Read Well of Darkness by Margaret Weis Tracy Hickman Online


Second in line for succession to the throne, Prince Dagnarus will have his crown...and his queen -- though his heart's prize is a married elfin beauty. Let his hated half-brother Prince Helmos and the Dominion Lords dare to oppose him. For Dagnarus's most loyal servant has ventured into the terrible darkness, where lies the most potent talisman in the realm. And once it i Second in line for succession to the throne, Prince Dagnarus will have his crown...and his queen -- though his heart's prize is a married elfin beauty. Let his hated half-brother Prince Helmos and the Dominion Lords dare to oppose him. For Dagnarus's most loyal servant has ventured into the terrible darkness, where lies the most potent talisman in the realm. And once it is in the dark prince's hand, no power will deter his Destiny....

Title : Well of Darkness
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780006486145
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 599 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Well of Darkness Reviews

  • Sneakend
    2019-03-02 06:20

    I'm not sure what it was about this book, but I was hooked from page one. I used to be a huge fan of Weis and Hickman as a teenager and though I might not regard their writing as highly as I used to, I did not want to put this book down before I'd read all of it.It was interesting, the different races are not at all what you expect and I personally found the orks to be extremely humorous. I would read a whole book about them. And that is another aspect I always enjoyed in these writers' books: they're funny. Maybe it's not for everyone's tastes, but this book made me laugh and I was somewhat disappointed when the tone turned more serious towards the end. Not to say the beginning of the book didn't feel omnious enough.The characters aren't really that typical either, and while it may take some time for them to grow on you it's interesting to see some characters who aren't even trying to be heroic. Surely if it's heroes or good guys in general one enjoys reading about in their fantasy novel this probably isn't the best choice. But sometimes it's fun to get the other side of the story.

  • Kay Iscah
    2019-03-12 07:30

    Imagine the most spoiled brat you possibly can. Now imagine that kid gets older, but remains the same spoiled brat. That obnoxous, self-absorbed jock from highschool that got his way cause he was just so hot, only a hundred times worse, because he's a prince and power magnifies corruption.Now imagine despite being perfectly aware of all his characters flaws, everyone around him is dumb enough to keep giving him everything he wants regardless of the danger or damage to themselves or others.Now put this spoiled jock-brat in a D&D game and let him bully the DM into giving him god mode powers, and you've just about summed up the plot to Well of Darkness. Oh also he falls in lust at first sight with an elf, who also falls in lust with him after he gives her a necklace...she's really hot..and um, that seems to be entirety of her substance.Also there are superheroes in armor, who never do anything interesting with their powers. And a whipping boy, who like his master never grows out of his childhood role.It's good that not every protagonist in every story is a true blue hero, but if you're going to tell a story from the villain's point of view, at the very least make it interesting.The problem with Loerem is that it's boring. The evil-protagonist Dagnarus is boring. Gareth his whipping boy has the potential to be interesting, but never rises to it. The plot is fairly predictable. We're tempted with a big map, and then spend half the story inside the same building.There's an ongoing metaphor with the playroom, and if I was feeling super generous, I could say there's some moral about how never disciplining your children turns them into horrible people. But this falls so far into the "well, duh" category it's hard to justify the 500+ pages demonstrating it.This all could be forgivable if the story was interesting or was told in an interesting way, but it seems like everything worth seeing happens offscreen. We're left with predictions of what will happen and speculation about the meaning of things that have happened. Too much detail on this, too little on that. Lots of redundant information, which if trimmed back could save 100 pages without losing any information. Names reserved on things that seem like they should be common knowledge.Oh and a dragon shows up at the end of the story, because... um, dragons are cool?The highlight of this book was the orken, who had a refreshing pragmatism about them. It was at least a somewhat different take on orks.The dwarves were nomadic and rode horses, which...just kind of made them a bland group of nomads, interchangable with other rough nomadic groups. The Elves were given a cut and paste Chinese culture (down to the slant eyes...which seem to be pale blue and dark on the same character...) that merged with cut and paste Tolkien-esque D&D elf stuff. The humans are a lot of flash and no substance.In the back of the book is an advertisement for a roleplaying game which explains all the out of place world building that got in the way of the story, but doesn't really have me eager to go seek out the game. Loerem just doesn't seem like a fun place to either live or visit.It gets 2-stars for staying coherent and offering up an odd giggle or two, but can't be given anymore due to the extreme blandness of the fantasy and characters.

  • Berk
    2019-03-23 01:30

    I first read this book when I was eight years old and I honestly think it had a profound impact on my life. I looked at stories differently after experiencing the cold charm of Dagnarus. This story has so many jewels in it that I don't where to start counting my treasures. Characters are very complex in this book. Is someone a good guy or a bad guy? Who knows. Who is the main character, man? I mean, as an eight year old I was familiar with charming bad guys like Rastilin, but Gareth (and his demise) was such a blow to me. It was a truly 'what the fuck' moment. In the black company or Malus Darkblade series you don't notice the significance of having a main character that is truly villainous. Why? Because everyone is a pragmatic son of a bitch in those books. Well of Darkness has characters who are devoted to doing the right thing. But they lose.Ahhhh so good. Will read this again.

  • Estefania Jimenez
    2019-02-28 06:30

    Es una historia genial, pero muy lenta. Han querido meter demasiados detalles que no son relevantes para la historia y eso a mi parecer en vez de hacerlo interesante lo ha vuelto aburrido y lento la mayor parte del tiempo. Aun así, como digo, hay una gran historia escondida entre tanta paja y merece la pena llegar hasta el final, aunque me ha costado mucho tiempo terminarlo porque no conseguía engancharme. Sin embargo, leeré el segundo, porque el sabor de boca que me ha dejado en general es bueno.

  • Brenda
    2019-03-26 05:24

    **Spoiler Alert**I am a huge fan of Weis/Hickman, but this series is absolutely horrible. It is depressing and all of the characters I came to care about (which weren't many) were all senslessly destroyed at the end of the book. It is graphic (in more ways than one) and really never gets to the "point" of it all. I guess if I had continuted on to the next in the series I may have found out. I just couldn't bring myself to at the end of this one because of the nausious feeling when I thought about it. I just wish I could have returned the book when I was done because I feel as if I wasted $15 on the hardcover!!! Maybe Margaret and Tracy were hating on someone when they decided to pen this one and this was their outlet.

  • Steven
    2019-03-02 09:23

    The style ended up similar to the Weismann Hickman books i remember from my youth. I didn't care for the plot and it started insanely slow for me.

  • Stephanie - Adventures Thru Wonderland
    2019-03-08 07:12

    A very dark, and twisted tale. But a great read, and the start of an amazing trilogy! A must read for anyone who likes fantasy/epic adventures!

  • Mira
    2019-03-24 09:31

    A thoroughly miserable read.

  • James
    2019-03-08 07:30

    Fantastic! A great find

  • Nicholas
    2019-02-28 09:13

    The Well of Darkness focuses on main characters that would be considered evil in a standard medieval fantasy setting. Although, the authors have made subtle differences such as orks being a giant sea-faring race rather than being green-skinned monsters. The authors have decided to begin the story when the two protagonist are children so the audience can watch the events that unfold as they grow into adults. However, the authors have a habit of telling the audience what happened or why that happened rather than showing the reader. This can be seen when they tell the audience that one of the main character's father doesn't love his child, but doesn't show it when these characters interact. This is off-putting at times, considering the authors imply the lack of fatherly love is one of the biggest contributors to the character becoming a villain. Another problem would be the romance in the story due to the fact it is told rather than shown between two characters. In fact, these individuals are supposed to be having a loving affair that could plunge their nations into war as well as burning with passion. Instead, the first sex scene between the two is written in less than three sentences while the authors claim it is a whirlwind romance that has both characters heads over heels in love. It is disconcerting when these two lovers come from different races that can't interbreed, have considerably different life spans.The main characters are followers of void magic, or otherwise known as death magic that has a severe punishment for anyone caught, regardless of their station. In addition, the magi as well as the guards are aware of void-magic. But somehow, these two major characters surrounded by people who have been trained in these matters can't detect void magic. Not only that, someone suspects that these two protagonist are followers of the void, but doesn't say anything to spare his father's feelings. What about the people who have been trained to spot void-worshipers? For example, magi who would be able to sense void-magic, but it isn't really addressed in the story. On the other hand, the story takes the very unique approach of focusing on the bad guys as well as being incredibly interesting in watching the two main characters grow up from innocent children into bad guys.

  • M.A. Kropp
    2019-03-11 05:08

    This story is apparently based on a role-playing game, but since I am not into RPGs, I've never heard of it. I have, however, read many of Weis & Hickman's books, and generally enjoy them. This was no exception.I will warn readers that this is a very dark story. It begins with the choosing of nine year old Gareth to be the whipping boy for Prince Dagnarus (the authors will forgive me, please, for wanting to read that as Prince "Dagnabit" every time! I do have an odd sense of humor.) The whipping boy soon falls under the control of the charming, spoiled and selfish Prince. When Gareth shows an adept's talent for magic, especially the forbidden Void magic, the prince sets out to use his whipping boy to wrest the kingdom from his older brother, the Crown Prince.The story uses the four familiar races in fantasy: human, elf, dwarf and ork. But all three are given a twist. The elves have a very complex political and social system, dwarves are master horsemen and orks sail the sea and are fishermen. It makes for interesting reading, and puts enough spin on each race that they don't fall into stereotype.The main draw to this book is the world building, something these authors do excel at. Each race is distinct, with its own politics, religion and social structure. Where they come together, the overlapping differences and divisions make up the background for the main story. The setting is confined and we don't see a lot of the other races' homelands, but the human world (where most of the story takes place) is well-drawn and detailed. There is little to relieve the dark tone of the book: Gareth's parents care more for their position in court than for their son, Dagnarus is vain and bent on defeating his brother and becoming King, Gareth is torn and guilt-ridden, unable through most of the story to face up to Dagnarus. It could be a bit off-putting to some readers because of the tone. I found it fascinating.I look forward to reading the rest of the trilogy at some point.

  • Tim
    2019-03-21 04:34

    De eerste hoofdstukken waren een heel moeilijke start en moeilijk om door te komen. Ik miste wel een beetje (klein beetje ) het 'fantasy'-achtige van Poort Des Doods of De Roos Van De Profeet. De Verheven Steen neigt meer naar de Middeleeuwen ofzo, met al die hofdames en dienaars en zo. Anders gezegd, het is meer een mix van realiteit en fantasy. Het moet echter gezegd: Dagnarus is me wel een heel vervelend kereltje, altijd alles willen weten, altijd z'n zin krijgen, ... opgefokt doen omdat ie prins is, enz. Wel is het leuk dat er weer wat magie voorkomt, nu met die 4 cirkels rondom de Leegte (Aarde, Water, Vuur en Wind).En z'n moeder, zo'n trut (excuseer voor deze term). Zo te zien heeft die niet echt veel verstand, maar voelt ze zich wel 'queen' en beter als alle andere, maar durft ze ook niet opkomen tegen haar zoon, Dagnarus. Eerder een ijdel type en als ze al eens iets moet doen, is het al teveel voor haar.Gareth mag anders ook wel eens uitkomen voor z'n mening, maar dan wordt dat zijn en z'n families ondergang. Maar algemeen genomen was BVD een zeer goed boek, met enkele onverwachte wendingen, imo. Vooral dat Dagnarus veel extremer into De Leegte zou zijn dan Gareth. Toen Dagnarus bij de transfiguratie verbrand werd, dacht ik enigszins van 'yes, krijgt ie eindelijk lik op stuk!', maar bleek dat ie dan terug tot leven kwam, mede dankzij De Leegte. En dat ie dan zo tekeer zou gaan tegen z'n eigen volk, z'n eigen familie... Komt daarbij dat ie ook nog eens een alcoholicus is en per se de Steen wil.Spijtig dat Helmos niet meer een vechtertje was, dan kwam er wellicht nog een leuke strijd van om de Steen te beschermen. Wel leuk dat een baak hem dat afhandig maakte. Maar naar waar werd Dagnarus gekatapulteerd? En hoe is het verder afgelopen met Shakur en de rest van de Vrykyl, en de gevluchte inwoners van Vinnegael, enz...? Dat viel dan te lezen in het volgende boek.

  • Rebecca
    2019-03-02 03:16

    Some people may recognize the name Weis and Hickman from their very popular Dragonlance series. Well of Darkness is the first book in a series based off of a role-playing game, The Sovereign Stone. I have never seen, much less played that game but it isn't really necessary to enjoy the book.This is definitely a series for the lover of dark fantasy. The story follows Garreth, the young whipping boy of Prince Dagnarus. For no one would dare harm the prince when he acts out, they lash the whipping boy instead. Since these two boys grow up together, they eventually become close friends. Prince Dagnarus is quite evil as a boy and young man. He despises his brother, the heir to the throne, and makes it his mission to see himself in his brother's stead. He makes Garreth turn to practicing the dark arts and the magic of the Void in order to fulfill Dagnarus's dark need to be in power.This book has a lot of the elements that most fantasy stories have. The token races (human, elves, dwarfs, and orcs) are all there and each with their own personalities that is a new take on the norm. There isn't really a "good guy", but I enjoy that kind of storytelling. It is similar to the song of Ice and Fire series by George R. R. Martin. Sometimes, the bad guys just win and that's they way of things. It is refreshing really to not have the "knight in shining armor" aspect like so many other books (including the aforementioned Dragonlance series). I do feel that the ending is a bit sub-par, but I didn't let that stop me from continuing the series. What is great about the other two books is that even though it is a continuation of the main story, they take place in the future with a whole different cast of characters, adding even more depth and build-up to the final conclusion.Find more of my reviews at

  • Kimberly
    2019-03-03 08:11

    A few weeks ago I remembered that I once read a little piece of a fantasynovel in which a boy with a port-wine stain starred. I couldn't remember the name of the novel, and it took me a while to finally remember that it was definitely written by Weis & Hickman. After that, the search ended quite soon. The Sovereign Stone! I remember that a chapter of 'Well of Darkness' was once covered in a Dutch fantasy magazine and now that I found out which novel/series it was, I had to start reading immediately.Gareth! I read the first lines of chapter one and everything came back to me. That is, everything that I read in that chapter that was in the Dutch magazine. Strangely enough, the plot of novel three seemed so familiar, even though I surely haven't read it yet. But let's start with 'Well of Darkness'. Dagnarus is a pain in the ass. I don't like him at all. From the first moment he arrives in the novel until the very end of the book. I could tell from the first moment he was going to be trouble, and my, did he turn out to be trouble. Poor Gareth doesn't have a backbone at all in the novel.. Perhaps only in the last moments of his life, where he FINALLY stands up against his prince. Nice reward he gets for that..The whole thing with the Domainlords are new to me, and I've read some fantasy in my 24 years. I liked the idea of 'knights', each with a particular area to be concerned about. Helmos' nomination of Lord of Sorrows told me enough. He would not see the next novel.I only gave it four stars, mainly because Dagnarus is annoying and Gareth is a pussy. I wonder who will stand up to Dagnarus in the next two novels. I sure hope they are more tough/awesome than Gareth...

  • Lindsay Stares
    2019-03-05 05:35

    Nothing jaw-dropping, no brilliant characters or plots here, but okay structure, an interesting magic system, and cool world-building. Cool world-building is really what I expect from these guys.Here we've got your standard fantasy world with a nice subtle twist. They've kept something core about each race, and just given a perspective shift on the rest. For example, the elves, as expected, love nature, live mostly in fancy gardens, and are contemplative. They are also inspired by aspects of various Asian cultures and history. Their society is very complex, they are very concerned with saving face and honor and their family position, they seek wisdom from their deceased ancestors, and they are highly warlike, just subtle about it. It stays true enough to a classic elf to be instantly recognizable, but is still a really interesting take.Read my whole review at The Blue Fairy's Bookshelf.

  • Blake
    2019-03-20 02:12

    An enjoyable, more adult work from the prolific team of Weis and Hickman. I'm a big sucker for fantasy/medieval politics, and this book handled it well, giving as assassination, betrayal, underhanded scheming, manipulation, spying, all sorts of fun stuff. Some may not like the world-building, which can border on excessive at times. I like these sorts of details, personally, and they're inserted pretty tactfully here; any time the writers go off on a tangent, it has at least some bearing on the current situation. There were some issues with the pacing. It takes a while for the book to really get moving. The first two-thirds are primarily spent setting up the dominoes. Once they start to fall, however, it gets exciting.The climax was sufficient. They left enough sequel hooks to justify a second book, and they baited them well enough to make me want to read it. Which I will.

  • Fantasy Literature
    2019-03-24 07:36

    I bought Well of Darkness in hardcover years ago in the bargain bin. I should have left it there. I have tried starting it three or four times, and I, for the life of me, cannot get past the second chapter. It is totally boring and un-engaging, and I instantly disliked the characters I was reading about. Therefore, I really can’t say much more about the book. I rarely get so turned off so early in a book, and Weis and Hickman have written some pretty entertaining stuff (DRAGONLANCE), if not high literature. I loved DRAGONLANCE back in the 1980's when it came out, but I couldn’t stand this thing.So, my view is, don’t read Well of Darkness. Mine is finally going to the ... Read More:

  • DulleNL
    2019-03-07 04:36

    Dit boek is anders dan ik gewend ben van fantasy. In plaats dat er een groep helden achter een of andere duistere heer aan zit gaat het hele boek eigenlijk over de opkomst en herkomst van die 'duistere heer'. Terwijl andere boeken hier normaal gesproken dus maar een hoofdstukje aan besteden.Het is... anders. Niet slecht, helemaal niet. Maar het boek heeft te lang nodig om op gang te komen, en als je dan eindelijk aan de actie toe komt lijkt dat wel erg snel afgeraffeld te worden.Epiloog zorgt er wel voor dat ik benieuwd ben naar het volgende deel. Hopelijk heeft die niet meer zo lang nodig om op gang te komen aangezien we de wereld en personages nu al kennen.3,5 ster. Deze keer naar beneden afgerond.

  • Gerald Heath
    2019-03-09 09:14

    While the book had its interesting moments, I was not particularly impressed. In a fantasy series, I usually like to have at least one character I can root for. In this book the good people were either weak, or naive, and the evil people were,,,,,evil. Nobody even approached being heroic. Actually, my favorite character was Dagnarus, who was the villain. I know these authors can write, as I had previously read the Deathgate books, so I will give the second book of this trilogy a try. However, they need to give me something decent to chew on within the first hundred pages or I will have to write it off.

  • Amanda Hamilton
    2019-02-25 03:16

    I like how reading this book dovetailed nicely with watching "Escaflowne" with the blending of fantasy and also the (spoiler alert) raising an undead army after I watched "Re-Animator" earlier today. I like the different feeling this book gave, more like horror fantasy than what I was expecting. (The cover is kind of terrible-looking, though) Granted, this shift is very gradually and once Dagnarus tells Gareth to look into Void magic, things start moving towards a very slippery slope as the boys both become corrupted. It could be argued that all this might be sudden or jarring but I was all for it, as compelling Dagnarus' lust for power and his transformation into the Lord of the Void.

  • Chandra
    2019-03-13 07:17

    I picked this up solely based on the who the authors were and the cover artist. I continued, drawn on mostly by it being told from the point of view of Gareth the whipping boy. After the children are grown, it was like a train wreck that you can't look away from, even if you can guess what might happen to all involved. Luckily, I had picked up the second book in the trilogy, so I'm starting that immediately! In the end, I'll probably judge the whole trilogy as a trilogy rather than individual books.

  • Jason
    2019-03-17 04:18

    Was given to me by someone that's a little over stocked on books and expected a good read like the others I've received but this book surprised me. All of the characters have distinctive personalities and it's hard not to get attached to Gareth - the whipping boy. The writter has a great style that flows smoothly throughout the book and doesn't leave you wanting to follow one character more than the others - good timing. I haven't read much fantasy besides LOR trilogy and like the cultural differences between the races and the imaginative severity of good and evil.

  • Craig
    2019-03-21 02:14

    Slow starter but a strong finish. The authors put some twists on the races but this is a straight up fantasy novel based off of an RPG I've never heard of. The characters were well written but I never found myself connecting with any of them. There are really no characters in this book that you really want to like (which I find typical in Weis/Hickman novels).I'd recommend it but know that it is Book 1 of the trilogy and the next 2 parts aren't written.Side note - I picked this book up at GenCon in August and had the authors sign it at their booth!

  • Mykle Law
    2019-03-11 05:12

    I liked this book, although I'm realizing that Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman are not the authors I once thought they were. Of course that comes as no surprise. This was mostly fun for the interesting twists they did with old ideas. Orks sail the sea and are inventors, Elves live and die by honor of the sword with a sort of oriental flavor to them, and Dwarves ride the plains on the backs of shaggy ponies.

  • Antonio Simon Jr.
    2019-03-17 01:13

    Epic tale of sword and sorcery fantasy, with plenty of intrigue in the mix. The writing gets a bit dense at times, but that's only because a whole lot is happening. Between the main characters' slow descent into depravity (this starts at childhood and proceeds through adulthood) and external pressures, a whole lot takes place in this novel. You'd do well to pay attention to get the most out of it. A fun, satisfying read.

  • Lynn Orser
    2019-03-16 06:07

    I really enjoyed this book. The authors have written a much darker book than their early writings. It's fun to hate the main characters in a novel. Reminds me of the Thomas Convent Chronicles in which you loathe the main character. I am looking forward to book two in the series which I should get to soon.

  • Jeannie Lee
    2019-03-16 07:18

    Disturbing. Not their usual writing. Although, it has stayed with me. I may reread it to give it another shot and try to stomach the horrendous things that happen. It's definitely not Krynn, or even related to Krynn. Forget all about Krynn and all other magical worlds and lands. This is a new one that will need some getting used to. I may learn to enjoy it.

  • Saskia (Smitie)
    2019-03-26 07:29

    Whrn reading the slow start, I was in doubt if I should continue. I did continue and I'm glad I did. After the slow first part, the story picks up the pace and gives a uncommon story, the story of the villian. I started to get interested in the characters, the politics and the magic of the void. I'm not sure if I will read the other books, but this was a decent introduction to a series.

  • Vera
    2019-03-06 03:31

    I had forgotten how hard this book was to get into, because the prince is really hard to like and Gareth is so submissive. But I like Silwyth. Precious adventurous elf with your quiet thoughts on elven life

  • Heather
    2019-03-06 03:27

    After slogging few the first few chapters, I just couldn't finish the book so I stopped reading it - which is something I almost never do. I thought it seemed like an exercise for a beginning writer to try and come up with a new world and characters . . . too much setting up and not enough story.