marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,

Alphabet of Thorn

Alphabet of Thorn by Patricia McKillip

The new queen is about to be crowned, but for Nepenthe, life goes on as it did, translating strange alphabets into modern language.  When Bourne, one mage of the Floating School, gives her a book in an alphabet of thorn, she grows obsessed with it, and the ancient tales it tells of Axis and Kane, and the conquests won by Axis with Kane's magic.

Meanwhile, the old mage Vevey tries to make something of the queen, whose nobles might tear apart her realm with their ambitions.  And the Dreaming King woke enough to warn of a terrible danger facing the realm:  thorns.  And Queen Tessera goes walking in the woods about the Floating School. . .

There is also a past storyline, which I often find hard to cope with, but in this novel, the plotlines are neatly woven enough to keep past and present straight, even as we get an addition of coins, invisibility, a hunt in the woods, realms that Axis could not have conquered because they were after his time, accusations of treason, and names.
Tags: fiction reviews: high fantasy, patricia a. mckillip

  • ages of history

    So, once upon a time, there were evil wizards making everyone miserable. Some of the more minor wizards banded together and took over and made…

  • down the years

    Ah, the bildungsroman! I know the years ahead. I know many events that will happen in them. I even know that some will happen before others! It's…

  • there will be math

    Typing innocently along and abruptly realizing: there will be math. Given that our heroine is a member of a class of five students -- admittedly,…

  • Post a new comment


    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded