Wednesday, July 27, 2005

New books I look forward to reading

This September 1 sees the publication of the third book in a series of four by Juliet E McKenna, Western Shore. Set in the Aldabreshin Archipelego, it continues the story of warlord Daish Kheda's uneasy alliance with the barbarian Northern wizards of the unbroken lands. In the last novel, Northern Storm, Kheda and the disreputable mage Dev, overcame a dragon created from elemental magic, but the threat to the Chazen islands, over which Kheda rules, remains. In the new novel, Kheda decides to join forces with the Northern wizards again in the hope of removing the dragon threat for good. He also wants to find purification from the taint of magic that his alliance with Dev, and others of his kind, has left. This series began with Southern Fire, which itself followed on from the second book (The Swordsman's Oath) of McKenna's other series, The Tales of Einarinn. I can heartily recommend both series, and in fact I wrote a paper on McKenna's The Tales of Einarinn series earlier this year.

The other book to which I'm looking forward won't actually be out until next May (2006) in the UK. Lynn Flewelling's The Oracle's Queen is the final book in the Tamir Triad. This series began with The Bone Doll's Twin, in which the powerful wizard Iya attempted to restore the line of ruling Queens to Skala. This required disguising the new-born twin daughter of the King's sister, Ariani, as a boy, and the magically-contrived still-birth of the twin son. The story continues in Hidden Warrior in which Skala is at war with its old enemy, Plenimar, whilst plague stalks across the land, and Prince Tobin discovers that she is a girl, not a boy, as she had appeared to be until the onset of puberty began to unravel the magics that had kept her true nature hidden.

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