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    Default Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    Exactly what the title says. Are the books good? Are they worth the time spent not reading something else?
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    Is this about the entire series?

    I found the first three books to be quite interesting with a fascinating setting. The next three ones were the first that were written and are not quite as good, but I still found them to be entertaining enough. The third set is four books and I think they really drop in quality and are not very good. Things start to feel really repetitive. I also red the fourth set, which is three books again, and with those I felt like I had really waste my time. The series is just going in circles, never getting anywhere.

    For anyone interested, I think book 1 to 3 are really worth checking out, and if you want more at that point, book 4 to 6 are also not that bad. But I really don't think there's any point in continuing after that.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    If I'm reading this right, this is...ten whole books about Drizzt?


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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Palanan View Post
    If I'm reading this right, this is...ten whole books about Drizzt?

    According to this, there are 36 all together. And that doesn't include the other books that intersect with the Drizzt series like the Cleric Quintet and The Sellswords.

    I think I read up through book 27.

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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    Wow, I've only made it up to 10 myself.

    As for whether or not it's worth it...it's hard to say. The quality tends to vary from book to book. Do you like descriptive combat? Because there's a whole ton of that. I know there were some books where I would glaze over 3-4 pages at a time, because it was just more combat.

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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    I stopped after The Pirate King (book 22, counting Sellswords as part of it).
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    Salvatore's a competent writer, but clearly hasn't had his heart in it for the last dozen books or more. There's a lot of really decent ideas running through the series, but these are buried in a lot of filler and gunk.

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    Wulfgar's PTSD after being rescued is extremely well done, and the deliberate contrast between Drizz't and Enteri is equally good.




    As others have said, read the first six in chronological order, then only continue if you're really invested in the characters.

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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    Quote Originally Posted by JadedDM View Post
    Wow, I've only made it up to 10 myself.

    As for whether or not it's worth it...it's hard to say. The quality tends to vary from book to book. Do you like descriptive combat? Because there's a whole ton of that. I know there were some books where I would glaze over 3-4 pages at a time, because it was just more combat.
    Definite agreement on skimming.

    As for the large "is it worth it?", I mainly read them to try to get through most of the Forgotten Realms books (a still incomplete task). To me, thy have their ups and downs. It does seem like some plot points keep cropping up again and again. To me, they got interesting again around the Sellswords trilogy (which I was wrong about, it is included in the 36 count on that page) where Artemis and Jarlaxle have a trilogy on their own. Then 17-26 deal with a number of changes to the status quo. 17-19 deal with the rise of and solidification of an Orc kingdom. 20-22 deal with tying up some loose ends. My personal favorite of the series, 21, The Pirate King, deals with the fall of Luskan and the result of everyone's good intentions leading them to ruin. In fact, 17-22 really show that while some of the characters may have plot armor the setting and characters around them definitely do not and despite their intentions there are things they can't stop. 23-26 deal with the fallout from The Pirate King and the destruction of Neverwinter leading up to 4E.

    I mainly haven't read any after 29 because I just haven't gotten around to getting the books and reading them. At some point I probably will.

    Quote Originally Posted by hamishspence View Post
    I stopped after The Pirate King (book 22, counting Sellswords as part of it).
    Out of curiosity, why did you stop there?

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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    It was around the transition to 4e when they started to become hard to find in the shops.

    Books 4-6 (Icewind Dale) are a bit different in re-released format from their original versions. Drizzt was de-aged from 200+ to 50+, and each section had the italicised Drizzt commentary that all books published after the Icewind Dale trilogy, have.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    I look on them like I do redwall abbey. They are good books, but they get repetitive after awhile. I actually own the first 12-15 or so, not sure precisely. I only reread the first 6 and even then mainly the first three. And yeah, im pretty sure salvatore is only writing them still to avoid seeing some other author take it over as he legally doesnt own the character. And as far as the cleric quintet goes (awesome series, first set I ever read in this universe) the series has no crossover with drizzt, however, there are times where various characters from it appear in drizzt stories. So its handy for knowing their backstory and just how awesome THEY are.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    The only one I read was Gauntlegrim, and I found it enjoyable enough. Can't attest for the rest of that era of Drizz't but that one was a decent read I don't regret.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Traab View Post
    I look on them like I do redwall abbey. They are good books, but they get repetitive after awhile. I actually own the first 12-15 or so, not sure precisely. I only reread the first 6 and even then mainly the first three. And yeah, im pretty sure salvatore is only writing them still to avoid seeing some other author take it over as he legally doesnt own the character. And as far as the cleric quintet goes (awesome series, first set I ever read in this universe) the series has no crossover with drizzt, however, there are times where various characters from it appear in drizzt stories. So its handy for knowing their backstory and just how awesome THEY are.
    I think The Ghost King (book 22) is a lot more meaningful if you have read the Cleric Quintet (and they are good on their own). And the other books up to that point as well since it is the continuation/end of several plot lines.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tyrant View Post
    I think The Ghost King (book 22) is a lot more meaningful if you have read the Cleric Quintet (and they are good on their own). And the other books up to that point as well since it is the continuation/end of several plot lines.
    I never got that far honestly. I remember the companion crew bumping into cadderly I think, and also the imp from the quintet at some point I think, but thats about it. Its been so long since I read them I dont even know for sure.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    I found the original three Icewind Dale books decent, unambitious and simple reading. The biggest issue is probably wading hip-deep in D&D morality. The combat scenes are entertaining, though Salvatore seems convinced two scimitars and a sabre + dagger are more similar than they actually are. I bounced off the first book of the next trilogy, because D&D drow give me the hives and slaughtering goblins en masse becomes really gratuitous.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    The three Icewind Dale aren't really about Drizzit, although he does get a good share of the limelight across them. They are servicable books - not outstanding gifts to literature, but reasonable fun to read.

    The Dark Elf trilogy is ... uneven. The first two books have some interesting world-building around the Underdark, but didn't really hold my attention the way the Icewind Dale books did. The third book (largely above ground) was better, and a little more relatable. All the same, they aren't terrible books - just not as good as they should be.

    After that... Well, I am hard pressed to remember anything about the successive stories (I think I gave up after two or three books) - the only part I really remember is the crossover with the Cleric Quintet where they completely remove the only good part in the last book in the Quintet. (That is another series that went on too long - the first four books were enjoyable, but the last book simply fell apart.)

    So yes, the early books are good enough, but beyond book 6 you need to be prepared to bail. Salvatore is/was a good writer, but tended to over-mine the seams a little.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    I found the original three Icewind Dale books decent, unambitious and simple reading. The biggest issue is probably wading hip-deep in D&D morality. The combat scenes are entertaining, though Salvatore seems convinced two scimitars and a sabre + dagger are more similar than they actually are. I bounced off the first book of the next trilogy, because D&D drow give me the hives and slaughtering goblins en masse becomes really gratuitous.
    Yeah, I found the D&D morality kind of smothering in the Drizzt stuff. Mostly because quite a lot of it centres around the moral worldview of this misfit Drow, which should open up a lot of potential for the character to explore difficult moral questions - especially living on the fringes of civilization - but the universe around him has already answered what is Good and Just as a kind of an objective truth which is explained to him pretty early into the series. Mostly he seems to wrestle with... I'd say prejudice if everyone discriminating against Drow wasn't entirely warranted, but rather the fact that he's "one of the good ones" and others have to be convinced of that fact.

    It would've been interesting to have a similar story set in Eberron.

    Anyways, I read the first six books and did enjoy them for what they were. I tried one of the far more recent ones and the whole thing felt like a Superhero comic that's mostly being written to maintain a character's IP.

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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    As others have said, books 1-6 are good, everything after that kind of blurs together into the same general story. I think Salvatore lost interest in the character a long time ago, but he was such an iconic thing that Salvatore was forced to keep writing under threat of having the character given to another author if he moved on.

    The Forgotten Realms in general are very high fantasy, kitchen sink style, and the Drizzt works in particular play off this. If you like that kind of thing, youll probably enjoy Drizzt. If not, you'll probably want to stop after the first 6, if not sooner.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Manga Shoggoth View Post
    The three Icewind Dale aren't really about Drizzit, although he does get a good share of the limelight across them. They are servicable books - not outstanding gifts to literature, but reasonable fun to read.

    The Dark Elf trilogy is ... uneven. The first two books have some interesting world-building around the Underdark, but didn't really hold my attention the way the Icewind Dale books did. The third book (largely above ground) was better, and a little more relatable. All the same, they aren't terrible books - just not as good as they should be.

    After that... Well, I am hard pressed to remember anything about the successive stories (I think I gave up after two or three books) - the only part I really remember is the crossover with the Cleric Quintet where they completely remove the only good part in the last book in the Quintet. (That is another series that went on too long - the first four books were enjoyable, but the last book simply fell apart.)

    So yes, the early books are good enough, but beyond book 6 you need to be prepared to bail. Salvatore is/was a good writer, but tended to over-mine the seams a little.
    I had a different experience with the cleric quintet. Namely that I read the fifth book first not realizing it was a series until I had already done so. (shut up, I was young and thought it might have to do with the group of characters) Then I read the others but for book 2 that nobody carried for YEARS afterwards. Finally they did a re-release of the series and I was able to read the second one. So my relationship to the series is rather different than most. I liked them all.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    I've read a large majority of the Legend of Drizzt books, and I'd say they're a fun, easy read. They aren't literary classics, but neither are they blights against literature. They're simple, good fun, and aren't terribly complex, but they do occasionally touch on some deeper topics; my personal favorites are Homeland, Sojourn, and The Spine of the World, although that last one is about Wulfgar (who, fun fact, was the original protagonist of the series) rather than Drizzt. I'd recommend borrowing them from a library rather than purchasing them.

    Also, Drizzt has a freakin' giant panther, aka the best character in the series. That alone makes them worth reading.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Traab View Post
    I had a different experience with the cleric quintet. Namely that I read the fifth book first not realizing it was a series until I had already done so. (shut up, I was young and thought it might have to do with the group of characters) Then I read the others but for book 2 that nobody carried for YEARS afterwards. Finally they did a re-release of the series and I was able to read the second one. So my relationship to the series is rather different than most. I liked them all.
    Hey - I'm glad you enjoyed them. Starting with the last book would certianly give you a different perspective on the story.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manga Shoggoth View Post
    Hey - I'm glad you enjoyed them. Starting with the last book would certianly give you a different perspective on the story.
    Its honestly surprising how easily I followed the story despite not having any of the back story. They did a good job of "refreshing" memory of previous events giving me the context I needed. And while it does ruin a lot of the drama from the earlier books, as I know most of the characters were going to be fine in the end, but there was still a lot of interest in seeing how things got there.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    They are a decent read but the quality kind of rises and falls depending on where in the books you are and what's being talked about. The Dark Elf trilogy is fairly fun while Icewind Dale is traditional adventure material for the most part, though this is also where you are introduced to Artemis Enteri who I love. The Sellsword Trilogy only tangentially involves Driz'zt and company at best, but its also not supposed to. Its about Artemis and Jarlaxle who are great characters to interact with one another.

    Obould Thousand Arrows is also a compelling character, one that livens up the series and he shows up in...The Hunters' Blade trilogy. So I recommend that as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manga Shoggoth View Post
    ...the only part I really remember is the crossover with the Cleric Quintet where they completely remove the only good part in the last book in the Quintet.
    It has been years since I read the Cleric Quintet, do you mind reminding me what part you are referring to? I've honestly forgotten.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kitten Champion View Post
    Yeah, I found the D&D morality kind of smothering in the Drizzt stuff. Mostly because quite a lot of it centres around the moral worldview of this misfit Drow, which should open up a lot of potential for the character to explore difficult moral questions - especially living on the fringes of civilization - but the universe around him has already answered what is Good and Just as a kind of an objective truth which is explained to him pretty early into the series. Mostly he seems to wrestle with... I'd say prejudice if everyone discriminating against Drow wasn't entirely warranted, but rather the fact that he's "one of the good ones" and others have to be convinced of that fact.
    An example I remember is when Catti-Brie is agonizing over killing a human... which, despite said human being an evil sorceress who had tried to kill her and her friends, is somehow worse than killing orcs and goblins. Because they had deserved it more, somehow.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    An example I remember is when Catti-Brie is agonizing over killing a human... which, despite said human being an evil sorceress who had tried to kill her and her friends, is somehow worse than killing orcs and goblins. Because they had deserved it more, somehow.
    Oh, yeah, I remember that. I also remember a scene where Drizzt and Wulfgar are fighting some frost giants, and the narrative keeps calling said giants 'its' instead of 'he's or she's', to really drive home that these are not people, just mindless and evil monsters. I also remember a lot of dialogue and inner-monologue that drives home that all of the characters, including Drizzt, think goblins are sub-human and deserving of death, while simultaneously acting like anyone who judges Drizzt on his race is just awful. (I think...I may be misremembering, but I think there was a brief scene somewhere in which Drizzt kind of realizes this and feels bad about it, but it doesn't go anywhere and Catti-brie, Bruenor and the others continue dehumanizing goblins afterward.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JadedDM View Post
    Oh, yeah, I remember that. I also remember a scene where Drizzt and Wulfgar are fighting some frost giants, and the narrative keeps calling said giants 'its' instead of 'he's or she's', to really drive home that these are not people, just mindless and evil monsters. I also remember a lot of dialogue and inner-monologue that drives home that all of the characters, including Drizzt, think goblins are sub-human and deserving of death, while simultaneously acting like anyone who judges Drizzt on his race is just awful. (I think...I may be misremembering, but I think there was a brief scene somewhere in which Drizzt kind of realizes this and feels bad about it, but it doesn't go anywhere and Catti-brie, Bruenor and the others continue dehumanizing goblins afterward.
    Theres a short story somewhere where Drizzt encounters a goblin enslaved by a human farmer who is mostly just a regular guy who was enslaved for being a goblin, and then killed when Drizzt tries to help him. I don't recall exactly where in the story this takes place, but Drizzt does have a few moments of self doubt when he gets attacked by goblins in the future, until eventually he decides that since they keep attacking him first, its ok to kill them.

    Much later, Catti-bree eventually becomes super racist against orcs and goblins for reasons that were never made particularly clear, and Drizzt is extremely uncomfortable with this, in part because she claims its one of the things she was told by their shared goddess while she was being reincarnated after the spellplague.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    I heard they get reincarnated, but I never made it that far myself. (I think I got as far as Passage to Dawn). But yeah, Catti-brie has always been almost viciously racist against goblins and orcs. I assume it was a trait she learned from her adoptive dwarven father.

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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    To some extent the entire Legend of Drizzt is an extremely lengthy rumination on the 'evil race' question. It doesn't offer any one single answer on that score, which is probably a good thing, but it definitely accepts that culture is a powerful force and overcoming culture as Drizzt has done is extremely difficult and something of an endless struggle. Drizzt kills an awful lot of people over the course of his lengthy career and regrets only a very small proportion of them.

    There is definitely some amount of cultural ranking in the works of Salvatore. In particular, he's sympathetic to any structure that will let him write awesome climatic duels. This is obvious from his Star Wars novel Vector Prime, where he very deliberately engineered the Yuuzhan Vong so they could serve as maximally effective lightsaber duel opponents for Jedi. As a result the drow, who are horrible but serve to provide him with the kind of combat scenes he likes to write, appear much more favorable than opponents that play by different rules.
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    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    I wouldn't say its worth it.

    reasons said above are why, as well as why I don't particularly like the "always evil race" trope. I've read a lot of the Drizzt series, more than others would recommend and it just gets worse as it goes. because all hate for drizzt clones aside, Drizzt Do'Urden himself is kind of the prime example of why the trope does not work and only makes things worse, because the character himself thinks deeply about all this for the kind of writing he is in, but he is surrounded by the most bog-standard DnD adventurers in the world who are shallow as a puddle:
    Catti-Brie: oh hi I'm stereotypical fiery red-headed archer girl
    Bruenor: I'm stereotypical dwarf king, grumble grumble.
    Blond Barbarian Dude I forget the name of: he wields a hammer that returns to him and is basically a thor clone, which is all I remember about him, which tells you all you need to know about how interesting he is
    Cowardly Halfling: he is halfling. and coward. and sometimes greedy. this is all the characterization he has. he once had a hypno-pendant.

    so all really has to play off of these characters is them being cheery, shallow and generically banter-ish while he smiles and regards them as friends that he wants to protect then keeps his thoughts to himself while silently sad that he will eventually outlive all of them after defeating the monster of the book. thats pretty much how all his interactions with them go.
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  30. - Top - End - #30
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

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    Sep 2019

    Default Re: Is the Legend of Drizzt worth it?

    I read until book 7 or 8. The series isn't bad at all, but I did get a little tired of it by around then. I suggest you buy the anniversary edition, which contains the first three books. See if you like those, and continue on from there until you get bored.
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