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Steven Brust & Emma Bull
book cover

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Who recommends: Shelley, Edith, Lynn, Danielle, Suzanne, Tanya, Shelly, Margaret
Who discommends:

This is one of my very favourite novels ever: the history's well done, the magic (if there is any, and that's a bone of contention in itself) is subtle and intriguing, and the romance between James and Susan is wonderfully portrayed and makes me green with envy, which I suppose is half the point. Is it just me, or are the best books the ones with characters you fall in love with yourself?--Tanya (30 Jul 99)

I'd recommend this, if only because I've never read anything like it (I guess my education was limited). The book is epistolary, entirely written in letters. Each character's voice was so distinct I knew who I was reading without seeing the signature. Also, the sense of history in the book is marvelous. Be warned that there is very little fantasy in it, and a whole lot of philosophy, but the relationship between the h/h is a good one and there's a level of suspense that made it hard to put down.--Shelly (31 Jul 99)

A wonderful book but I can't see why it is classified as SF/fantasy. The supernatural element is minimal and, in fact, is less than some mainstream books. Some of the characters believe in the supernatural but there is no indication that their beliefs are correct. The story is very solid and is not a light read. I enjoyed the politics, history and philosophy but they might not be to everyone's taste. Susan and James's relationship was wonderful; it was well done and convincing.--Margaret (09 Mar 00)

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