Mercedes Lackey is always a spell binding story teller and this book is no exception. This is the first book in her Gryphon trilogy.
Set in the world of Valdemar, but a thousand years before the other books of that series, this one presents a world that is full of magic as well as gifts.
A terrible war is raging as an evil wizard tries to conquer all the lands around him. Against him stands Urtho, the Mage of Silence, his human followers, and the magic creatures he has created, most notably the gryphons.
The book is told from the perspectives of Skan, the black gryphon of the title and Amberdrake, a human. They both make fascinating new friends.
The characters are alive and the plot is absorbing. I've seen some reviews that say this one is not up to Lackey's usual standard, but I don't agree. You will love this book.
Very good book,this one I had to drag with me every where that I went so that I could finish it quicker.
I hear that after this book the series went downhill but I enjoyed this one IMMENSELY. It's one of my favorite Lackey books, hands down.
This story is set in the time before most of Lakey's Valdemar novels. It is the story of the war between two great mages that causes the magical upheaval of the western hills and the splitting of the Kaled'a'in clans. It focuses around the central figures, in particular a black gryphon named Skan. Like all of the books that Lakey has written or corroborated on I devoured it.
From Publishers Weekly
Setting a story in prehistory suggests a enormous potential, a feeling that all is new and possible. Lackey's latest created world (illustrated by husband Dixon) predates the setting of her Valdemar series by a millennium but never quite lives up to its expanded possibilities. The gryphon of the title is the charismatic Skandranon, leader of the gryphons, a race of birds just evolving into awareness. After establishing this intriguing premise, however, the tale soon bogs down in fantasy cliches as the main characters fight a standard war against the forces of evil. Although some of the novel's elements, like Skandranon's human friend Amberdrake, suggest a possible complexity, the plot is predictable and the overwritten battle scenes are difficult to follow. In the end, the evil Mage of Black Fire is destroyed, nearly everyone else lives and the chaotic magic of prehistory is tamed.
This is a fantastic read! I picked up recommended by my sister and my friend and I got sucked into the series. This first book is definitely worth the read.
Not as good as some of lackey's other triologiess but still worth reading.
An enjoyable fantasy. You identify with the charaters and their ups and downs.
I haven't re-read this series in its entirety in a long time. There are some new books added to it since the last time I read them, so that is pretty exciting for me. These books really just remind me of being young, reading them in the back seat of the car... I think I was in 5th grade when I started reading them and they've always been a pleasure to re-read.
As far as this trilogy goes, I think this first one has always been my favorite - it's very exciting... though the other two are good as well, from what I remember. They are all fast, fun reads - and who doesn't love gryphons?
Set in the same world as Valdemar, but far in the past, chronicles the events culminating in the first Cataclysm.
Book two of the Mage Wars. Very good fantasy story. This book is paperback size with hardback cover(library binding?) Excellent shape with celophane cover.