This article was originally published on Ferretbrain. I’ve backdated it to its original Ferretbrain publication date but it may have been edited and amended since its original appearance.
Decades have passed since the fall of the Warlock Lord; Will Ohmsford, grandson of Shea, is training under the friendly Gnomes of Storlock to become a healer, when from out of the depths of history steps Allanon, aged not a whit since the events of The Sword of Shannara, to bestow another quest of world-shattering importance.
You see, off in the Westland ruled by the Elves there is a magical tree called the Ellcrys. Before nuclear armageddon wrought a New World from the ashes of the Old, before even the Old World’s own history came to pass, the elves were benign spiritual entities oriented towards life and preservation of the land. They fought a terrible war against the demons, spiritual entities of chaos and hatred and destruction, and eventually won it through establishing the Forbidding – a mystical banishment of the demons to another dimension, accomplished and sustained by a magical tree called the Ellcrys.