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July Books 18) Harpist in the Wind

18) Harpist in the Wind, by Patricia A. McKillip

Bought this a while back because it was rated (by some people) ahead of Arthur C Clarke’s The Fountains of Paradise, which beat it for the 1980 Hugo Award; it also won the Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel.

I started off rather enjoying the travails of the protagonist, who has been endowed with super-powers and must save the continent, while at the same time keeping his relationship with his girlfriend on track. Unfortunately I lost patience with it about half way through; it’s the third book of a trilogy, and doesn’t really stand on its own (too much back-story needing to be explained); also I wasn’t convinced by McKillip’s world-building – very little sense of landscape or human geography. Probably my general state of fatigue didn’t help.


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Jul. 14th, 2007 05:51 pm (UTC)
As someone who would rate the series as one of my long-standing favourites I would say two things:

1. You really, really need to read the other two books first, otherwise it will really make no sense whatsoever.

2. The third book does get a bit bogged down in the journey in a couple of places. The ending pays it all off, but again only if you've read the previous books!
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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