[By Nic Lindh on Saturday, 20 March 2004]
The Grand Crusade_ is the third and final installment of Michael Stackpole’s _DragonCrown Cycle, and the series goes out with a bang.
Stackpole uses the common fantasy elements of elves, dragons, and wizards in new and novel ways, his writing is fast and to the point, and his characters are well-drawn and interesting. They even–gasp!–grow and change in response to events.
The plot is dense and hard to condense, but at heart it’s the usual great-evil-wants-to-conquer-everything, which is perfectly fine. With a rich and detailed world with a great deal of lore in which his characters do their mighty or nefarious deeds, the DragonCrown Cycle stands as one of the most interesting fantasy creations since The Wheel of Time.
The conclusion felt a little bit rushed, and more than a touch formulaic, but wasn’t by any means a complete let-down.
A huge thank-you to Stackpole for actually sticking to a three-book series (with one prequel), instead of droning on and on and on and on like Robert Jordan.