4

Terry Brooks wrote what I thought were two independent series, the Void Trilogy (Also known as the Word and the Void series), and the Shannara series of books.

However, with the series Genesis of Shannara, Brooks ties the two series together, with modern Earth as we know it going through an apocolypse, and emerging out the other side as the world we know in Shannara.

Was this an intentional tie-in that was planned from the beginning, or was it something that occurred to the author after several books had been written?

  • You can see in a few of the early books some similarities to the Word and Void trilogy and Shannara, the Mwellrets in Wishsong of Shannara are very reminiscent of the servants of the Void for instance. Whether a full cross-over was planned I don't know though. – Daishozen Oct 16 '17 at 21:10
  • I can tell you, anecdotally, that plenty of Brooks' fans had remarked upon the similarity at the height of his popularity in the 1990s. – Buzz Oct 16 '17 at 21:57
  • @JohnP, The 'Void Trilogy' link in your post links to a wrong wiki page. – TimSparrow Oct 18 '17 at 12:44
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After a little more digging around, I found a couple of links that referred me to a couple of reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) sessions with Terry Brooks from 2013 and 2014, so the answer is:

Mostly NO

From the AMA of July 2014:

Question:

  1. I enjoyed the hell out of the Genesis trilogy - it's a toss up between that and Elfstones for my favorite of yours. Had you always planned from the beginning to connect the Word and the Void books with the Shannara books?

Answer (Which gives the vague "yes there was" sense):

2.Not exactly. There is a small connection, but I have left it vague on purpose. Word & Void is its own series.

This suggests that there was possibly intended to be a connection, but is basically contradicted in the AMA chat from March 2013:

Question:

Had you always planned to tie Word/Void into Shannara? Or was that more of a happy accident?

Answer:

No. It was an idea that came about when I started thinking about where to take Word/Void next. It just seemed so logical when I thought about it. Both were post-apocalyptic. Both involved castastrophic endings for the old world. I wasn't sure, but it worked out.

2

Not originally. Originally they were completely separate, although with similar themes. Brooks tied them together with the Genesis of Shannara series. I remember reading on his website his intention to combine the two worlds - I was very excited about the idea. For years I hoped that he would also include the Magic Kingdom series somehow.

2

Yes

The world of Shannara is initially described as post-apocalyptic. The Great Wars are first mentioned in The Sword Of Shannara, where Allanon re-tells the past history of the world to the Ohmsford brothers. Also he mentions that the Druids of old (First Druid Order) were initially trying to recover old sciences, not magic.

The next link is the robotic monster that attacks the party on the way from Culhaven to Paranor. It clearly hints that the creature is based on the old world's artificial intelligence.

In the third book, The Wishsong of Shannara, it is hinted that magic may be gone and replaced by something else, possibly by the sciences of old. However, that never happened.

In the Voyage of Jerle Shannara trilogy, we see another AI monster of the old age named Antrax, which is described as a very advanced supercomputer capable of self-maintenance and creating cyborg-like creatures (wronks) out of living things

The Word is first mentioned in the original Shannara novels by The King Of The Silver River, stating that The Word has created this world.

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