Terry Brooks fans are in for a treat this year!

Wards of Faerie, Book I in The Dark Legacy of Shannara series, will be published on August, 21 2012! It is the story set 100 years after the events of the High Druid of Shannara trilogy, where the people of the Four Lands have become largely distrusting of magic after the failed Third Council of Druids. But when a Druid stumbles upon information that might lead to the re-discovery of the lost Elfstones of Faerie, Ard Rhys of Paranor Khyber Elessedil must decide to undertake the most dangerous of missions to acquire them—at all costs.

Here is the dust jacket copy:

Seven years after the conclusion of the High Druid of Shannara trilogy, New York Times bestselling author Terry Brooks at last revisits one of the most popular eras in the legendary epic fantasy series that has spellbound readers for more than three decades.

When the world was young, and its name was Faerie, the power of magic ruled—and the Elfstones warded the race of Elves and their lands, keeping evil at bay. But when an Elven girl fell hopelessly in love with a Darkling boy of the Void, he carried away more than her heart.

Thousands of years later, tumultuous times are upon the world now known as the Four Lands. Users of magic are in conflict with proponents of science. Elves have distanced their society from the other races. The dwindling Druid order and its teachings are threatened with extinction. A sinister politician has used treachery and murder to rise as prime minister of the mighty Federation. Meanwhile, poring through a long-forgotten diary, the young Druid Aphenglow Elessedil has stumbled upon the secret account of an Elven girl’s heartbreak and the shocking truth about the vanished Elfstones. But never has a little knowledge been so very dangerous—as Aphenglow quickly learns when she’s set upon by assassins.

Yet there can be no turning back from the road to which fate has steered her. For whoever captures the Elfstones and their untold powers will surely hold the advantage in the devastating clash to come. But Aphenglow and her allies—Druids, Elves, and humans alike—remember the monstrous history of the Demon War, and they know that the Four Lands will never survive another reign of darkness. But whether they themselves can survive the attempt to stem that tide is another question entirely.

To celebrate this year’s release of Wards of Faerie, Terry and Del Rey Books are doing something really special for one reason: Terry has gotten ahead of his publishing schedule. He has been finished with The Wards of Faerie and its sequel for almost a year, and he is finishing the last book in the set and plans to have it finished by June 2012. That means he is two full years ahead of schedule with his writing. As a way to celebrate the 35th publication anniversary of The Sword of Shannara and to give his fans a huge thank you for reading him all of those years, Terry and Del Rey Books have agreed to publish the three books in The Dark Legacy of Shannara series in six month increments beginning August 2012!

That means fans will be able to read the entirety of The Dark Legacy of Shannara trilogy in the span of a year—August 2012 (Wards of Faerie), March 2013 (Book II), and August 2013 (Book III) respectively!

But that’s not all. Del Rey Books has agreed to make Wards of Faerie a very special publication in its own right. Here are the highlights:

  • Interior color for the first time since publication of The Sword of Shannara, supplied by the fantastic Todd Lockwood
  • A new two-page map of the Four Lands by Russ Charpentier
  • Detailed schematics of Paranor by David Cherry

Book I in The Dark Legacy of Shannara is titled Wards of Faerie! It will be published on August 21, 2012 and be the beginning of something truly special!

And as a treat, here is Terry explaining about the new book and reading an excerpt from Wards of Faerie!

More when it happens! Stay tuned!

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Written by Shawn Speakman
I am the long-time friend and webmaster for Terry Brooks as well as the author of The Dark Thorn, an urban/epic fantasy hybrid novel Terry calls "a fine tale by a talented writer." Join me on Facebook and Twitter (@shawnspeakman)!