Yeah, I’m only, like, a few years late. After buying the War of the Ancients trilogy months ago, I finally actually picked it up and started reading, and now have finished the first book in the trilogy, The Well of Eternity. You’ll hear my thoughts on the writing style in this week’s WoWCast, but for the purposes of this post, I thought it’d be fun to talk a bit about the lore I’ve picked up so far.
As a preface, you should know that this was my first time reading a novel based in the Warcraft universe. Some of you reading may be thinking, well, of course you’re going to pick up lore and back story when reading Warcraft-themed novels. And I did. But it was more than that — at least, much more than I expected.
The telling of this story has a beautiful way of interweaving the past and the (relatively) current eras of Azeroth. The story is told through the eyes of some characters whose names you’ll at least recognize, and some who you’ve probably even encountered in-game, either in World of Warcraft or earlier iterations of the story — Illidan Stormrage, Korialstrasz / Krasus, Tyrande Whisperwind, Malfurion Stormrage, Broxigar, Cenarius, Rhonin, Mannoroth — all play significant roles in the telling of the tale that leads up to the first coming of the Burning Legion.
But I would argue that, when you truly allow yourself to be taken in by the story, it becomes a matter much greater than just knowing the detailed lore surrounding the events. Author Richard Knaak allows readers the privilege of peering into the thoughts of each character. Not only do we see what they do, but we also learn the intimacies of their motivations, their secrets, the happenings that not even others in the story may understand.