by Glenda Larke
Category: Fiction / Fantasy
0 pages; ISBN: 0441012779
Rating: 10/10 (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Harriet Klausner
Ace, April 2005, $6.99, 336 pp.
The Isles of Glory consists of eleven island nations each a country with its own laws and rulers. It is an inbred place because it is forbidden for one islander to marry a person from another island. Blaze Halfbreed is the product of parents of two different islands and was abandoned as a child when it was obvious she was not a purebred. She is not a citizen and cannot gain citizenry from most of the isles but Blaze has Awareness, the ability to see and sense dunmagic (evil sorcery) and sylv magic (good magic).
This ability makes her useful to the Keepers who rule the Keeper Isles by protecting the weaker islands from being assaulted by the more powerful islanders. Blaze works for the Keepers and in five years if she performs adequately she will be made a citizen of the Keepers Isles. She is on the lawless island, Gorthan Spit, looking for a Cirkasian who ran away from home rather then marry the Bastionlord of Breth who prefers his sex partners to be very young boys. She meets Flane, a slyv practitioner who comes to the attention of a very powerful user of Dunmagic. He tries to turn her into a dun magician but Blaze finds a way to save her. The two women form a bond of friendship so that when one is in trouble, the other will help get her out of it. Blaze learns that there are more important things tthan citizenships like friendships and ridding the Isles of Glory of Mordred the most powerful Dinmagican of all.
Book one of the Isles of Glory is one of the best fantasy novels imported from Australia. Glenda Larke has written a fantastic fantasy full of action adventure and romance so that readers of other genres will enjoy THE AWARE. Blaze is a very complicated character who wants to be selfish but always manages to do the right thing even though it costs her the chance to be a citizen. It will be very hard to wait for the next book to be published as the audience will want to read more of Blaze’s fantastic adventures.
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