Adam over at the Wertzone wrote an article about some of the books, movies, etc, that came out ten years ago. I noticed that one of the books mentioned was Raymond Feist's Krondor: The Betrayal. There's nothing particularly significant about that...other than the fact that Krondor: The Betrayal is hands-down the worst fantasy novel that I've ever read.
I've always wondered how Feist - who wrote the classic epic fantasy novel Magician, as well as the very good Serpent War saga - managed to write such a shockingly bad novel.
There's only one redeeming feature about this book: it's not very long. Otherwise, it's a wonderful example of how not to write a fantasy novel. The plot is horribly linear with no surprises or memorable scenes, probably due to the fact that it was based on a video game of a similar name (which ironically was well-received by critics at the time of release).
The characters are depressingly dull and one-dimensional with no dynamic at all in their relationships. The writing itself totally lacks enthusiasm and flair. Granted, Feist was going through a divorce at the time, and clearly his head just wasn't in the right place. But still, that doesn't wholly explain it - the subsequent Krondor books (Assassins and Tear of the Gods) were not much better.
Even when you consider Feist's personal circumstances and the fact that he'd been hamstrung by the limits of the earlier computer game, it's still a terrible novel by his standards. In fact, worse than that - it could be argued that Krondor: The Betrayal signalled the start of Feist's decline in terms of the quality of his work. He might be as popular as ever (there was certainly a big turn-out for the signing I went to not so long ago) but the novels he's written since have been far short of the quality of his earlier work (though I ought to point out I've not read his most recent efforts).
All in all, an awful novel.
So, that's mine. Anyone else like to share their all-time worst fantasy novel?