This is the third book in the Belgariad series that I am determined to finish this year so I can return the books to my friend.
Genre: sword and sorcery fantasy
Length: 307 pages
Setting: traveling from Maragor to the Vale of Ardur to Ulgo and Cthol Murgos, following the events of Queen of Sorcery
Summary: The travelers continue their quest to find the Orb. Ctuthik now has it, so they alter their path to Cthol Murgos. They have to travel through Maragor, so Pol puts everyone to sleep to prevent them from going insane from the ghostly horrors. That spell allows the presence in Garion’s mind to tell Garion a bit more about his purpose. They stop in the Vale of Ardur and Garioin learns more about sorcery. They travel to Ulgo to pick up another member of the band – Relq, a diviner of caves. He is very devout and has never left the caves of Ulgo, but he is instrumental in navigating the caves of Cthol Murgos. Belgarath confronts Ctuthik. Ctuthik dies and they end up with the Orb.
Final thoughts: I’m always surprised how much I enjoy reading these books. There’s a lot of traveling in the story, punctuated by brief fights with the bad guys. When I think back on the story, not much happens besides moving from point A to point B. And yet, in terms of the prophecy, significant progress has been made. Garion is no longer completely in the dark about his role to play, and all the members of the group have been found. It seems there are two competing prophecies of the future – one in which all creation is destroyed and one in which life continues. Each has a near equal chance of occurring, but Belgarath (and the voice in Garion’s head) are working to make sure life continues. By this time, I have a much easier time keeping all the races and characters separate. It can get overwhelming since there are so many and the names are difficult for me to remember. The starting chapter of lore helps to set the stage for the book, though.
Title comes from: Belgarath refers to Ctuthik derogatorily has a magician. Ctuthik stole the Orb in an attempt to lure Belgarath to him and ruin the prophecy. Belgarath ruined his gambit by leaving C’nedra behind in the caverns of Ulgo
Reading challenges fulfilled: book #12 for 2018, and #6 in my Finish the Series Challenge. It’s my first book I can’t use for my Reading the Alphabet Challenge
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