I have been a tremendous fan of Terry Brooks since I was in high school. I started the Shannara series in the 9th grade (The Sword of Shannara) and have read the continuation stories over the last 15 years. While this book rings of familiarity, it is still original in its character development. I have always appreciated the author's ability to make his heroes less than heroic, which allows them to be more realistic to the reader. It is with strong emphasis that I recommend this book, and the other two books that accompany it.
The Voyage of the Jerle Shannara" is the first of a trilogy, and this particular volume is called "Ilse Witch" (each book is named after a villain). It is set about one hundred and fifty years after the events of the quartet "Heritage of Shannara", and its last remaining character Walker remains in the Druid Keep of Paranor, nursing his dream of creating an independent Druid Council to exist and interact in the Four Lands. This dream is about to be stirred up once more with the discovery of an Elf floating in the ocean by a Wing Rider named Hunter Predd. He is wearing a bracelet and carries a map - a map that shows the way to an island where a great power is said to reside.
One of the other reviews mentioned that the Shannara series is getting old and tired. However, this is the first Terry Brooks book I have read and thought it was great! I even checked the next two books from the library because I wanted to know what happened next.
Not as good as other books in the series but if you have read the rest of the books then reading this one is worth it just to get more background on some of the characters. I do not suggest you start the shannara books with this one though.
"When a half-drowned elf is found floating in the seas of the Blue Divide, an old mystery resurfaces. Thirty years ago, an elven prince led an expedition in search of a legendary magic said to be more powerful than any in the world. Of all those who set out on that ill-fated voyage, not one has ever returned.
Until now. The rescued elf carries a map covered with mysterious symbols--and Walker Boh, the last of the Druids, has the skill to decipher them. But someone else understands the map's significance: the Ilse Witch, a ruthless young woman who wields a magic as potent as his own. She will stop at nothing to possess the map--and the magic it leads to.
Thus begins the first volume of a dazzling new adventure in one of the most popular fantasy series of our time."
*Please note-I do not use the rating system for my books because many of them I have not read. However, the system automatically assigns a rating to the book when a review is edited, so one may be visible. This does not reflect my actual opinion of the text.