Well now, in one week I am giving a mediocre review to one Dream Pod 9 product (The Tribe 8 Companion), and a negative one to another. Does this mean I'm no longer a raving fan boy? Probably not, but I shall endeavor to maintain a calm public facade anyway.
The Book of Legends was a book with a very good concept, but that ended up being undercut by some mistakes in design and a few shortcuts that were taken by the people at the Pod. It is a book that was supposed to be about the stories told in Tribal and Fallen society, and about the role they play in their culture and in the game.
Unfortunately the way that the book was set up didn't really support this. The vast majority of the book is given over to one man's attempt to find stories that had been lost. To do so he went on a spirit quest to find the stories that others could not. The problem is that the stories that he finds are ones that are lost to everyone else - so they won't exactly be stories that your characters are going to tell or be told IC. Also the book focuses more on the spirit quest than on the actual telling of tales. While this is nice for giving an idea of running spirit quests it is completely unhelpful for someone who was looking for an example of storytelling in a tribal society.
The other problem was the stories that were found. The majority of them were already available in other forms on the Dream Pod 9 web page for free. As a net junkie and Tribe 8 freak I had already plundered these stories for my own campaign, which left this book with very little of use to me.
All the disappointments aside though, I still must give credit where it is due. The writing was crisp, clear, and very evocative of the correct moods. The stories were well woven together to give a plot of epic proportions, and the notes on turning it into an adventure were well thought out. All in all it was not bad for an adventure book, which isn't saying much.
Though the book was well written and the ideas behind it were solid I cannot recommend this book, a mere 60 pages, as being worth it's price. If you are a die hard Tribe 8 fan go ahead and pick it up, but otherwise just go to the web site to get the stories.