Wizards First Rule Sword Truth
Despite what others say about this book and the series that follow it, Goodkind does an amazing job of storytelling. There is a saying, "there is nothing new under the sun," and this holds true in writing fantasy as well.
There are only so many ways you can tell the story of one destined to discover himself and overcome evil. What sets books apart are the authors and their delivery of the story. In this book and the Sword of Truth series Goodkind writes in a style that doesn't drag the story down with too much detail (something Stephen King is bad about, and in the world of fantasy, something I couldn't get past in George R. R. Martin's first book) but he doesn't leave so much detail out that you dont have a connection with the book.
Throughout this entire series Goodkind makes a connection between the reader and the characters. I've tried reading all sorts of books only to find myself put off by complicated names of an author trying to hard to distance their book from reality, too much detail that bores me and drags the story down, and the like. George R.R. Martin is the latest offender in this. Granted it may be a great book and series but I cant get past the story jumping around every chapter and following different lines.
With all of that said, Terry Goodkind's works are the only books I've ever been so involved in that I go to bed much later than I should reading them, only to find myself waking up an hour or two earlier than I normally do just to get more reading in before school or work. Maybe this book doesn't appeal to older people, but I started reading this series when I was 16 years old in high school, and now I'm out of college and intensely in the middle of Chainfire, Goodkind's latest book in the series.
The ONLY thing that seems repetative about any of Goodkind's books is the constant folly that Richard faces through the series, but Goodkind pulls it off. Maybe those who think Goodkind is being preachy in his works have no morals or are of such a simplistic mindset that they cant entertain and appreciate thoughts and beliefs that dont parallel their own, but if you're an educated and open minded person who likes a great story that is a bit more "real world" with a twist of classic fantasy (magic and the like) then Goodkind's series should be right up your ally. Do yourself a favor and pick up Wizard's First Rule.