Kender, Gully Dwarves, and Gnomes Edited by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman Book Review
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Kender, Gully Dwarves, and Gnomes is a compilation of short stories featuring each of the three mentioned races. Though I would have loved to see more stories with gully dwarves. Out of the three I feel as though they are not visited as often in the Dragonlance series. Looked down on as lesser beings, I had hoped to see them receive more recognition in this short story anthology. There were also tales centered around dwarves, and if you know Dragonlance, you would know they would have preferred being part of the title. 🙂
Once again the companions make an appearance in a few of the short stories. But this time each one centers around Tas. From his adventures of being turned into a squirrel by an evil wizard, to his fascination with a magical flute, the stories featuring Tas were a delight to read. However, my favorite of them was Snowsong. It brought back memories of Flint and Tas’ antics from The Chronicles. Tas continued to wear down Flint’s patience by playing off-key tunes on a newly acquired flute. And if you’re familiar with Flint, the grumbly old dwarf made sure Tas knew his opinion on the matter. Tas’ innocence and good nature mesh so well with Flint’s irritable fussing.
The companions’ stories seem to always win my favor in these anthologies, but there was another story that equally captured my attention. The Storyteller. A storyteller by the name of Spinner inspires the hearts of Kenders, Dwarves, and Gnomes in a town occupied by the evil queen’s forces. As he spins tales of wonder, he brings joy to an otherwise bleak town. His impact is so profound he catches the eye of a Dragon Highlord who views his inspiring tales as a threat. The Storyteller explores the power behind creativity and imaginary worlds. There are also surprise twists along the way that will leave readers contemplating the story long after it is over.
I would advise reading Dragons of Summer Flame prior to reading Kender, Gully Dwarves, and Gnomes which means you will also have to read The Chronicles. There will be a bit of character confusion and light spoilers if you have not read them. However, this is a wonderful companion novel once you have. It will give background stories on characters readers are not allowed to spend much time with prior to these short stories. I look forward to continuing my adventure through the Tales anthologies.
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