Though I took a break from posting earlier this year, I didn’t take a break from reading. I thought I’d read three, maybe four books in that time. But, I surprised myself. I have sixteen unreviewed books setting next to me. Sixteen! Sure, half of them are graphic novels, but they still count. Let’s see what’s here.
Book Backlog: Fiction
- The Hidden Land by Pamela Dean
- The Hidden Land continues the story begun in The Secret Country. Every summer, two sets of siblings share an intricate game of make-believe, which they call The Secret. Suddenly, they discover that The Secret is real, and is not exactly as they imagined. The children find themselves trapped in the Secret Country. In The Hidden Land, the adventure continues several months later, with the children still masquerading as their Secret Country counterparts. An assassination throws the kingdom into turmoil, and one of the children inherits the throne.
I read this book mainly to satisfy my curiosity as to whatever happened with The Secret Country, which I’d read many years previously. The Secret Country has its own internal logic, and if a reader can accept that, it’s a pleasant read.
- The Whim of the Dragon by Pamela Dean
- The Whim of the Dragon concludes the tale of the Secret Country. In returning home, the children unknowingly set in motion the destruction of the Secret Country. Now revealed as impostors, can the children save the world?
This book reveals many of the secrets of the Secret Country, but even identifying them would take far too much explanation. It was a satisfying conclusion to the trilogy.
- Heroic Fantasy by Page and Reinhardt
- An anthology of 1970′s sword-and-sorcery, Heroic Fantasy manages to serve up some winners and some snoozers. Low Fantasy isn’t exactly my favorite genre, but it’s good to try reading something different now and then.
Perhaps my favorite story of the bunch was “The Hero Who Retuned.” A ferryman, who provides passage across a river to doomed adventurers, suddenly finds himself one of them.
- Science Fiction: The Best of 2004, by Haber and Strahan
- This book was obviously a science-fiction anthology. Some of the stories were excellent, and some I vaguely recall reading in another anthology I have, I’m curious to look up some of the included authors to see if they’ve published anything since then.
That pretty much covers the fiction section. Next time, I’ll cover the non-fiction.