But once I got a grasp (incomplete, but enough to allow me to feel comfortable) of the world in which the story takes place, I quite enjoyed this novella that combines fantasy and a murder mystery. Who murdered the temple sorceress, why, and what happened to her demon?
Penric's Fox is set in an interesting world with some intriguing characters.
read in Dec; review scheduled for Feb. 19
Fantasy. Feb. 28, 2018. Print length: 113 pages.
Lake Silence by Anne Bishop is the 6th in the Others series. Different location, different characters, but with connections to the characters in earlier books and set in the same world. I was thrilled to find that the world of the Others was not finished with the Lakeside Courtyard.
However, Lake Silence is only vaguely attached to the characters I loved in the previous books. New story, new characters, same world with many of the same problems. If you haven't read the other books, I wouldn't begin with this one as Bishop makes little background of the world available.
Nevertheless, as a committed fan of the series, I was delighted to immerse myself in the little village in terra indigine controlled territory. Lake Silence is not as dark (although there is a great deal of violence) and has more humorous incidents than in the previous books.
From the description: Set in the country of Thaisia, a present-day alternate North America, the strange and beautiful world of The Others is one where humans live alongside shapeshifters, vampires and a host of beings even more deadly known as the terra indigene. The first five books of The Others have focused on the inhabitants of the Lakeside Courtyard — a private terra indigene communitywhose residents are tasked with keeping watch over the humans in the city.
Bishop’s new novel takes readers to a human village nestled in the terra indigene-controlled Finger Lakes region of Northeast Thaisia. It stars divorcee Victoria “Vicki” DeVine, owner of The Jumble — a small, self-sufficient community located on the shore of Lake Silence. Vicki and the town’s residents soon find themselves caught up in a chilling mystery, after a series of vicious murders rock the small community.
I loved Vicky and her supporters, including Officer Wayne Grimshaw, the highway patrol officer sent to investigate the first murder; Julian Farrow, the owner of the local bookstore, whose back story is briefly covered; Ineke Xavier, who runs the local boardinghouse; and various Others, including Ilya Sanguinati and Agatha Crowgard. There are many new characters introduced, and I expect they will all continue to have their characters deepen and expand in succeeding books.
Is the book as good as the first five in the series? It diverges from the the Lakeside Courtyard and does not have the personal "histories" that the first books have established. The Lake Silence community is just getting started, but I thoroughly enjoyed meeting all of the new folks and getting a feel for the area (humans, terra indigine, Elementals) that develop a different branch of the world of the Others.
read in January; review scheduled for Feb. 19
Fantasy/Alternate Reality. March 6, 2018. Print length: 416 pages.