I have read The Elenium trilogy many, many times over the years. I discovered it one day while I was in high school just wandering around the library. I had already been to the shelves with our library’s meager selection of Anne McCaffrey books and picked up one of the few complete sets that they had. I think it might have been the Crystal Singer series, but I’m not certain. Anyways, I was randomly reading the titles of books when the “The Sapphire Rose” caught my eye. I picked the book up and, after reading the summary, immediately went to the “other works” page. As soon as I saw “The Sapphire Rose” listed as part of a trilogy, I looked to see if the library had the other two books.
I got lucky, because they did! Naturally, I grabbed all three books, checked them out along with the other books I had selected, got my usual “there’s no way this chick reads all these books that she checks out all the time” look from the librarian, and then went back to school and started reading “The Diamond Throne” while waiting for my friend to finish up band practice so we could go home.
Now, I’ll be honest, I’m too intimidated to write “real” reviews of these books of these books because I don’t want to somehow downplay their greatness! So, I’m just going to write a few glowing sentiments (like they put on the back of the best sellers) and then pick a few favorite quotes from each book. The quotes I choose won’t be anything crucial to the story, just ones that I like or that make me laugh.
This is a great book with intriguing characters and an amazing story line. It’s always a pleasure to re-read this trilogy and the first book book really sets the stage for just how awesome the other two are. Between the politics and the religious groups, there’s never a dull moment.
“I like talking with whores,” Kalten said. “They’ve got a nice, uncomplicated view of life.”
“That’s a strange hobby for a Church knight.”
“Harparin gets urges, all right, but I don’t think the girls inside would satisfy them. He might find you interesting, though.” –Sparhawk to Talen
“Discomfort’s good for the soul.”
“My soul’s just fine, Sparhawk. It’s my behind that’s starting to wear out.”
Perfectly continuing the first book, this book adds in a few more characters and reintroduces some that you probably didn’t think were coming back. The politics are heating up and and so is the magic.
“She’s self-indulgent, shrewish, and more than a little stupid. She’s turned you into something I’d rather not look at. Besides, she’s not very attractive anymore. –unnamed Pelosian nobleman about his wife to his son Jaken
“All right, my young thief,’ the Domi chortled, holding his widespread hands out in front of him, “steal what you can.”
“Thank you all the same, Domi,” Talen said with a polite bow, “but I already have. I believe I’ve got just about everything of value you own.”
The concluding book of the Elenium trilogy is amazing, to say the least. Sparhawk has Bhelliom and, after healing his queen, he embarks on the final part of his quest: ridding the world of Otha and Azash. Along the way, he learns a few new things about Gods, Goddesses, and Bhelliom, and loses a few friends.
“I’m not trying to be offensive, Sparhawk, but the Elene religion has become institutionalized, and it’s very hard to love an institution. The Gods of Styricum have a much more personal relationship with their devotees.”
“I think I prefer being an Elene. It’s easier. Personal relationships with Gods are very upsetting.”
“It’s all terribly unnatural, of course,” the Earl of Lenda said sardonically. “The whole purpose of government has always been to keep the commons under control and out of politics entirely. The only purpose the common people really have for existing is to do the work and pay the taxes. We may be doing something here that we’ll all live to regret.”
“Dying,” Emban replied. “Of course, he’s been dying for several years, but he’s a little more serious about it this time.”
There is a second trilogy featuring the same characters called The Tamuli, but I haven’t read those yet. I’m thinking that I’ll have to put in a request to the library to get the missing books of that series so that I can read them, though.