Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Flight of the Sorceress

I have been fortunate enough to wander across a really great book! I don't remember exactly how I heard about "The Flight of the Sorceress" but what caught my eye was the setting (410AD, British Isles).
As some of you know, I have an ongoing magnum opus that I hope will one day be a grand retelling of the Arthurian Legend, but using aspects that are familiar to modern fantasy readers (Dragons, Dwarves, Fireballs).
My Arthurian setting is ~500 AD so I was very interested in Barry Willdorf's historical ficiton novel set in a similar time frame, especially when I read that it featured some of the disagreements between Imperial Rome, Christianity, Celts, Jews and other social issues of the day (and arguably of today as well)
so, I picked up the novel and after finishing up "Bitter Seeds" recently (Great book!!), I dove into "The Flight of the Sorceress".
It is far, far better than I hade even expected. I had not read anything of Mr. Willdorf's before so I did not know what to expect. Here is what I got.
  • The historical research is fantastic! And the settings just "breathe" they are so real. And you get to see more than just the British Isles (trying to avoid any spoilers).
  • The characters are so well developed and my heart bleeds for them during their travails.
  • the heroines are plucky, to say the least, but in extremely admirable ways that never cross the line into annoying.
Bottom Line:
The book has been educational for me, as a student of the period, but even more than that, it is a really exciting and engaging book and one that I highly recommend!

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