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Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Servant review by Rich Horton

Kind words from Rich Horton!

Michael Ehart's The Servant of the Manthycore is a short novel that appeared in 2007 from a small outfit called Double-Edged Publishing. I confess I started reading with minimal hopes. But I was quite pleasantly surprised. The title character and heroine is a Bronze Age woman who with her lover was tricked into an encounter with the Manthycore, a monster that requires a human servant to kill other people for him to eat. The Manthycore has imprisoned the lover in a sort of stasis, as a hostage, while the woman, later named Ninshi, travels around, almost invincible, killing people. By the time of the main action she was for generations been trying to find a way to escape this service. In this book she rescues a young slave girl, kills some bad people, and finds a hint at a secret that may allow her to compel the Manthycore to release her, only to again be betrayed. Besides some fine action and some nicely plotted episodes, and sturdy writing, I enjoyed the hints seeded through the book of some familiar characters. The main weakness is that the novel, assembled from several short stories, is a bit loosely structured. To be marketable to a major publisher it would probably have to be twice its length (and I think it could bear that expansion) and the plot would have to be tightened considerably. But as it stands it's enjoyable work.

Okay now!

link here: The Elephant Forgets -

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