Author: Markus Heitz
Translator: Sheelagh Alabaster
The Revenge Of The Dwarves is the third in a trilogy from fantasy best-seller, Markus Heitz. Originally written in German in 2005, it only made it to the English language in 2011. It was worth the wait.
Dwarves is an epic story that Heitz paints in vivid detail. The way Heitz sometimes stands still to describe a scene, immediately reminded me of way the Tolkien also used to describe scenes in painstaking detail.
The story follows Tungdil Goldhand, the heroic warrior dwarf, from the first two instalments of the trilogy. Tungdil has previously saved the kingdom of Girdlegard and for the last five cycles there has been a peace. It has been a time of rebuilding for all in Girdlegard. Bonds between the dwarves, elves and humans have been renewed and it seems that all is well. But something is amiss.
Orcs were spotted near the cave entrances to Girdlegard, although it was thought that they were all destroyed. Because of this Tungdil is summoned to see what’s going on. But Tungdil is not the dwarf he used to be. He is a full-blown drunk, depressed and out of shape. His king, upon seeing the state he is in, reunites him with his old friend, Boïndil Ireheart. Together they set off to inspect the caves to see what’s going on, and the adventure starts.
All hell breaks loose in this time. Monstrous hybrid creatures, comprising of flesh, mechanics and magic, are on the rampage throughout the land. They are searching for a powerful magical artefact, in the form of a diamond.
This artefact has immense powers and can save everyone by being set in its rightful place to seal off the portal to the Black Abyss, or can destroy everything if wielded to control the many evils that lurk inside that cursed Abyss. With the destruction of the previous evil, copies of the artefact was made and distributed throughout the land to honourable heroes to guard it.
Tungdil and Boïndil band together with more heroes, including Rodario, Goda, Sirka and Flagur, and the race to get the artefact is on.
Soon everyone realises that these monsters aren’t the only ones searching for the artefact. The elves and alfär are also searching for the artefact. And then a mysterious army from the Outerlands shows up, also searching for the artefact.
Tungdil is faced with more than just enemies on the battlefield. He must help retain calmness and sense in the kingdom, as thin political bonds and devious schemes within the Girdlegard people are ready to tear them apart.
The story builds to a climax of epic proportions as armies of dwarves, and humans face off against orcs, elves and the hybrid monsters to secure the artefact, only then to race to get the artefact to its resting place to secure the portal to the Black Abyss.
The battle at the Black Abyss is epic in every sense of the word. There are heroes wielding magical weapons, mythical creatures, and evil things, armies of ubari, sorcerers and magic! It is wickedly intense!
Even though missing out on the first two instalments of the trilogy, it was still easy to pick up on the characters, the world and the story, due to Heitz’ rich descriptions and explanations. The story interweaves battle, magic, adventure, suspense, politics and relationships seamlessly. The characters have depth and feel fully developed at the conclusion.
Heitz did tend to veer off the story a few times to tell by-stories not really relevant to anything else. The story also took quite a while to get going, with Heitz using a good 250+ pages to set everything up in meticulous detail. And at 770 pages, the book itself is of epic proportions!
The end also left a lot of unanswered questions and loose ends. Too many for the conclusion to story though. There’s enough to spark a whole new book!
An impressive fantasy tale told with conviction and a stunning end to the trilogy. A great fantasy read and thoroughly enjoyable! Highly recommended!