The Dark Glory War
by Michael A. Stackpole
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Pretty stock standard epic fantasy. Nothing terrible about most of it, and a couple of nice culture touches like the masks. But the ending _was_ terrible; our heroes inexplicably ditch their army and go trapsing into Moria on their own (ok, its not actually called Moria, but it might as well have been) where they get their butts kicked because the badguys did not inexplicably leave their army at home. Surprise! And then the book waffles on for another 50 pages or so before finally curling up to whimper in a corner.
There's a strange pacing problem here too, where the most verbiage gets spent on bits that don't appear to be particularly important to the story, and then some of the bits that _are_ important feel a bit rushed. For example, towards the end we get a paragraph or two that says something like "I trekked across the snow for a couple of weeks, hiding from pursuers and nearly empty-handed, before I was finally rescued." What a perfect opportunity to make us feel his desperation in this amazing battle against the elements and his hunters, but instead we get this kind of casual offhand mention of it from after the fact. And then we get details about his ride home that we couldn't possibly care about.
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