Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Donaldson post

Donaldson dropped the ball

The most upsetting aspect of completing the Thomas Covanent series was that the concept could have been pulled off really well. The idea of a downtrodden leper entering a new world and facing a prophesy about himself is interesting. It could have worked out really very beautifully. The biggest problem for the series failure for me is the author.
I don’t like Donaldson’s style of writing at all. The vocabulary he uses is so excessively complex that he put a Thomas Covanent The Unbeliever dictionary on his website. Placing so many large words in a text is distracting to the reader. Someone shouldn’t have to reach for his or her dictionary every few minutes while reading a book. It also makes Donaldson look self- righteous.
Aside from that, I did not like his main character. I did not care about the fate of Thomas Covanent and ultimately I did not care about his journey. I feel like Donaldson was trying too hard to write a series. It felt very forced. The characters were not consistent (as seen with the lengthy, emotional speeches by the Bloodguard) and the constant prospect of the Land being a dream prevented me from investing myself in this fantasy world.
If Donaldson had relaxed a bit more when writing these books I think the result would have been much more enjoyable. The themes of war, violence, and suffering are interesting in the context he placed them but his execution fell short. I don’t believe Donaldson is a major author. For me, a major fantasy author should be an exceptional storyteller. In my opinion, Donaldson is not a good storyteller. I could not invest myself in his world, which is something I look for in fantasy writing. Donaldson dropped the ball on a trilogy that had great potential to be a lasting positive contribution to the fantasy genre.

1 comment:

Chris said...

Haven't read it, but entirely agree with the points you make about large words being distracting and also about the fact that being a storyteller is the primary job of a fantasy writer.

I hope I've addressed both in my recently published first fantasy novel, Randolph's Challenge Book One - The Pendulum Swings.