Mages and wizards having wiped out each other a century ago, Empress Ouriana now rules unpleasantly as the Divine Incarnation of the Devouring Moon. But somewhere there's a princess who has a chance to overthrow her. With a reading group guide. Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
In Howard's gripping second volume in her Rune of Unmaking high fantasy series (after The Hidden Stars), Ouri na, the queen of Pha?rax, seeks an heir. Since Ouri na has lost one son and does not trust a second, she sends her high wizard north in search of her niece, a princess who's living as a healer under the name Winloki. Some of the northerners have other plans for Winloki, particularly the wizard Sinderian and her father, Faolein (in the form of an owl). Sinderian and Faolein arrive too late to forestall the high wizard, but set off after him and Winloki on a long and breathless chase by land and by sea. On the way, daughter and father encounter caverns of the dead, kingdoms of dwarves and vicious manticores. Swift pacing, well-crafted characters and vivid battle scenes lift this well above the average Tolkien-inspired fantasy. (Dec.) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.