Mythic Fantasy: Pages of Pain

What a chi­mera of a book this is. It has one foot in plain old fan­tasy, with quite a few battles, some spell-slinging, and a hero on a quest. The other foot is deep in myth. When I first read this book, around seven years ago, I didn’t quite get it. I was already quite familiar with Plan­es­cape, the Dun­geons & Dragons set­ting that forms the back­drop for this novel. How­ever, in the novel, I found little of the vast vistas and wide-eyed wonder that typ­i­fied the set­ting for me. Instead, the book’s nar­rative is almost com­pletely con­fined to a labyrinth, which offers only a few passing glimpses of all the ima­gin­ative places that make up the Plan­es­cape mul­ti­verse. How­ever, upon a second reading and some brief reflec­tion, I think I now see what Den­ning tried to do here. […Read more…]