Ombria in Shadow

ALPHABET OF THORN

Patricia A. McKillip, Author . Ace $22.95 (320p) ISBN 978-0-441-01130-8

Those who have bemoaned the death of the true fairy tale will be delighted by this charming foray from World Fantasy Award–winner McKillip (Ombria in Shadow ). She skillfully weaves together two eras and two sets of believable characters to create a single spellbinding story that brilliantly modernizes a beautiful old formula: the clever orphaned foundling has no desire to seek out her parents nor ambition for high office; the powerful wizard is a disguised woman deeply in love with the conquering king, who treats his subjects kindly; the sullen young queen catapulted to her throne by her father's unexpected death turns out to have both skill and humor in unexpected places; the haughty witch finds herself honestly baffled by turns of events that she never predicted. Moreover, where another author might have played up slapstick clumsiness for cheap laughs, McKillip evokes compassion for the characters' frustrations as they take their befuddled steps toward their predestined meeting. Best of all, the strong female leads neither rail against nor submit to patriarchy. In this magical world blissfully free of bias, people are simply themselves, equally intelligent and witty and thoroughly capable while prone to the occasional error, in a manner that transcends feminism and becomes a celebration of essential humanity. The brisk sweep to the slightly abrupt conclusion leaves the reader longing for more. (Feb. 3 )

Forecast: The small trim size and the exquisite, gentle jacket art that evokes classic fairy tale volumes will grab the attention of YA readers.

Reviewed on: 01/19/2004
Release date: 02/01/2004
Show other formats
FORMATS
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-0-441-01243-5
Prebound-Sewn - 978-1-4176-8935-4
Open Ebook - 978-0-7865-5480-5
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 978-0-7865-5481-2
Open Ebook - 304 pages - 978-1-101-20828-1
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.