Series: The Elric Saga
Author Info: http://www.multiverse.org
The Elric Saga is one of the classics of the fantasy genre.I think it’s underrated despite inspiring big shot authors like R.A. Salvatore, Neil Gaiman and Margaret Weiss, and some milestone characters of the fantasy genre such as Drizzt Do’urden and Raistlin Majere. It is rather sad that only the hardcore fantasy geeks have read this incredibly original piece of work.
This book is a combination of the first three books of the series (around 100 pages or less), which are rather short compared to the typical fantasy books. Elric is the ultimate antihero, he is not your typical heroic warrior-king. Even though he is the emperor of Melnibone, he is a weakling barely kept alive by sorcery and potions. He betrays everyone he cares about, but you can’t really get mad at him. He has no purpose, no solid mission, no aim. He has an incredibly powerful megical weapon but whether Elric wields the weapon or the weapon wields Elric is quite unclear.
Moorcock has written this series to move the fantasy genre away from the Tolkienesque cliches everyone has been using, and he did an excellent job of that. This is definitely not your typical fantasy story. The mood and athmosphere of the whole series is dark and melancholy, but without graphic violence and gore.
If you are a lover of fantasy genre and still haven’t read the Elric Saga due to its underrated status, I highly recommend you to read it. Especially if you are an indie author: If it inspired R.A. Salvatore to write Drizzt and Margaret Weis to write Raistlin, it could work wonders for you too.
Although the character and the story are very original and inspired a lot of other great works in the genre, the only complex character here is Elric and all other characters seem quite flat and dull next to him, thus the 4 Roman Solidus rating. (I am a history buff and a huge fan of Roman & Byzantine empires, so I use Roman currency rather than the usual stars.)