Redwall by Brian Jack is fun as a one off, but I confess they were a little too nicy nice for my liking, indeed the very obvious good guys and bad guys and the excess of cutesy among the good animals rather put me off, I have read several of them but don't particularly plan to read more since they're very obviously aimed at kids and unlike a lot of the kids books I like, they are a bit too simplistic for an adult to enjoy. Indeed in one sence they could be called "racist" sinse pretty much any animal classified as vermin eg stoats, weasels, rats etc automatically behaves like the most cliche sort of fantasy orc, full of just plane eeeeevil!
Ironically a friend of mine said when she and her sister were 10, her sister was bought the Redwall books, and hshe was bought the Detford mice series by Robin jarvis, which, though again classified as kids are just plane bloody evil and anything! but cutesy, featuring heads wripping off, animal sacrifice to dark gods , impailings and a lot! of characters being literally skinned alive (really the books are just plane vile, and those you can! read as an adult).
apparently the contrast was quite stark .
As regards the Valdamar books, i did read and review the first trilogy, heralds of valdamar ie arrows of the queen, arrows flight and arrow's fall, (I do intend to read the mage winds series that follow on from them).
they were decent enough stories, but the problem was they felt waaaaaay too safe and free of conflict and also if Grryf doesn't like romance that series might not work, indeed Mercedes Lackey is the only author I know who has basically a series all about a teenaged girl growing up in the first two books, finding a handsome man to sleep with apart from the man she adores, and then suddenly remembering she is supposed to be writing a fantasy series in th e third book and having said girl horribly and graphically tortured! .
They were her first books though and it's entirely possible they continue later, indeed I do enjoy Lackey's rather offbeat take on super heroes the secret world chronicle. You can find my reviews for the three heralds of Valdamar books on fantasybookreview.co.uk.
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