The Thorn Forests, also called the Thornwoods or the Forest of Thorns, were an enormous tangle of thorns. It was the region of the Deepwoods bordered in the east by the Deepwoods proper and in the west by the Nightwoods. The tangle stood as tall as trees, and each individual tendril was enormous and covered with razor-sharp thorns that could easily pierce flesh. Together the tendrils could tear things to pieces, and they did so to the vast majority of creatures that attempted to travel through the Thorn Forests. Also, the winds above the Thorn Forests were so turbulent that it was impossible for sky ships, skycraft, or phraxships to pass over them.
Role in history
In the First and Second Ages of Flight
In the First and Second Ages of Flight the Thorn Forests were a dangerous barrier separating the Deepwoods from the Nightwoods. Many waifs trying to escape the Nightwoods died in the attempt due to the Thorn Forests, and the turbulent winds stopped the sky pirates from reaching Riverrise in their sky ships despite their hard-fought attempts to do so. Reaching Riverrise by land from the Deepwoods was also extremely difficult because of the Thorn Forests, so difficult that by the time of the Twig Trilogy most people though that Riverrise was a mere myth.
In the Third Age of Flight
In the Third Age of Flight the settlement of Thorn Harbour was constructed on the border between the Deepwoods and the Thorn Forests and the Waif Trail (which began at Thorn Harbour) was established through the Thorn Forests. The Waif Trail allowed safe and relatively easy travel through the Thorn Woods.
Role in the Edge Chronicles
In the Twig Trilogy
Between the Twig Trilogy and the Rook Trilogy
After the events of Midnight Over Sanctaphrax, Twig needed to retrieve his crewmembers, Maugin, Goom, and Woodfish, whom he had left at Riverrise. However, the difficulty of crossing the Thorn Woods by air or land, among other things, prevented him from doing so. Eventually he was forced to admit defeat and go live among the banderbears.
In The Immortals Nate traveled through the Thorn Forests via the Waif Trail to Riverrise so that he could save Eudoxia Prade, who had a leadwood bullet lodged behind her ear from the Battle of the Midwood Marshes.