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2 novels available for review (pre-pub)

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  • Joan.Marie.Verba@sff.net
    Some of you may know that I run a small press (not open for submissions at the moment, by the way). I m offering 2 books for anyone who would write a Mythprint
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 27, 2011
      Some of you may know that I run a small press (not open for submissions at the
      moment, by the way). I'm offering 2 books for anyone who would write a
      Mythprint review (you can take one or the other - or both, if you wish).
      They're not published yet, but I expect one to be in print by the end of
      September and the other to be in print by the end of October. If you wish to
      review them, I'll email a pdf file of the book now, and mail you a
      complimentary physical book when it comes out. (Covers by Alicia Austin.)

      The books are:

      Bradamant's Quest by Ruth Berman
      (Ruth is a founding member of the Rivendell Discussion Group)

      It sounded like such a straightforward quest when Oberon proposed it -- just
      gather up the magical talismans the fairies had given her family and give them
      back, now that King Charlemagne's war with Spain was over. But when Bradamant
      took on the quest, she didn't know that her brother would think it was
      trafficing with devils. Her cousins the magicians didn't want to give up their
      carefully indexed books of magic (much less the hippogriff -- a useful steed
      and a loyal companion). Her sister-in-law was willing to give up the spear of
      Galafrone, but not until she'd finished using it. And her cousin Roland seemed
      to be haunting his grave, where his magically enduring sword was buried with
      him, and dead set against being disturbed. What's a warrior to do when valor
      alone is not enough for her to complete a quest?

      (By the way, 2 of the chapters of this book have been previously published as
      short stories: "The Dragon's Skin" was in _Dragon Fantastic_, ed. Rosalind M. &
      Martin H. Greenberg, NY: DAW Books, 1992. "The Buried Sword" was in _Asimov's
      Science Fiction_, June 2004.)

      Secret Murder by Ellen Kuhfeld

      �There is one problem. And here he comes, at this very moment.�

      Yes, Thorolf Pike was trouble. Declared an outlaw and exiled from his home, he
      had come from Surtsheim, where his fellow Norsemen lived, to Northlanding,
      where English settlers lived. Now he was dead, by an unknown hand. Who killed
      him? And, should the murderer be judged by English law, or by Norse law, for
      the crime of secret murder?

      (from the back cover)
      I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It�s a murder mystery set in an outpost of
      medieval Europe, which just happens to be in Minnesota. (In the novel�s world,
      Europeans settled in North America long before 1492 and now trade through the
      Great Lakes and along the Mississippi, both with Native Americans and other
      settlers.) An overbearing Viking is murdered at a trade fair, where
      Scandinavian merchants from Northern Minnesota meet to trade with English and
      French merchants from farther south. The chief suspect is an old enemy of the
      Viking, a tough as nails and likable merchant named Ragnar Forkbeard. The
      bailiff for the local baron is trying to solve the crime, before the fair
      breaks up and the killer can get away. Ragnar is trying to solve the crime,
      before he is arrested for it. In the course of the two investigations, we are
      introduced to medieval trading, religion, courtship, friendship, poetry and
      ethics. I could not find a false note anywhere. Kuhfeld�s Vikings ring true.
      LIke the saga heroes, they are tough, honorable, violent and funny. His English
      characters are equally interesting and plausible. I enjoyed the midwestern
      landscape and trying to identify the locations I know now. (Milltown by the
      Great Falls has to be Minneapolis by St. Anthony Falls. Lakesend has to be
      Duluth.) The mystery kept me guessing. Its solution was satisfactory. There are
      two Viking funerals, one of them outstanding, and a quiet romance. What else
      can a reasonable person ask for?

      I recommend the book to anyone who is interested in Vikings, medieval Europe or
      a good, old fashioned, Minnesota murder mystery.

      --Eleanor Arnason, author of A Woman of the Iron People, winner of the James
      Tiptree Jr. Award and Mythopoeic Society Award; and Ring of Swords, winner of
      the Minnesota Book Award.

      Again, if you wish to review either of these, please contact me offlist at:

      Thanks for your consideration,
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