Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Review: mini-reviews of The Goddess of Buttercups and Daisies and The Shadow of the Wolf.

"It's the Peloponnesian War and playwright Aristophanes is trying to put on a comedy to convince Athenian citizens to vote against more war with Sparta, but everything is going wrong.  When enemies of peace unleash a spirit of foolishness and bad decisions within Athens, the goddess Athena sends an Amazon warrior and a nymph to save the peace process." 

This was a good, short little historical fantasy comedy.  The plot is interesting, though those more familiar with the Peloponnesian War and the historical characters may or may not get much out of it.  This was my first book by Millar and while his sense of humor was fine, I didn't exactly laugh out loud at anything.  Still, I'll probably try something else by him in the future.

Rating: 7/10.

"This a very different Robin Hood.  Robin Loxley is seven years old when his parents disappear without a trace.  Years later the great love of his life, Marian, is also taken from him.  This leads him onto a very dark path deep into the heart of Sherwood Forest." 

This was marketed as Young Adult, but like Abercrombie's Shattered Seas books there's very little of the genre in the writing aside from the protagonists ages and a simpler, more straight-forward story.  There is a werewolf, but it's a more elemental, supernatural thing.  This angle makes for a very different take on the Robin Hood legend and the characters are all very different as well.  That's actually where the book partially fails.  The story of Robin Hood is very well known so there is no need to provide a lot of background, but the supernatural parts are hardly explained at all, even after 470 pages.  It doesn't quite mesh and the last section of the book, where it finally begins to resemble the story we all know, feels rushed compared to the rest of the book.  The first of a trilogy and I may or may not pick up the next book.

Rating: 7.5/10. 

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