Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Jake's War, by John Booth

When we last saw Jake, he was suspected in the disappearance of a young girl named Bronwyn.  Now imprisoned for her abduction.  As the saga unfolds, he determines that Bronwyn wants to use her powers to take over the kingdom of Salice, and she does not care who she hurts in the process.  While dealing with battling Bronwyn, Jake must also balance two pregnant fiances, Jenny and Esmeralda, and prepare for a royal wedding ceremony for the three of them.  The wedding will prove the perfect setting for Bronwyn's attack; will they be ready for her?

Oh Mr. Booth, you have done it again.  This book left me snickering and enthralled.  Because of books as well written as this, my appreciation for the fantasy genre has grown by leaps and bounds.  Booth once again maneuvers us through rich storyworlds, in which we encounter memorable characters.  The story just pulls you along for a fanciful ride, and I loved every minute of it.

I personally like the balance of the "world" as we know it and the different multiverses through which Jake and Bronwyn traverse.  It has enough of the familiar to make fantasy newbies like me feel comfortable, while providing imaginative frolics for long time fantasy fans.  All of the multiverses are easy to conceptualize, something not always true in fantasy writing.  

As with the first book in the Wizards series, Jake proves to be an engaging character.  He is a bumbling wreck of a young man, and he leaves us both cheering for his success and secretly chuckling over his failures.  I quite enjoyed watching him juggle two women.  Bronwyn, on the other hand, is a character that we want to despise, and who has certainly earned our disdain, but in the end I merely pitied.

While the themes are a bit mature, the book is appropriate for older young adult readers, as well as an adult audience.
When a book transports you to a time and place other than the one in which you live, you know it is successful.  Such is the legacy of the writing of John Booth.  

I received a review copy courtesy of the author.

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