Moving to Night #2 of our Sword of Truth 13 night Marathon. We will review the second novel of the series…..Stone of Tears.
Stone of Tears by Terry Goodkind – a Review
I loved Stone of Tears, loved the fact that I was able to continue to the next book without waiting, as most of you have had to do. Being able to do this, makes you even more obsessed with the characters, if you become attached to them, like I have. Many of you have told me how you become obsessed with the characters that Terry Goodkind has created. They were so right….Richard & Kahlan, are wonderful characters that I will get to enjoy for awhile longer. Perhaps even the best characters I will ever meet.
The book starts from the beginning with intense excitement with the escape of the screeling, and Zedd and the others trying to escape. As always , Goodkind brings in many new secondary characters, which this book had quite a lot of. Some great, some interesting, some others …were just added parts to the story. However, I wasn’t crazy that we had to wait so long (chapter 6) to see Kahlan and Richard again. Chandalen turns out to be a great secondary character and watching him and Kahlan get close at the end was great. The time with the mud people was a bit slow, as you kept waiting for them to finally get together, which of course never happens. But it did bring in the Sisters of the Light (Dark), and Verna. By the time they reached the Palace, maybe even a bit before, I started to like Verna. I knew she was good, though a bit too stern in her belief, which later changes.
So quickly things changed to separate Richard and Kahlan again. The part with Deena was good, as she did redeem herself to save Richard from Darken Rahl & the Keeper. But it was so sad what Kahlan had to do to save Richard’s life. That indeed was an emotional part of the book, changing the entire storyline. But poor Richard & Kahlan, once again they are torn apart.
Kahlan is fantastic, what a great female character. Teaching the young men how to fight a war, the power she has within (which I am sure will grow even more powerful later on), her bravado at such trying times, simply amazes me. When she makes the men and herself whitewash themselves and go nude was a classic trick. Lol bravo to her, not only to go naked as the lone women, but to think of something like that. It was pretty scary, when they dragged her off the horse, and thankfully Orsk became one of hers to protect her (he was a funny character with his ax). Also the scene earlier, when the young men brought their former friend to her (after they killed the others), and she forced him to tell them that he would have betrayed them, was also classic, as the soldiers saw her power, and realized how she saved them. They became totally loyal to her then. Prindin was a surprise, though I saw he wanted her throughout and should have expected he would turn. Good points in this story, but still not as good as Richard’s. Well at least until they came to Kahlan’s home and the council. That was exciting, but a bit of a turnoff , the way they treated her, the guy (forgot his name) standing on the bed urinating (was this necessary lol), sending her to the pits, the horror, the wizard who did that to her. Awful part, and perhaps in those days, that may be the way things were (when men like this thought little of women), but it was depressing. Just when she gets away, Zedd betrays her (I know he lost his memory, and didn’t know her) to have her brought back to be beheaded. Of course, we knew nothing will happen to Kahlan, she has a lot more books to go, not to mention one of the main characters. lol Why didn’t they just have her escape, why go through that. I guess to make Richard originally think she died.
On to Richard and the Sisters of the Light. I thought the trip to the Palace was a bit too long, many unnecessary parts. However, I loved seeing Richard meet Gratch. Loved how they both played, & loved each other. And how Gratch followed Richard to the Palace. Lol Great character, even better then Scarlett, whom we did not see too much, but nice to see again later on. Things got better, after they got to the Palace. I thought despite my dislike of the sisters of the light, this was a very good storyline. You knew he would discover things about his power, and what he was meant to do. You knew about the sisters of the dark, and waited for them to come out. The best parts of course was Gratch, and the most emotional when he forced himself to say goodbye to Gratch, to save his life. I felt so bad, and hated Pasha and the sisters when they went to kill him. Verna coming to tell him to save Gratch, was the final thing that made me like her even more. But at the same time, this was the moment, I kept waiting for, when Richard realizes that Kahlan did love him. She did to him, what he did to Gratch to save his life. Great scenes.
The time element (time moves slowly and hundreds of years would go by) was an excellent addition to the Sisters story. It was great to watch Richard grow more powerful, believe in himself, then to escape and get back to home and to try and save Kahlan. Bringing Scarlett to fly him was great, Verna’s comments of him finding strange pets was hysterical. His grief to find out that Kahlan was beheaded was sad, and Kahlan’s belief that Richard was lost for 300 years was also sad. But I thought it was a nice touch for Denna to be the one to bring them together finally. The only beef I have with that, is I would have preferred them together in their world, not elsewhere, where they still have to travel to meet up.
I loved, loved Richard meeting up with Gratch again, and how he tells Gratch that he can stay with him and Kahlan, and she will love him too. Great scene.
Some parts I wasn’t crazy about were the torture scenes, that throughout the story tended to be extreme. I also understand, but do not like the total separation, instead of short periods, of Richard and Kahlan being apart. I know this is not a romance, but without their love for one another, this story would not be as powerful as it is. This is Richard & Kahlan’s story. However, all said and done, I loved Stone of Tears.
Reviewed by Barb