Wizard’s First Rule is the first book in the Sword of Truth fantasy series by Terry Goodkind. Wizard’s First Rule introduces you to Richard Cypher, a skilled woodsman and ranger in Westland who becomes a true hero.
If that plot sounds familiar, then you’ve read a fantasy novel of any kind. The normal, unassuming individual lives in peace with no idea of his or her waiting destiny until they are suddenly thrust into their fate. It is a very common theme for a heroic fantasy novel. However, Terry Goodkind takes this theme and places it in his world of unique magic, people, and history. A new system of magic is created for this world that is unique to me; Additive and Subtractive magics. Additive magic is the power to create, while Subtractive magic is the power to destroy. In the story, wizards are no longer born with the ability to use Subtractive magic, and have not been able to do so for 3,000 years, leaving magic somewhat lopsided. It is an interesting magical system that pairs well with the universe in which it resides.
Beyond the original cliched premise, the story itself is wonderful. It starts off slowly while setting up characters, locales, plot, etc, but once it has satisfactorily brought the reader up to speed, the story explodes. It is a very well written story and a great deal of fun to read. I’ve read through it a few times myself, and highly recommend it. Keep in mind, though, that this book is nearly 850 pages, and the first book in a series of 11. It’s less of a casual read and more of a part-time job.
-Because I said so