David Edding's Pawn of Prophecy


The book I chose to review was Pawn of Prophecy by David Eddings. The
world in which the story takes place is ruled by seven gods. At the
beginning of time the people of the world live in harmony under the seven
gods. Most of the gods choose groups of peoples to worship them, all but
Aldur have followers. A lone boy named Belgarath seeks out Aldur and is
taken in by him, Aldur then teaches him to be a sorcerer. After taking in
the boy, Aldur creates what was to be known as the Orb of Aldur. The orb
is so powerful that Aldur's brother Torak smites Aldur and steels the orb
from him. When Torak will not return the orb, the peoples of the world
attack him and his people, the Angaraks. Torak tries to use the orb to kill
his attackers but the orb will not let him use it for evil and it burns off
half his face. From then on Torak is known as Torak One-Eye. Eventually
Belgarath and the peoples known as Chereks steal the orb back from Torak
while he is sleeping. From that point one Cherek child per generation is
born with a special mark on his hand. Those with the mark prove to be
gifted in the use of the orb.

For thousands of years Torak is kept at bay because the orb is
protected by the Chereks, but somehow, a man known as the Apostate takes
the orb hoping to deliver it to Torak. Belgarath, his daughter Polgara, a
Cherek named Barak, a Drasnian named Silk, a Sendar named Durnik and a
young boy named Garion venture out into the world to try and recover the
orb. Garion is of the Cherek line and has the mark of the orb. The book
is only one of a series of ten books and the plot ends abruptly with
Belgarath and his band of wanderers setting sail for Camaar to continue the
search for the Apostate and the orb. The Pawn of Prophecy is a book that
deals a battle between good and evil forces. Both forces have objectives
that can only be achieved at the expense of the other side's goals. This
means that only one side may win - there will be no compromise. Because
both sides are approximately equal to each other in power, the victor of
this war will not be the most physically powerful side will be the side
that has the stronger will power - the side that will persevere and push
itself through difficult times and situations. This sentiment is echoed
throughout the book. The theme of the book is that if you focus all your
energy into something and try your hardest, you can do anything.

The notion that a person can do anything if they really try is
demonstrated frequently. For example, Belgarath is given the task of
finding the Apostate who stole the Orb of Aldur. This is not an easy
undertaking, even for a powerful sorcerer like Belgarath. It takes him
many months of tracking from Sendar to Darine to Muros to Cherek and
finally to Camaar before he even finds the scent of the man he is pursuing.
Difficult as the task is, Belgarath does not rest until his job is done and
as a result of his efforts he acquires his goal. The author, however, does
not limit the theme only to the good characters of the book. Even the
villains may benefit from perseverance and will power. For example, the
spy named Brill is considered to be of slow mind and body and not a serious
adversary. He is discovered by the Belagarath at Faldor's farm before the
journey to find the orb even begins. Although he is tied up by Belagarath,
letting Belgarath and his group get almost two days travelling ahead of
him, Brill pushes himself and eventually catches up to them again,
ambushing them and injuring the boy Garion. The most apparent example of
the theme is the way in which sorcerers perform their magic. Unlike many
other stories in which a sorcerer or wizard must perform strange rituals
and recite incantations to create magic, in this book, all that is required
is will power and a single word. The author calls this phenomenon "the
will and the word". There is no such thing as magic. If you want, for
example, to move a rock, you merely will it to happen and channel your will
through a word, like "move". The stronger