The Wicked

Douglas Nicholas. Atria, $15 trade paper (368p) ISBN 978-1-4516-6024-1
A dark threat shadows medieval North England in Nicholas’s eerie sequel to Something Red. Known for handling the supernatural, Irish Queen Maeve, called Molly, agrees to aid Norman lord Sir Odinell in investigating the mysterious deaths plaguing his lands. Odinell blames Sir Tarquin, a newcomer to a local stronghold, who boasts an evil manner and the uncanny ability to hypnotize Odinell’s knights. Molly gathers her team—her teen granddaughter, Nemain; her lover, shapeshifter Jack Brown; and Nemain’s betrothed, the squire Hob—but she still ends up doing most of the work herself, and narrator Hob often fails to grasp or convey the nuances of Molly’s actions. There is never a mystery about the villain, only about how Molly and company will triumph in the end. Nicholas’s strength lies in the historical setting and his use of language; the dialects are sometimes challenging to decipher, but they give the dialogue a pleasant solidity, and his prose mimics the flow and structure of speech. Fantasy readers interested in the medieval period will be drawn into Nicholas’s detailed world. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 11/11/2013
Release date: 03/25/2014
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Open Ebook - 368 pages - 978-1-4516-6026-5
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