Tue 17 Jun 2008
A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, there was an eleven-year-old named Stephanie who had just read Alanna: the First Adventure by Tamora Pierce, and was looking for other children’s fantasy. Unfortunately, the year was 1993 (or 4) and Harry Potter hadn’t hit yet. Publishers were loath to publish fantasy for children. Of course, she had the classics, but she wanted more. Then she found a couple books that had been published recently, by a woman named Monica Furlong: Juniper and Wise Child. She read those a few times and enjoyed them quite a bit. Fifteen (or fourteen) years later, she found out that they were books 1 and 2 of a trilogy, and the third one had been published in 2004, just after the author passed away. The realization that she was old enough for fourteen or fifteen years to pass in between reading books frightened her a bit, but she read Colman, the conclusion of the trilogy, and decided to review it.
Juniper is a doran, a witch; she’s also the daughter of King Mark of Cornwall. Wise Child is her apprentice. Colman is a friend of Wise Child’s; Finbar is Wise Child’s father, and Cormac is a leper who Juniper healed. Those are the main players in the story so far. A very bad woman took over Cornwall and killed the king and queen; Juniper (Ninnoc)’s brother is still alive, and the group wants to help him take the country back. Unfortunately, they have very little idea of where to start, since so many things are being controlled by the bad woman and her knight-husband. What do they do? Magic, of course. (more…)