D&D 40th Anniversary Blog Hop #22: First D&D novel

First D&D novel you read.

The first D&D book I read was Dungeon of Dread (Endless Quest #1) but since this question specifically asks about novels, we’ll just disregard this and all the other TSR gamebooks I read in elementary school…  The first D&D novel I ever read was The Crystal Shard by R. A. Salvatore, which I found on a spinner rack in my high school library sometime in 1992-93.  I really liked it, and subsequently tracked down the two other volumes in the trilogy.  I never caught the Drizzt-fever and was thankfully never left shaking with a desire to play an outcast, good-aligned, dual-scimitar-wielding Dark Elf Ranger.  I will confess that one of the most annoying PCs I ever had to DM was an unholy combination of Drizzt (renegade Drow) and Raistlin Majere (brooding wizard) from the Dragonlance series…

As an aside — the first D&D novel I wanted to read was the original Dragonlance Chronicles, purely on the basis of the Elmore covers which as a kid I thought were among the coolest covers I had ever seen.  I didn’t actually read the Chronicles until I was in college, and when I did I was completely underwhelmed by them — probably because I had built up the awesomeness so high in my mind as a kid…  (“How can a book with a cover this cool not be awesome?”)

The Icewind Dale Trilogy and Dragonlance Chronicles are the only officially-licensed D&D novels* I can remember reading, and will likely remain so.  Nowadays I generally avoid RPG/video game/movie-related novels like the plague, although I confess to being intrigued by the recent run of Delta Green story collections…

*Not included are Andre Norton’s Quag Keep (the “first D&D novel”) or contemporary fantasy works based on the author’s D&D campaigns/characters, such as Feist’s Riftwar series.

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