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I've been recently trying to read Gollanz's collection of Sci-Fi Masterworks, however the last few have been heavy going so I've shifted into their more accessible Fantasy Masterworks series. People who read fantasy novels are usually derided for liking elves, dragons and witches - but if you've read Lord of the Rings, you'll know theres a lot more to them than that.
One thing that is always incredibly difficult about reading Sci-Fi and Fantasy is that the characters have some really weird names, and it's very difficult to keep on op of who and what they are doing. The Forgotten Beast of Eld is different, as its very readable and the characters are easy to keep on track of. At fewer than 200 pages, it's also not too lengthy and boring.
Ptricia A, McKillip won the 1975 World Fantasy Award for this novel. It tells the story of Sybel, a witch type character who lives alone in a house on a mountain. She's a bit of a loner, but she is able to communicate to the strange mythical creatures who populate the mountainside with her.
One night, Sybel is visited by Coren of Sirle wwho delivers her a baby called Tamlorn. Tamlorn lives with Sybel for 14 years and she treats him like her own until Coren returns. She refuses to give Coren Tamlorn and gives Tamlorn back to his real father the King, Drede.
If you like your fantasy novels and you like them brief, then The Forgotten Beast of Eld will be right up your street. Theres not a huge amount that really happens, but its well written. The dialogue can be quite clunky at times and hardly Shakespeare, but anything more complicated and I would probably have given up a lot sooner.
The novel is good addition to the series, which is a must for all sci fi and fantasy fans.