There are 12 races in Eternal Darkness and they all have different bonuses and drawbacks. First there are small, medium, and large races. Medium races are the easiest to gear up since most equipment fits them while small and large races have to look for equipment that is the right size for them. However, gnomes and pixies (small races) will learn most spells the fastest, pixies even start with color spray mastered. Dwarves and the Giant races make very good warriors. It is usually a very bad idea to start as a Giant for your first choice since you will get the primitive flag, severely limiting what weapons you can use... forever.
Make sure you check the Spheres page, it will help you pick a race that is good at what your class does