The Magic of Recluce

by L.E. Modesitt Jr.

Reviewed by Coral


On the island of Recluce, the one thing they prize more than anything else is order. Because order keeps away chaos and it is chaos that causes evil. To maintain this order the island's rulers weed out potential problems by giving them a simple choice: exile or becoming a dangergeld. In accepting the role of dangergeld, one accepts to undertake a mission in the outside world and to not return until they've learned to abide by Recluce's ordered way of life. Needless to say, most end up dead, or choose not to return at all.

This is the path stretching before Lerris, as he leaves the place he calls home because he cannot tolerate its boringness. Now he must try to survive in a foreign land as he struggles to complete his mission and to find the truth within himself.

At least this is what I assume the book is about. It was just so damn boring, I was barely reading it by the end, more like skimming over hundreds of pages in minutes.

For once, I'll have to agree with my sister, that the book suffered because Lerris had no goal. Really, completing his mission should have been it, but "Go here without traveling with other dangergelds" is more a clue on Amazing Race and less the goal of a book's hero.

Too much repetition on the order versus chaos philosophy. Way too much.

There wasn't a single one of the dangergeld characters who were the least bit sympathetic or interesting.

And, to push the book past all redemption, in a kind of war council situation, Lerris realizes how dire the trouble is in whatever kingdom he's found himself in, because of all the women in high ranking positions. Because, apparently, if the kingdom wasn't in great danger, all these women would never have made these positions. I mean, what the hell is that? Sexist trash. Grr.

I hope I never see this book again in my life. Boring piece of garbage.

Grade: F

What the hell? There's 13 books in this "critically acclaimed" saga? What the hell is going on?