Barbara (amazon customer)
Sep 1, 2017, 06:12
Brave New Worlds
Having read Wild Sorceress, I was impressed with the world building the Carters did, right down to the weapons used, the battle techniques, the court proceedings, etc. I can only imagine the hours of research that went into this work. Although we don’t know the year the story took place, my sense is that it happened many years ago in a setting similar to that of Tolkien’s Middle Earth. The inhabitants are human but possess extraordinary powers, and given the thorough explanation of details and spells by protag Aetria, I found myself suspending disbelief.
My gut reaction was admiration for the strength in Aetria’s character. The story begins with a lot of cards stacked against her. She has to prove herself to Commander Pleates (aka “Crusher”) and he knows how to push all her buttons. I think most of us can relate to her insecurity when we face a difficult teacher or boss. Her untamed power continues to get her into hot water with her commander and other authorities. Unlike most sorcerers, she’s survived not one but several grid burnouts as well as numerous attempts on her life. The story starts out slow because the Carters have to lay out their new world and the techniques for spell casting and magic. But the pace picks up fast and becomes a page-turner. It left me wanting to read more.
I was impressed by the technique of foreshadowing the Carters used. For example, when Pleates delivered his reprimands, the Carters made it a point of describing the way his Adam’s apple moves. The description of his throat becomes significant later in the story. I won’t tell you why, but you can find out by reading the book. Wild Sorceress will make a great addition to your library.
Stephen Symons, author and Amazon customer
Sep 1, 2017, 06:11
A Whole New World
ByAmazon Customeron August 24, 2016
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
It has been said that writers do not create books, they create new worlds. That may or may not be the case, but without doubt that is what the Carters have done in this case. Not only that, they have created a world that is uncommon even in fantasy; one that has no connection to our everyday world. Most of the classic creations – Tolkein’s Middle-Earth, Lewis’ Narnia, Bradley’s Darkover, Burroughs’ Barsoom – are all connected with Earth here-and-now. Middle-Earth is an ancient, forgotten here-and-now where elves and goblins walk abroad, Darkover was colonised by people from ancient here-and-now and contact lost. To get to Barsoom, all you have to do is go to a cave in here-and-now Arizona, stretch forth your hands to the red eye of the God of War and you are there. Narnia is just inside the wardrobe.
Exactly where the nations of Delmathia and Hermania, the two sides in a bitter war, might really be is never stated, nor is there any apparent connection to the here and now. The characters, such as Aetria and Coleni, Trelana and Corerilla, are human [or at least appear to be], they ride horses and they eat rabbits and chickens. But there is no indication of where or when their world might exist.
It is without doubt a well and cleverly thought-out world and described in fine detail. The minutiae of the history, the geography and the socio-political cultural matrix of this society is presented fully. At first I thought the attention to detail to be somewhat over-done, but on further reading I realised; no, in order to understand what is going on, you do need all this information. We are given no preliminary picture. We are plunged straight into a complex situation and have to make sense of it quickly, along with sorting out a host of unfamiliar personal names. To enjoy the tale to its fullest, the reader needs to pay close attention from the beginning.
The course of the war that is the background to the plot is brilliantly described, and the combination of sorcerous and lay soldiery most original. Battlefield tactics and the positioning of formations large and small are laid out clearly and logically, as they would be did such forces really exist, and it is tempting to think that if we were able to cast spells, this is how it would really be. The use of magic in war is not a new idea, of course, but these sorcerers are not your normal individualistic eccentric like Gandalf the Grey; spells are used as weapons, and new magical weaponry can be invented, a fascinating and novel suggestion.
The story takes a little time to pick up speed, but once it is moving, the twists and surprises just keep coming. To the very end the reader is kept wondering; which way next? What will pop out of the woodwork at the next turn of the page? Which, of course, keeps you turning the page, and the ending ties everything up very well. But, wait! What is the real position of Aetria’s father. What is the real nature of her dragon? Is it really just a childhood dream – or something else? And what is this experiment, the one upon the success of which hangs the fate of the world? I shall look forward to finding out.
This is definitely an exceptional yarn. Five stars, no arguments there.