Review World of Warcraft: Illidan

I recently finished the book Illidan, written by William King, and who I recently had the chance to interview for episode 491 of the show. This book was sent to me by Blizzard, who I want to thank for the review copy. If you read this before Monday April 11th, be sure to answer our question of the week for episode 492 as we will give a copy of Illidan away to one of our lucky listeners. Now, let’s get on with the review.

Illidan Stormrage has always been a complicated character in Warcraft lore. He is an incredible anti hero, someone who has tried to save his people and his world, but done so through unconventional, not to mention controversial methods, much to the disappointment to his family and friends. Imprisoned for millennia, unable to die, but unable to truly live, Illidan’s mind was no doubt twisted in unknowable ways before his beloved released him.

This book starts with the telling of his release, and follows Illidan, at first loosely, through the events of the third war, Illidan’s consumption of the Skull of Gul’dan, all the way up to the fall of the Black Temple. It’s his time spent as the lords of Outland that is most heavily covered in this book, which makes sense as this is the time of Illidan’s life we know so little about.

We learn of the Demon Hunters that Illidan converted from Night and Blood Elves, the goals of his efforts, and a lot more about the class we will all soon be able to play. Let me tell you, the process of becoming a Demon Hunter is not one I would ever want to go through. The abilities are cool, but the cost is not an easy price, which becomes abundantly clear not only in this book, but in the Demon Hunter starting experience in Legion.

A good portion of this book is told from the vantage point of Vandel, a Night Elf man who witnessed demons killing his family before Illidan came in and slaughtered the forces of the Burning Legion. We read as Vandel pursues Illidan, and eventually becomes one of Illidan’s earliest Demon Hunters.

The tale of Vandel and his quest for vengeance upon those who took his family from him is an intriguing one, and while some might think it detracts from the story of the title character, I think it shows that Illidan is not the only one with a bone to pick with the lords of the Legion.

I really enjoyed seeing more about what Illidan was doing before we got to Outland, and his motivations behind his actions were really enlightening. For many people, new and old players alike, this book will be an eye opening journey into the mind of an Elf who has gone to great lengths, and expected places, all to try and defeat the group that is nigh unbeatable in the eyes of many, with some truly surprising and mind boggling events along the way.

You can follow William King on Twitter @WilliamKing9.

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