I know Terry Brooks doesn’t seem to get a lot of love here, but I picked up his second book (by mistake) in my HS library as a kid and couldn’t put it down. 700 pages in one day, and boy was my vision blurry after that.
Now, after the first trilogy (which was all self-contained stories with a definitive beginning and end for each set of characters), he switched to longer, to-be-continued type series, typically with several cliffhangers at the end of each novel. But, they were still decent reads (though I think things started to go downhill somewhere after Druid of Shannarra) and I’ve picked them up (not with any sense of urgency) just to find out how his world is maturing.
I also read his Word/Void series (wierdly enough also starting with the second novel by mistake), and it followed the same general pattern as the early Shannarra books, that is, each story was self contained but had references to earlier works.
For my birthday, my wife got me a copy of Armageddon’s Children, set in the Word/Void universe, though many years into the future. I was happily enjoying the read, but getting curious as to how he was going to wrap up all the plotlines in one book, when about halfway in, there’s a reference to (and this is a serious spoiler):
The Ellcrys, the legendary tree which holds the wall of forbidding against demonkind, which plays a substantial part in the Shannarra series.
So needless to say I was taken aback, and was not surprised when the book ended with several cliffhangers.
Any other fans been keeping up with his work? I was surprised to find out, when looking for stuff about this series, that he completed a whole new series in the Shannarra universe after the Jerle Shannarra saga had completed. I have that checked out of the library right now.