Every Thursday, Nathan over at Fantasy Review Barn hosts a weekly party where blogs get to follow along with Diana Wynne Jones’ hilarious book The Tough Guide to Fantasyland: The Essential Guide to Fantasy Travel listing their favorite books with a particular fantasy trope. So sit back and enjoy the fun.
4th September, 2014 – TURNCOATS
TURNCOATS are people who change to the side of the DARK LORD in mid-tour.
This seemed like a really easy category to pick out some great fantasy novels, but as I began skimming my list of potential picks, digging through my memories about each book and its characters, I found that finding some great “Turncoats” was a little harder than I initially thought. Hey, I still found a few, just not as many as I believed I would. So let me know what I missed.
Now, I can’t really mention who the turncoat is in this story without ruining the semi-surprise. (Yeah, I think most people see this “turncoat” coming for quite some time in the narrative.) However, his transformation from good guy, who dreams of becoming the “Bright Star” of ancient prophecies, into the bad guy himself (the “Black Sun”) is still pretty cool. Something that will no doubt make the second book in the series well worth reading.
I have to pick Valor up as soon as I can.
Read my review of this book here.
The crown prince of turncoats from the Warhammer Universe!
Malekith is the son of Aenarion, the first of the Elven Phoenix Kings, and the mysterious and beautiful seeress Morathi. Raised as a prince of Ulthuan, he grew up to be a fine soldier and general like his father yet also an accomplished mage like his mother. Passed over for the throne of the elves, Malekith swore fealty to the new Phoenix King, seemingly able to put his bitterness behind him as he passed over the seas, helping carve out an elven empire in the new world and forging an alliance between elves and dwarves. In all ways, he proved himself a masterful leader, becoming second only to the Phoenix King in both power and prestige, and respected enough to lead the epic crusade to purge the Pleasure Cults from Ulthuan.
But eventually the curse of his father and mother caught up to Malekith: pride, and he became not only a turncoat to his people but THE DARK LORD himself.
Read my review of this book here.
In the land of the Morigu, a horrendous war was fought a generation ago against the most evil god of them all. In this struggle to the death, all creatures were involved on one side or the other, including elves, dwarves, gods, and mother earth herself. Thankfully, evil was bound; peace restored.
Time has now passed. The memories of the war’s atrocities fading. The surviving heroes the last reminders of the horrible conflict. But as the creatures of the evil one rise once again, sweeping over everything, the remaining heroes sense that something is wrong. Their powers are weakened; their enemies seemingly one step ahead of everything they attempt to do to stem the tide. And soon, they begin to suspect that one of their own has turned on them, throwing his lot in with the evil one himself!
The turncoat(s) are fabulous in this one. People that I never suspected.
The War of the Lance has ended. The darkness has passed. Or has it?
One man — the powerful archmage Raistlin — intends that the darkness return.
This Hero of the Lance has now donned the black robes of an evil wizard, and while the Conclave had suspected that Raistlin might harbor plans to conquer the world, they discover much too late that his ambitions stretched much further than that. For after studying Fistandantilus’ voluminous works on magic, Raistlin embarks on a journey through time itself to gather power so that he may kill Takhisis, the Queen of Darkness, and take her place among the gods!
One of my favorite turncoats of all time. Sure, the novels are more YA to me now, but I still believe Raistlin fits this category, since he went from hero to dark lord between books.
Ingold Inglorion has seen the rising of the Dark. Something he unsuccessfully tried to prepare his world for. Since the destruction of civilization, the wizard has saved thousands of people by leading them through Dark infested lands to the seeming safety of the ancient Keep of Dare. Once there, he has worked to help the refugees settle into the edifice before crossing a continent to the wizard city of Quo, seeking a way to destroy the Dark.
Ingold has faced despair, longing, love, hatred, and hope; conquered each emotion in turn as he continues to survive the downfall of all that he loved. He has given everything to save some small part of the world of mankind — no matter the personal costs to himself. But now something horrible has occurred: Ingold appears to be aiding th Dark!
Only Gil Patterson, Ingold’s lover, and Rudy Solis, his apprentice, have the courage to travel back to the haunted ruins of the capital city to either rescue their fallen friend or kill him.
Great tale of a turncoat. Plus, the ending is not at all what you would expected from a fantasy of this type — especially Ingold’s fate.
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