Read Recently — June 2005

Raven’s Shadow by Patricia Briggs

Tieragan Baker is making his way home from the War (now over) with a warhorse and sword, when he is distracted by a mob in the village he stops off in for the night, burning a Traveller to death and trying to sell said Traveller’s sister to a trader, who seems to have plans for her. He rescues the girl, Seraph, and takes her to his home as a step on the way to finding her people for her. Through circumstances a little complicated to relate here, having to do with the prejudices of Tier’s family and of his home village, they end up married and farming just outside town. 20 years later, they have a nice farm and three gifted (or rather, Gifted) children. There are still problems with the family (especially Tier’s sister, who hates Seraph), but things seem to be going well, despite the presence of old, dark magic not far from town, magic that the Travellers were created to deal with.

Then one day Tier doesn’t come home from a hunting trip, and remains are found leaving reason to believe that he is dead. Plus, the new priest in the village is altering the religion based on Traveller beliefs . . . .

This one started off bad for me, then got good by the end. Maybe it’s the prejudice thing. In the end, this rather reminds me of some of Tanya Huff’s work, and that’s high praise from me.

Recommended.


A Hat Full of Sky: A story of Discworld by Terry Pratchett

I’m kinda strange, I guess. I was looking for the Pratchett books in the Pratchett section of the adult SF section, just because that’s where all the Pratchett books were. It would never have occurred to me to look in the children’s section (ironically, I had been in the children’s section that same day, looking for a copy of Howl’s Moving Castle, which of course wasn’t there). How long was this book available before I found it, I wonder?

A sequel to Wee Free Men, this continues the story of Tiffany Aching, a young but potentially powerful witch, and good friend to the Nac Mac Feegle, the aforementioned Wee Free Men (aka Pictsies). This time, Tiffany’s off to be be trained in Witchcraft by a senior witch elsewhere in the discworld. It’s the first time she’s left home, and she’s a little intimidated. Also, she has developed a magical bad habbit, and something is lurking to take advantage of it . . .

What more can I say? If you like Pratchett, you’ll like this. If you don’t, you won’t. I did.

Recommended.

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