The High Druid's Blade: The Defenders of Shannara
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
Legend has it that Paxon Leah is descended from the royals and warriors who once ruled the Highlands and waged war with magical weapons. But those kings, queens, and heroes are long gone, and there is nothing enchanted about the antique sword that hangs above Paxon’s fireplace. Running his family’s modest shipping business, Paxon leads a quiet life—until extraordinary circumstances overturn his simple world . . . and rewrite his destiny.
When his brash young sister is abducted by a menacing stranger, Paxon races to her rescue with the only weapon he can find. And in a harrowing duel, he is stunned to discover powerful magic unleashed within him—and within his ancestors’ ancient blade. But his formidable new ability is dangerous in untrained hands, and Paxon must master it quickly because his nearly fatal clash with the dark sorcerer Arcannen won’t be his last. Leaving behind home and hearth, he journeys to the keep of the fabled Druid order to learn the secrets of magic and earn the right to become their sworn protector.
But treachery is afoot deep in the Druids’ ranks. And the blackest of sorcery is twisting a helpless innocent into a murderous agent of evil. To halt an insidious plot that threatens not only the Druid order but all the Four Lands, Paxon Leah must summon the profound magic in his blood and the legendary mettle of his elders in the battle fate has chosen him to fight.
Praise for The High Druid’s Blade
“High adventure, lots of action, and appealing [characters] . . . a good place for new readers to jump into the author's world.”—Library Journal
“Terry Brooks is a grandmaster of the fantasy genre, and his latest will both captivate and surprise readers. . . . It’s truly magical.”—Associated Press
“Brooks once again gifts readers with a breathless adventure in this new Shannara trilogy, the Defenders of Shannara. The action begins in the first chapter and doesn’t end until the last page.”—RT Book Reviews
“A great place to introduce yourself to all of Brooks’s novels . . . [The High Druid’s Blade] is a great stand-alone book and will definitely throw you headfirst into the world of Shannara.”—Whedonopolis
“The High Druid's Blade is an intriguing, action-filled novel that you are sure to love.”—Faire’s Fair Book Reviews
“Readers both new [and old] will enjoy reading The High Druid’s Blade.”—The Arched Doorway
“An enjoyable read . . . I will definitely be picking up the next book when it comes out.”—Jessie Reads Everything
Praise for Terry Brooks
“The Sword of Shannara is an unforgettable and wildly entertaining epic, animated by Terry Brooks’s cosmically generative imagination and storytelling joy.”—Karen Russell, New York Times bestselling author of Swamplandia!
“If Tolkien is the grandfather of modern fantasy, Terry Brooks is its favorite uncle.”—Peter V. Brett, New York Times bestselling author of The Desert Spear
“I can’t even begin to count how many of Terry Brooks’s books I’ve read (and reread) over the years. From Shannara to Landover, his work was a huge part of my childhood.”—Patrick Rothfuss, New York Times bestselling author of The Name of the Wind
From the Hardcover edition.
You stay right here and keep watch for his return.” “But I want to—” “No, Grehling.” Leofur cut him short before he could finish. “Paxon is right. You have to stay behind this time. It is too dangerous.” “Thank you.” Paxon gave her an appreciative nod. “Which is why I’ll be going instead,” she finished, hefting the flash rip in the cradle of her arms to emphasize why. She faced down Paxon defiantly. “Don’t say anything stupid. You need someone to watch your back. I can do that for you.” He
where the first of the taverns spilled its patrons out one door and on to the next while new patrons pushed their way inside and women from the pleasure houses called out to them from the doorways and windows of their workplaces. A few dogs roamed the streets and alleyways as they made their way through the town, and carts and horses passed them by in a rumble of wheels and a clopping of hooves. Beggars came at them from everywhere, and pitchmen from the more exotic shows called out their
clutched to her breast like a supplicant. “Go on, now,” she hissed. “Run!” Chrysallin almost bolted, but then she hesitated. “Will you tell me your name?” The old woman smiled. “It’s Mischa.” FOURTEEN EXPECTATIONS DANCED THROUGH CHRYSALLIN’S MIND AS SHE fled Dark House and Arcannen for places unknown but infinitely safer. She ran through the twilight and darkness toward freedom, thinking at first only to put distance between herself and her captors but then realizing a plan was necessary.
do—so he was confident that it wouldn’t help Paxon to know it. He was a man possessed of a new style of airship and a crew that likely would do anything he asked them to. Somehow, he had been able to persuade Paxon to put down the iron bar when that might have made the difference in the fight. And he had Chrys in his possession. He was flying her back to Wayford to something called Dark House. Paxon could only imagine what that might turn out to be. Come find out, Arcannen had challenged.
and the girl might have found shelter by now. Exhausted and frightened, they would be hoping to spend the night undisturbed. The girl might have escaped, but she would not be able to travel far in her present condition. The magic would have eroded her strength and left her barely able to walk. She would not be far from where Mischa stood now; it was almost certain that the boy had not yet been able to get her out of the city. No, they would still be here. Somewhere. Here, where her creature