Pardon me if I start slacking on posts again, but things are going crazy around here again.
Magic Kingdom of Landover, book four.
Everything should have
been quiet and pleasant for Ben Holiday, the former Chicago lawyer who
became sovereign of the Magic Kingdom of Landover. But it wasn't.
Kew, conjurer, confidence-man, and trickster, had returned to Landover
from Ben's own world. Alas, Horris had not returned of his own
volition--he had been sent by the Gorse, a sorcerer of great evil, whom
Horris had unwittingly freed from the magic Tangle Box, where it had
long ago been imprisoned by the fairy folk. Now it had returned to
enslave those who had once dared condemn it. But first, it would rid
Landover of all who could stand in its way...
Soon Ben found himself
imprisoned within the gloom of the Tangle Box, lost in its mists and its
labyrinthine ways. The only one who could free Ben from the Tangle Box
was the lady Willow. But she had disappeared, was gone from Landover on a
mysterious mission of her own....
MY RATING: 3 STARS
I'm glad Terry Brooks took that time from the series before coming back to it, because this one feels much better than Wizard At Large.
There's more depth of character and more care in the whole kit and
kaboodle, and thank God he's broken away from his usual patterns!
Kew, an exile returned to Landover through the magic of an evil being
called the Gorse, manages to trap Ben Holiday, along with Strabo and
Nightshade (will that old witch EVER clear out of here?!) in the
mysterious Tangle Box, a prison of sorts filled with fairy mists where
imagination is reality and your worst fears come to life. Willow can't
help him, as she's off on a mission to prepare for the fairy birth of
her and Ben's child. And Questor Thews and Abernathy can't help either,
as they've got their hands full trying to keep Landover from falling
apart in the King's absence. There's quite a bit going on, but each plot
line remains distinct while still keeping in time with the others.
is once again my favorite character, but I'm also growing fonder of
Strabo. Stripped of his identity (as everyone is in the Tangle Box), we
get to understand him more. And I was also happy to see Edgewood Dirk,
the prism cat, make an appearance again, though he wasn't around long
enough, in my opinion. What pleased me most with this one was that even
though Ben lost himself--yet again--he had companions for the ride that
added new complications and food for thought as I watched them interact
with each other. And three cheers for someone other than the goshdarned
Paladin saving the day!
The only thing that annoyed me was the
way Willow's story was handled. For being such an important event, she
felt like an afterthought between everything else, and in the end it
felt too anticlimactic for me. Oh well, can't have everything.
Your humble book nerd,