin's ascent to power. The ending also seemed rushed and the book just felt too short. I'd venture to say Hourglass mage almost read like it was incomplete.
Overall, Hourglass Mage is a must-read book for any Dragonlance fan. Enjoy it while you can because over the past few months, the outlook of Dragonlance has not been favorable; comic lines halted, licensing not renewed, Wizards' non-committal attitude, etc. Maybe this is the end but then again, maybe it's just the end of a chapter...

5 nhận xét:

Parangon nói...

I love this series of books and these are no exception. What a great writer to keep you so engrossed for so many books in a series.

CROWDED WORLD nói...

Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman's DRAGONS OF THE HOURGLASS MAGE receives a fine performance by veteran narrator Sandra Burr as it tells of Raistlin Majere, who has become a wizard and travels to the lord city of the Dark Queen to work for her. When he finds that one Takhsis means to take control of all wizardly magic, forces of light and darkness line up in a desperate struggle.

The Ragnarok nói...

Dragons of the Hourglass Mage, Volume III of the Dragonlance Lost Chronicles, could also be considered the de facto Volume III of the Raistlin Chronicles. Although it follows the chronology of Dragons of Spring Dawning, it reprises and builds upon images and events from both The Soulforge and Brothers in Arms.

This is a large part of Hourglass Mage's charm. It has far more in common with The Soulforge than with Spring Dawning, but manages to evoke the best parts of both books.

The balance of narrative to dialogue is extremely good, neither one overwhelming the other. The descriptive passages are among the best that Weis and Hickman have done, and the dialogue is excellent. The story itself is notable for what Raistlin Majere can do without his magic: Thinking on his feet; gathering intelligence; playing one adversary against another.

Through it all, Raistlin's often agonizing decisions are informed by self-interest, compassion, cynicism... And a disarmingly naïve ambition that is forced by circumstances to grow up very fast.

John Belt nói...

Weis and Hickman have done it again! In what probably is their last DL book as a duo, they have provided the backstory of one of the most enigmatic characters in literature, Raistlin Majere. It helps if you are familiar with Chronicles, as the authors explain at the beginning, however, even without reading those books, this is a worthy entry into the DL world. No author writes Raistlin like Margaret Weis, and this book proves the love she has for her character. He is portrayed perfectly: bitter, angry, loyal, emotional and yet emotionless. There's even humor in the novel (Marigold Featherwinkle----not the darkest of assassin names -my personal favorite)

SUTHEIRA nói...

First, I love Dragonlance and Raistlin is my favorite character. Next, this book was a major diappointment. The two original trilogies were amazing as were the War of Souls and Mina trilogy. I also enjoyed the Raistlin chronicles as they cover more in depth the history of my favorite character and would happily send readers to Soulforge or Brothers at Arms than this borefest. I had to force myself to read this book which has never happened and was extremely disappointing.