Tough Travelling hosted by Fantasy Review Barn.

Each Thursday, inspired by ‘The Tough Guide to Fantasyland’ we have in hand, we shall tour the mystical countryside looking for adventure and fun (and tropes) from all over fantasy.

This week’s topic is NEW BEGINNINGS

A new leaf, a new life, a complete change of pace for a character in Fantasyland is how most stories start. Bad people get a second chance, farm kids leave the farm, or a soldier gets a new post. From there adventure awaits!

New Beginnings are probably the most popular story for middle-aged protagonists; in fact, I could’ve reposted almost all of my middle-aged hero post. But other characters have gotten New Beginnings, too.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer at the start of the series: while Buffy is still in school when she and her mom move to Sunnydale, her mom Joyce says that the move is a new beginning for both: for Joyce after a divorce and for Buffy after she burned down her previous school’s gym. It’s of course also the start of Buffy’s life as a Slayer.

Xena the Warrior Princess: Xena used to be an evil warlord but at the start of her series she starts her life as a force for good.

Aeryn Sun from Farscape: the start of the series can be seen as a new beginning for every one of the regular cast; Crichton starts a life away from Earth and most of the rest have been in jail for a long time. However, Aeryn’s life changes also emotionally. She was born as a Peacekeeper, a warrior whose culture denies all gentler emotions. They can’t have spouses or form families. Aboard Moya, Aeryn explores a whole new way of living.

Ista in “Paladin of Souls” by Lois McMaster Bujold: Ista a middle-aged woman, a widow with a grown child and has spent many years confined, because people thought that she’s insane.

Cazaril in “the Curse of Chalion” Lois McMaster Bujold: At the start of the story, Caz is a very humble former galley slave who gets a new beginning.

October Day in “Rosemary and Rue” by Seanan McGuire: Toby has spent the last fourteen years as a fish because of a malicious spell. Because of it, she has lost her husband and child. However, because of the events in the first book, she’s drawn back into the San Francisco’s faery society.

Will Laurence in “Temeraire” by Naomi Novik: Poor Laurence doesn’t know his life is turned upside down when he finds a dragon egg and bonds with the dragon which hatched from it. He goes from a respected ship’s captain to the lowly captain of a newly hatched dragon of unknown race.

Moist from Lipwig in “Going Postal” by Terry Pratchett: Moist is a small-time conman waiting to be hanged when the Patrician gives his a second chance – as Ankh-Morpork Postmaster General.

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