Literature: War of the Spider Queen

War of the Spider Queen is a six-book series written by several authors and overseen by R.A. Salvatore. It takes place in the Forgotten Realms.

The series follows the adventures of a group of Drow as they search for the reason that Lloth, their goddess, has fallen silent. Their quest will take them around the world, and under it. Meanwhile, back at Menzoberranzan, the status quo has been upset.

The books and authors are as follows:
  • Dissolution - Richard L. Byers
  • Insurrection - Thomas M. Reid
  • Condemnation - Richard Baker
  • Extinction - Lisa Smedman
  • Annihilation - Philip Athans
  • Resurrection - Paul S. Kemp

There is a character sheet.

War of the Spider Queen contains the following tropes:

  • Absurdly Sharp Blade: Splitter and Gromph's magical vorpal blade.
  • Acquired Poison Immunity: Danifae had this in her Reaver-induced hallucination.
  • Affably Evil: Pharaun and Aliisza among others.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Ryld's death, as he pretty much gave everything up for a women he barely knew and was unsure actually cared about him. Halisstara's fate as well given the huge crisis of faith she ends up having.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: Gracklstugh and the Scoured Legion attacked Menzoberranzan thanks to Nimor's influence.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Being Drow, naturally the whole cast. Also see: Chronic Backstabbing Disorder
  • And Eye Must Scream: Horribly invoked in a scene after a Chaos demon has run through Arach Tinilith. Triel Baenre comes upon a priestess that has had her mind snapped by the demon, and is busy using the blood from her plucked out eyes (plucked out by herself) to draw symbols used to summon yet another demon. [[Squick]] factor is high here.
  • And Show It to You: Jeggred to Ryld.
  • Anyone Can Die: Six companions set out from Menzoberranzan, picking up two along the way. Guess how many survive?
  • Badass Bookworm: Pharaun and Gromph.
  • Bar Brawl: Ryld seems to have an affinity for them.
  • Bi the Way
  • Break the Haughty: Quenthel in Insurrection. She got better, however.
  • Brother-Sister Incest: Greyanna thought this was occurring between Pharaun and his other sister. She later offers herself to Pharaun in exchange for his loyalty only to have him laugh in her face.
  • But Thou Must: Invoked. Sure, Ryld and Pharaun, feel free to decline the mission given to you by the priestess of Lolth. She will then feel free to play her favorite game with you: torture you in various and creative and most of all skillful ways until you die. Then, get resurrected and get to do it all over again. Repeat until the priestess is bored. Was it mentioned that this priestess will most likely be a relative of yours?
  • Carnival of Killers: Gromph sending various demons after Quenthel.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Gromph uses the light crystal he took from Sluuguth to dispatch Nimor.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Seems to be a common trait among the drow. The main characters of the series spend more time trying to kill each other than they do on their actual mission.
  • Cobweb Jungle: Because everything having to do with spiders is sacred to Lolth, it's actually a crime to destroy a spider web in Menzoberranzan.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Done to Faeryl.
  • Contemptible Cover: The cover of the last book shows a nude woman only covered by strands of web.
  • Conveniently Timed Attack from Behind: Subverted in the three-way deathmatch between Quenthel, Danifae, and Halisstra. Halisstra hit Danifae with one just as the latter was about to kill Quenthel. It didn't take, unfortunately.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Pharaun
  • Dog Pile of Doom: While on the Ship of Chaos, lots and lots of rats swarmed Jeggred to try to take him down. It didn't work.
  • Door of Doom: The door to Lolth's personal domain in the old Demonweb Pits.
  • Elaborate Underground Base: Menzoberranzan.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: Danifae.
  • Eye Scream: After Gromph is blinded he has his subordinates take a captive's eyes for a transplant, using a sharpened spoon.
  • Final Battle: No less than three of them: Gromph vs. Dyrr, the entire party vs. the yugoloth army and the Mle Trois between Quenthel, Danifae, and Halisstra.
  • Great Escape: Ryld and Pharaun get one in Dissolution attempting to escape from the alhoon's cult.
  • Hand Signals: The drow have an entire language of these.
  • Hitchhiker Heroes: Halisstra and Danifae. Of course, since the original party had a hand in making them hitchhikers in the first place, it also ended up being a case of Teeth-Clenched Teamwork at first.
  • Ineffectual Death Threats: Quenthel constantly makes them to Pharaun throughout the series. It's eventually averted near the end of Resurrection.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters
  • Lovable Rogue: Pharaun and Valas
  • Lovable Traitor: Pharaun, to Ryld. His traitor status with the others, notably Quenthel, is much more vitriolic.
  • Make Room For The New Plot: Congratulations, Ryld and Pharaun, you helped stop the slave uprising! Now go find out what happened to Lolth.
  • More Deadly Than The Male
  • Molotov Cocktail: The stonefire bombs. Not only did they act as their real-life counterparts, they literally burned through stone.
  • No Endor Holocaust: The aftermath of the destruction of House Agrach Dyrr was never actually seen in story. Noticeably averted, however, during Dyrr and Gromph's battle in the Marketplace.
  • No Honor Among Thieves: Pharaun barely hesitated before leaving Ryld for dead in Dissolution.
  • Offhand Backhand: Vhaeraun does one with magic when Quenthel attacks his priest.
  • Our Elves Are Better: Drow are full of themselves.
  • Punched Across the Room: Things on the receiving end of one of Pharaun's Bigsby's (whatever) Hand spells are typically subject to this.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Run.
  • Religion of Evil
  • The Revolution Will Not Be Civilized: A good portion of Dissolution.
  • Royal Rapier: Pharaun starts off with a pimped-out dancing rapier that turns into a ring when he doesn't want it around. Helpfully, the dancing part bypasses the fact that he's a scrawny elf wizard.
  • Shaggy Dog Story: The heroes spend over five novels and several months to find out what happend to Lolth and how to fix it. With probably only about half an hour of marching before they finally find her, she wakes up all by herself and was never in any trouble to begin with.
  • Shaped Like Itself: Book 4 has:
    She pressed her lips against his, kissing him.
  • Sibling Rivalry: Quenthel and Gromph spend much of Dissolution trying to assassinate each other to various levels of failure. It gets to the point where it could be considered a Running Gag.
    • Greyanna and her sister, and then later Greyanna and Pharaun, all during the first book. This is pretty common among drow, however. Relatives are rivals, not friends.
  • Status Quo Is Goddess
  • Sword and Sorcerer: Type 1 with Ryld and Pharaun.
  • Summon Bigger Fish: Both Quenthel and Danifae summoned bigger fish (namely a klurichir and a giant spider hoarde) against the yugoloth army in Resurrection.
  • Taking Over the Town: The Jaezred Chaulssin took over the ruins of Ched Nesad after its destruction. They fully intend to rebuild it, as the beginning of the process was shown at the end of Resurrection.
  • Walk into Mordor: In order to get to the Planes of Soulfire, you have to walk through the Pass of the Soul Reaver. And survive a Mind Rape while you're there.
  • Whip It Good: Favored by Quenthel. Heck, favored by all of Lolth's priestesses. A whip made of snakes is a status symbol among the clergy, and all know how to use them to full effect.

Alternative Title(s):

War Of The Spider Queen