cover image Darkwar: Doomstalker, Warlock, Ceremony

Darkwar: Doomstalker, Warlock, Ceremony

Glen Cook, . . Night Shade, $35 (300pp) ISBN 978-1-59780-153-9

Before turning to gritty fantasy-world tales like the Black Company series, Cook wrote some high-quality space opera, as this omnibus reprint shows. In a full-blown and very 1980s space fantasy trilogy, the Silth, wolflike alien witches, use telepathy and enslaved otherworldly beings to explore the Milky Way. Marika, a young Meth whose planet has been targeted by the Silth, discovers that she has remarkable psychic talents. Despite her personal disinterest in power, she finds herself increasingly forced to ruthlessly pursue it, both to protect herself and to force social change on the other Meth in hopes of surviving an impending ice age, vast social upheaval and the appearance of the powerful and expansionist beings known as humans. This is an effectively told if minor tragedy, and an interesting example of Cook's early work. (Dec.)