Over the next few days, I will try to catch up on reviews for all the books I read while recovering from whiplash. I am actually reading book #46 right now.
American author John Ringo is far better known for his military fiction and political thrillers than this quirky paperback that appeared in 2006. The cover artwork of a woman in jeans with a Japanese katana (sword) fighting some scaly beast was intriguing enough to get me to flip it over at the bookstore. The back copy about this homemaker drawn into the supernatural was clever enough to make me buy it and the ensuing tales of mayhem, magic, wry humour and Faith ensured it a permanent place on my basement bookshelves.
Princess of Wands is actually three books in one. Book One, The Almadu Sanction, explains how a seemingly normal Soccer Mom, Barbara Everette, decides to take a break from her family for a weekend to restore her sanity and discovers that she is actually a Believer who can help battle against the evil that is lurking in the Bayous beyond New Orleans. Book Two, The Necromancy Option, is Barbara’s first team mission to root out the evil that lurks at a Sci-FI/Fantasy convention (anyone who has ever been to a Con will find themselves laughing out loud on several occasions) and Book Three, Broken Sabbath, is a short but satisfying romp into how this Christian warrior manages to protect her family without truly revealing what she has been up to on the side.
Reading Misfit and the Chronicles of Nick books reminded me that I owned this novel, so I dug it out for another read. The quirky humour, spine-tingling action and nonjudgmental way that the main character professes her faith combine into a blend of mystery, fantasy, action and religious tolerance that I found as captivating on the second reading as I did on the first. While browsing the web to write this review, I was delighted to discover that a sequel, The Queen of Wands, is due to be released this summer! Not only will I be able to include it in my CBRIV challenge this year, I will also be able to add it to my library.
For those of you who would like to read this tale for FREE, it is available in a variety of formats from Baen Books on their site through this link. I noticed that the cover artwork has been modified from the version of Barbara that appears on my paperback copy… but hopefully the stories remain the same. Enjoy!
Paperback format, 408 pages, published in 2006 by Baen Books