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Thursday, 15 July 2010

Review of Seer’s Moon by Karen Wolfe

Seers MoonImage by stuartaken via Flickr

Seer’s Moon is Karen Wolfe’s second fantasy novel centring on the unusual activities of Granny Beamish and her cronies. With its mixture of comic style and supernatural content, the book had me smiling, chuckling and laughing out loud; much to the consternation of my fellow bus travellers. The story, or at least the main thread, follows the fate of poor Kenneth who has inadvertently become a werewolf and is being chased by a sinister bounty hunter. Granny Beamish and her friends, family and associates, who have some sympathy with the vegetarian Kenneth and his harmless, if somewhat destructive, werewolf alter ego, do their best to prevent his capture and execution. The incompetent local police, an interfering busybody, and a creepy ambitious member of Granny’s Seer community all provide the necessary conflict. Meanwhile, Granny has to contend with the advances of her ex boyfriend, who jilted her, as he tries to win her back.

Seers, for those who are unsure, are members of a parallel community who use telepathy and certain types of magic. It isn’t wise for a normal human to mess with an accomplished Seer, especially one with the gifts possessed by Granny Beamish.

Karen Wolfe writes in a style of her own; colloquially and with a type of humour that touches my laughter muscles. This is a very English novel in many ways and some of the language and references may be lost on readers from outside. But there is so much that is universal in appeal that this very Englishness acts as an enhancement, giving the book a quirky character that will appeal to readers of all nationalities. And, talking of ‘quirky’ this is the way her characters come across. All are individual, even the dogs, wolf, griffons and other animals, and especially the rampaging sheep. Her people have flaws as well as positive attributes and all of them are very human, sometimes touching and always hilarious, often in ways that completely escape the characters themselves.

If you are seeking enjoyment with the option of laughing and smiling whilst examining human frailty and strength, this is definitely for you. I thoroughly enjoyed it and happily recommend it. 

Word of the day; narrative – concerned with telling a story, the series of facts, events and incidents that comprise a tale.  ‘The writer’s dramatic narrative of the fantasy tale was worthy of  J.R.R. Tolkien.’

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