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Literature / Shadowleague

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The Shadowleague trilogy, by Maggie Furey, is a fantasy trilogy. The three books all tell one story—only the first one could ever be said to stand alone, and that's pushing it—but from so many different viewpoints that it takes a while for everything to come together. The main premise of the books is that Curtain Walls divide the world of Myrial into separate countries, and now those barriers are failing, damaging ecosystems and causing conflict.

  1. The Heart of Myrial (1999)
  2. The Spirit of the Stone (2001)
  3. The Eye of Eternity (Echo of Eternity in the US) (2002)

Major characters include Veldan, a Loremaster from the Shadowleague (which is dedicated to maintaining the Curtain Walls) and her partner Kazairl. By the end of the first book, they have teamed up with an old but tough warrior woman named Toulac and Veldan's estranged fellow Loremaster, Elion. Minor characters such as Aliana, a thief, and Seriema, a noblewoman without a home, also take their turns in the spotlight.

This trilogy contains examples of:

  • Break the Cutie - Lots of characters go through this in the series, but especially Rochalla, Scall, and Annas.
  • Broken Bird - When we meet Rochalla in the first book, she fits this trope perfectly, though she (oddly enough) gets better when she is forced to flee for her life with a bunch of strangers.
  • Cardboard Prison - In the second book, Cergorn decides to imprison Veldan and Kazairl. In their house. Guarded by their friends. It wasn't his day.
  • Corrupt Church - The church in Callisoria, though it improves once disaster strikes and Gilarra replaces the old Hierarch.
  • Dramatic Wind - Shree, a wind sprite, mocks this trope, and her partner Elion mentions that she tends to blow up out of nowhere at dramatic moments.
  • Empathic Environment - The weather in Callisoria mirrors the state of the Curtain Walls, which the heroes are trying to save. Hence, it ends up mirroring their moods almost exactly.
  • Fish out of Water - Zavahl and, to a lesser extent, Toulac in Gendival—the hundreds of different sentient creatures throw them off.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold - Rochalla, who is only a prostitute because she needs to buy medicine for her younger brothers and sisters, all of whom are dying of the plague.
  • MacGuffin - There's the Heart of Myrial, and the Hierarch's ring is a borderline example after Gilarra loses it to the Ak'Zahar.
  • Magnetic Hero - Amaurn in the second book, though, unusually for this trope, he's very much an Anti-Hero.
  • The Medic - Kaita, her friend Evelinden (before she died), and the other Callisorian healers.
  • Mooks - The Godswords are this in the first book, before their collective Heel–Face Turn. It makes one wonder why more mooks don't switch sides.
  • Never Mess with Granny - Toulac (a career soldier who was kicked out of the army when the Hierarch decided women weren't fit to fight) is this.
  • No Guy Wants an Amazon - Toulac, a retired soldier, pokes fun at this trope on occasion, saying that the only truth in it lies in the fact that men think it's true, and thus avoid strong women because they don't want to be looked down on.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: The Dragons look like standard Western dragons, but as they get nourishment from photosynthesis and are filled with oodles of interesting psychic powers, the more conventional fire-breathin', meat-eatin' dragon demographic is actually represented by the firedrakes. (Both varieties—like most principals in this series—tend to be telepaths.)