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08/30/2003 Entry: "Barbara Hambly's STRANGER AT THE WEDDING"

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This story strongly reminded me of the sleeping beauty fairy tale. A black sheep daughter of the family, reviled by her father for being a wizard, shows up uninvited to the family home a day before her younger sister's wedding. Kyra does go on to sabotage her sister's wedding in a number of magical ways, but her seeming villainy disguises a desperate attempt to save her sister's life.

I'm not sure I liked Kyra, but she is interesting. She has a strong personality and a defiantly individual sense of style. But I also found her abrasive at times. The person in the story who actually seems to understand Kyra, to see beyond prejudice, is her sister's groom. Spens, a merchant and the mayor's son, also surprises you by not being as stolid as he first appears. I liked this pairing a lot. And even though I knew the ending was HEA courtesy of all your previous comments, it was still quite suspenseful due to the fact Hambly had placed some real believable obstacles in the Kyra and Spens' way.--Preeti

P.S.-I love the striking Don Maitz cover art.

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