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Thomas Covenant. (1 Viewer)

D

Draimen

I just wanted to know if anyone has read the "Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, the Unbeliever" by Stephen R. Donaldson. I'm on the first book in the Second Chronicles, it's called "The Wounded Land". These are without a doubt, in my opinion, the BEST books I've ever read.
 

Mike C

WF Veterans
Yes, I have - but as you're still reading, maybe I'd better save my comments until you've finished the series!
 

journyman161

Senior Member
I've read them & Daughter of Regals. While the story is good I find his writing style way too overblown for enjoyment - I remember thinking after reading the 1st 3 in the series of Thomas the Unbeliever that I had suffered through quite enough of Donaldson.

I think the entire 3 books should have been edited back to one book - there was so much padding in them it detracted from the story for me
 
D

Draimen

I really like his writing style. I think that the way he creates his world is just awesome. He created an entire new universe that has it's own history, which is ALWAYS what I've wanted to do with my writing. That's the main reason I like writing. I love creating a new world that I can just dive into, and sometimes it helps me really get my feelings and thoughts out, while giving me a peaceful place to really enjoy. I love how everything in his story is different from our world.
 

simon woodhouse

Senior Member
I've only read the first book of the first trilogy (Lord Foul's Bane), and that was enough for me. I couldn't feel any empathy/sympathy for Thomas, as he just seemed to spend all his time whining. Also, I found it hard to understand why Donaldson included the rape scene. What was he trying to do with that? All it did for me was make me feel even less inclined to like Thomas.
 
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Draimen

The rape scene plays a bigger role in the 2nd book... I don't want to ruin it for you, if you ever read it, but it plays a big part in the whole story and shaping of The Land.
 

Non Serviam

WF Veterans
I think Donaldson's the second best living American fantasy writer - the best being Gene Wolfe.

His style in the Covenant books is verbose and turgid, and the characters sometimes irritate readers who prefer more heroic types. During this series, only Covenant and Linden Avery use convincing dialogue; Donaldson overuses the passive voice, his sentences are too long, and his language occasionally clumsy despite his huge vocabulary.

But if you can get past the stylistic issues (which are less noticeable in his later writing), Donaldson's characterisation and plotting are excellent. He's been very influential and no wonder.
 

Pawn

Patron
Donaldson is a writer first, a fantasy writer later, and for me that is what makes him brilliant. Beyond Covenant, I highly recommend the duo Mordant's Need (my personal favourites) and his epic Gap series. The Second Chronicles are for me something of a mindless repetition of the first and, while not lacking any of Donaldson's authorship, seemed too much a reitteration of ideas and characters explored in the initial books.
 

AdrienneW

Senior Member
I tried to get into his books, I aquired a lot of them off ebay when i bid for a few others. I have to admit...I find him difficutl to enjoy. He is detailed, but dry, and after 50 pages into one of his books and hearing pretty much the same thing said over and over I put it down, lost interest, and simply could not bring myself to pick it back up. That was the Thomas Covenant books. I am trying another one of his books from a different series. Forbidden Knowledge...we will see.
 

ross

Senior Member
To be brutally honest. He initially promised the world and delivered Grimsby. I was completely absorbed by the earlier episodes and for me it completely fizzled out later. This could have been The Lord of The Rings all over again. Such a shame.
 

Rob

Senior Member
I read The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant many years ago and came back to them more recently (about 5 years ago) and found them just as entertaining the second time round. A great read. I'll probably read them again some time, they're among my favourite books. I've also read the Gap series. Enjoyed those, but not as much as the Chronicles. Some of his short stories are good.

Omni
 
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