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The Elfstones of Shannara
Cover of The Elfstones of Shannara
The Elfstones of Shannara
The Original Shannara Trilogy, Book 2
Borrow
In the far future, unbeknown to humankind, an apocalyptic war is brewing. Fearsome, vengeful Demons rage at the boundaries of the world, held at bay by a spell called the Forbidding. But now that barrier is dying. Evil is beginning to break through. And only the Chosen can banish the Demons back to their realm.

Wil Ohmsford is a healer, not a fighter; a man of duty, not great deeds. But this epic battle seeks him out, for he holds the Elfstones: mysterious protective talismans passed down by his grandfather. Wil is recruited to act as guardian to the Elf girl Amberle, who must venture far to deliver a seed that will help the Forbidding to grow again. The fate of civilization rests upon her shoulders—and the completion of her mission rests upon Wil's. Now, as the forces of darkness descend, Wil and Amberle embark on a perilous journey, placing their faith in each other to survive the bloodthirsty terrors that await.

Praise for Terry Brooks

"Shannara was one of my favorite fictional worlds growing up, and I look forward to many return trips."—Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia!

"If Tolkien is the grandfather of modern fantasy, Terry Brooks is its favorite uncle."—Peter V. Brett, author of The Skull Throne

"A great storyteller, Terry Brooks creates rich epics filled with mystery, magic, and memorable characters."—Christopher Paolini, author of Eragon
From the Paperback edition.
In the far future, unbeknown to humankind, an apocalyptic war is brewing. Fearsome, vengeful Demons rage at the boundaries of the world, held at bay by a spell called the Forbidding. But now that barrier is dying. Evil is beginning to break through. And only the Chosen can banish the Demons back to their realm.

Wil Ohmsford is a healer, not a fighter; a man of duty, not great deeds. But this epic battle seeks him out, for he holds the Elfstones: mysterious protective talismans passed down by his grandfather. Wil is recruited to act as guardian to the Elf girl Amberle, who must venture far to deliver a seed that will help the Forbidding to grow again. The fate of civilization rests upon her shoulders—and the completion of her mission rests upon Wil's. Now, as the forces of darkness descend, Wil and Amberle embark on a perilous journey, placing their faith in each other to survive the bloodthirsty terrors that await.

Praise for Terry Brooks

"Shannara was one of my favorite fictional worlds growing up, and I look forward to many return trips."—Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia!

"If Tolkien is the grandfather of modern fantasy, Terry Brooks is its favorite uncle."—Peter V. Brett, author of The Skull Throne

"A great storyteller, Terry Brooks creates rich epics filled with mystery, magic, and memorable characters."—Christopher Paolini, author of Eragon
From the Paperback edition.
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  • Library copies:
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  • Interest Level:
  • Text Difficulty:
    9 - 12

Recommended for you

Excerpts-
  • From the book

    The night sky brightened faintly in the east with the approach of dawn as the Chosen entered the
    Gardens of Life. Without, the Elven city of Arborlon lay sleeping, its people still wrapped in the
    warmth and solitude of their beds. But for the Chosen, the day had already begun. Their trailing
    white robes billowing slightly with a rush of summer
    wind, they passed between the sentries of the Black Watch, who stood
    rigid and aloof as such sentries had stood for centuries gone before the
    arched, wrought-iron gateway inlaid with silver scroll and ivory chips.
    They passed quickly, and only their soft voices and the crunch of their
    sandaled feet on the gravel pathway disturbed the silence of the new day
    as they slipped into the pine-shadowed dark beyond.

    The Chosen were the caretakers of the Ellcrys, the strange and wondrous
    tree that stood at the center of the Gardens--the tree, as the legends
    told, that served as protector against a primordial evil that had very
    nearly destroyed the Elves centuries ago, an evil that had been shut
    away from the earth since before the dawn of the old race of Men. In all
    the time that had followed, there had been Chosen to care for the
    Ellcrys. Theirs was a tradition handed down through generations of
    Elves, a tradition of service that the Elves regarded as both a coveted
    honor and a solemn duty.

    Yet there was little evidence of solemnity in the procession that passed
    through the Gardens this morning. Two hundred and thirty days of the
    year of their service had gone by, and youthful spirits could no longer
    be easily subdued. The first sense of awe at the responsibility given
    them had long since passed, and the Chosen of the Elves were now just
    six young men on their way to perform a task they had performed each day
    since the time of their choosing, a task grown old and familiar--the
    greeting of the tree at the first touch of sunrise.

    Only Lauren, youngest of this year's Chosen, was silent. He lagged
    a bit behind the others as they walked, taking no part in their idle
    chatter. His red head was bent in concentration, and there was a deep
    frown on his face. So wrapped up in his thoughts was he that he was not
    aware when the noise ahead ceased, nor of the steps that fell back
    beside him, until a hand touched his arm. Then his troubled face jerked
    up abruptly to find Jase regarding him.

    "What's the matter, Lauren? Are you sick?" Jase asked. Because
    he was a few months older than the rest, Jase was the accepted leader of
    the Chosen.

    Lauren shook his head, but the frown did not leave his face entirely.
    "I'm all right."

    "Something is bothering you. You've been brooding all morning.
    Come to think of it, you were rather quiet last night, too."
    Jase's hand on his shoulder brought the younger Elf about to face
    him. "Come on, out with it. Nobody expects you to serve if
    youaO(TM)re not feeling well."

    Lauren hesitated, then sighed and nodded, "All right. It's the
    Ellcrys. Yesterday, at sunset, just before we left her, I thought I saw
    some spotting on her leaves. It looked like wilt."

    "Wilt? Are you sure? Nothing like that ever happens to the
    Ellcrys--at least that's what wea've always been told," Jase
    said doubtfully.

    "I could have been mistaken," Lauren admitted. "It was getting
    dark. I told myself then that it was probably just the way the shadows
    lay on the leaves. But the more I try to remember how it looked, the
    more I think it really was wilt."

    There was a disconcerted muttering from the others, and one of them
    spoke. "This is Amberle's fault. I said before...

About the Author-
  • Terry Brooks has thrilled readers for decades with his powers of imagination and storytelling. He is the author of more than thirty books, most of which have been New York Times bestsellers. He lives with his wife, Judine, in the Pacific Northwest.
    Scott Brick, an acclaimed voice artist, screenwriter, and actor, has performed on film, television, and radio. His stage appearances throughout the US include Cyrano, Hamlet, and MacBeth. In the audio industry, Scott has won over 20 Earphones Awards, as well as the 2003 Audie Award in the Best Science Fiction category for Dune: The Butlerian Jihad. After recording nearly 250 books in five years, AudioFile Magazine named Scott "one of the fastest-rising stars in the audiobook galaxy" and proclaimed him one of their Golden Voices. Brick's range is unparalleled as he reads thrillers to narrative nonfiction, from biographies to science fiction with aplomb.
Reviews-
  • AudioFile Magazine Terry Brooks is a master of the fantasy epic, sustaining suspense as he builds layer upon layer of intertwined relationships between his unusual characters. Long before The ELFSTONES OF SHANNARA, the elves' "spell of forbidding" and their enchanted tree imprisoned all demons in "the nothingness." Now most believe it to be only a fable. BIG mistake. Narrator Scott Brick carries the multitude in Brooks's complex saga admirably well, with one glaring exception. Apparently, Wil Ohmsford, wielder of the Elfstones, as well as tons of dialogue, has stepped directly off the rugby fields of Eton sporting a snotty upper-class accent and an annoying whine. Luckily, the strong plot pulls the listener along regardless of the off-putting character of Ohmsford's speeches. P.H.M. (c) AudioFile 2004, Portland, Maine
  • AudioFile Magazine The second volume of Terry Brooks's Shannara trilogy tells the tale of Wil Ohmsford, who, with his magical and powerful Elfstones, must protect an elf named Amberle as she takes a seed from a magical tree to a place where it can grow. Malevolent forces bar the way. Charles Keating lends his voice to this Tolkienesque fantasy, an excellent match between reader and material. At six hours in length, this abridgment is satisfying--with a fast-moving story and clear delivery. S.D. (c) AudioFile 2004, Portland, Maine
  • Peter V. Brett, author of The Skull Throne
    Praise for Terry Brooks

    "Shannara was one of my favorite fictional worlds growing up, and I look forward to many return trips."--Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia!

    "If Tolkien is the grandfather of modern fantasy, Terry Brooks is its favorite uncle."
  • Christopher Paolini, author of Eragon "A great storyteller, Terry Brooks creates rich epics filled with mystery, magic, and memorable characters."
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    Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group
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    All copies of this title, including those transferred to portable devices and other media, must be deleted/destroyed at the end of the lending period.

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The Elfstones of Shannara
The Original Shannara Trilogy, Book 2
Terry Brooks
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