Read Elminster: The Making of a Mage by Ed Greenwood Free Online
Book Title: Elminster: The Making of a Mage|
The author of the book: Ed Greenwood
Date of issue: December 1994
Loaded: 2098 times
Reader ratings: 3.9
ISBN 13: 9781560769361
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 458 KB
City - Country: No data
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Seriously, why did I ever read this rubbish?
17 May 2012
You have seriously got to be kidding, a bad novelist has turned a bad novel about a seriously annoying character into a franchise. When I ran a search for this book on Goodreads I discovered that there is a whole series of books about this Elminster character, including: Elminster in Hell, Elminster's Daughter (what, he actually got laid, I though this mighty super magician was above love), Elminster Must Die (and I bet you he doesn't) among others. Seriously, either Ed Greenwood has way too much time on his hands, or people will simply read anything. Personally I think it is the second answer since Greenwood can pretty much get away with writing rubbish.
Now, don't get me wrong, I actually think Greenwood has writing talent, and imagination, it is just that his talent tends not to flow on to writing novels. This particular novel was very bad and very boring. In fact I paid probably $1.00 for the novel, and gave it away as soon as I finished it (I would have burnt it, but under no circumstances would I ever burn a book, even one as bad as this, though newspapers don't count).
Ed Greenwood was initially a writer for TSR, the company that developed and marketed the first ever roleplaying game, Dungeons and Dragons. I actually quite liked the world of the Forgotten Realms. While it did lack in realism in parts I still found it quite well constructed. This was Ed Greenwood's brainchild, and the world he created was truly full of adventure. It is still a very popular game world and does form the backbone of many of the Dungeons and Dragons products that are released today. While Gary Gygax's World of Greyhawk still exists, it simply did not seem to enjoy the popularity that The Forgotten Realms did. Greyhawk tended to be more medieval where as The Realms had a much more Renaissance feel to it.
However there were a few things that did annoy me. First of all there was a very strong distinction between good and evil. The kingdoms ruled by a good king (such as Cormyr) were good and the king was good. He would treat his subjects well and despite the land being ruled by a monarchy, people enjoyed freedom (particularly merchants). This was never the case (and still isn't the case) in our real world. Some have critised other authors for being too idealistic in the worlds, however not much criticism has been levelled against Dungeons and Dragons products for similar things. As for evil, they are truly evil, but I have never viewed the world as ever being black and white. In a way it can be considered civilised and barbaric, but even then that is a misnomer because it depends on one's point of view. Just because somebody lives in a nice apartment with all of the Mod-cons does not necessarily mean that they are civilised, and just because they live in a mud hut beside a river in a jungle and survive off the produce of the land does not necessarily mean they are barbaric.
The other aspect I do not like is Elminster, pure and simple. If I could give one word as to why I do not like him it is this: Gandalf. Seriously, it is very, very clear that Elminster has been modelled on Gandalf. In fact, as we explore the world of the Forgotten Realms we discovered that there is a circle of powerful mages that seem to be a direct copy of the Istari of Middle Earth. The difference is that the Istari are not wizards simply because they are not human. They are spiritual beings that have been sent to Middle Earth as helpers for the people living there. In a way they are a bulwark against the power of Sauron. There is no Sauron in the Forgotten Realms, but there are these wonderfully powerful and fantastic, almost immortal, wizards that live there. I sort of did like it, but in a way, I never liked Elminster.
Elminster lives in a region called the Dalelands, a forested region of the Forgotten Realms made up of a collection of farming communities in large clearings known as The Dales. There is no connection between them, and in a way they are all independent communities (there is no concept of democracy or a republic in the Forgotten Realms, which is very disappointing since Republics have been in existence for a very long time – in fact I have never seen the word republic used in conjuction with the Forgotten Realms, despite it having been a part of our vocabulary, since at least Plato). However, I hated Elminster so much that I created a Daleland called Darkdale that existed in a cavern underneath Shadowdale (where Elminster lives) and made it a complete opposite of Shadowdale, right down to the powerful, evil, undead sorcerer that lived there. Needless to say, Greenwood never actually took my idea up.
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Read information about the authorEd Greenwood is the creator of the Forgotten Realms fantasy world, which became the setting for his home D&D game in 1975. Play still continues in this long-running campaign, and Ed also keeps busy producing Realmslore for various TSR publications.
Ed has published over two hundred articles in Dragon magazine and Polyhedron newszine, is a lifetime charter member of the Role Playing Game Associaton (RPGA) network, has written over thirty books and modules for TSR, and been Gen Con Game Fair guest of honor several times.
In addition to all these activities, Ed works as a library clerk and has edited over a dozen small press magazines.
Invented the character Elminster from the popular Forgotten Realms RPG series. Currently resides in an old farmhouse in the countryside of Ontario, Canada.
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