Pawn of Prophecy

It’s been a while since I wrote a book review. I finished reading this paperback a while ago. Here is my review. 🙂

Garion’s hair stood on end at the shocking conclusion of Wolf’s tale, and he could sense the others at his table shuddering. It was not at all the kind of story they had expected to hear.

Pawn of Prophecy is the first book in David Edding’s ‘The Belgeriad’ series.

It begins in Sendria with nine-year-old Garion and his Aunt Pol on Faldor’s farm. She does all the cooking for the farm and is pretty famous for her meals. All is mundane and normal until a storyteller named Mister Wolf shows. He speaks of the seven gods including the forbidden name, Torak.

There is a tale about a jewel called the Orb of Aldur, and how Torak used the Orb to sunder the earth and cause floods until the Orb struck back and melted his left hand and left side of his face.

Then came Belgarath the Sorcerer to retake the Orb. The Orb was set into the handle of a sword.

The old storyteller’s voice was now very soft as his ancient tale drew to its close. “And between them,” he said, “did Belgarath and his daughter, the Sorceress Polgara. set enchantments to keep watch against the coming of Torak… to reclaim the Orb…”

Mister Wolf leaves and several years pass. When Mister Wolf returns, he tells of Murgos and Thulls, as well as Grolims snooping around. He is on a quest of sorts, tracking something that has been stolen. The thief doesn’t leave a trail but the object does. He believes it is being taken to the Angarak Kingdoms.

Aunt Pol decides this is too important and she needs to travel with Mister Wolf and help him recover the object. She also doesn’t think it is safe to leave Garion behind in the village. Without telling Garion, who is now a teenager, why they are traveling, they hit the rode with the smith Durnik joining them.

The writing is good and the beginning is enjoyable, but the road is nowhere near as exciting as I had anticipated.

The little Party “happens” upon two others, Silk and Barak, who join them on their travels.

They go from city to town rather uneventfully, always finding no sign that the object or thief had been there before them, even though Mister Wolf assured them he could easily track it. It all seems like guess work.

And they are more or less apprehended by Captain Brendig who represents King Fulrach. At first the Party doesn’t want to go with him to see the King but decide to go because the Captain apparently knows more about them than Garion does. Everyone from Mister Wolf, to Aunt Pol, to Silk and Barak have secrets and are traveling under assumed identities. And Aunt Pol still refuses to tell Garion more about his parents and lineage although it is becoming more and more apparent there is a reason he is with them and they are protecting him. You would think a sorceress trying to hide her identity might be a bit more clever than using Pol.

I for one am tired of tales where young people especially teens are considered too young to know details about their lives that are causing their lives to be placed in jeopardy. Garion learning that Aunt Pol isn’t really his Aunt, that she’s been lying all along, doesn’t help him trust her or anyone else around him.

I haven’t decided yet if I will read the second book. We’ll see. For now I find this tale extraordinarily average.

Allen M Werner is the author of the epic fantasy series The Crystal Crux

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