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Saturday, December 10, 2005

cover of In the Forests of Serre

The first book I have ever read by McKillip. It will definitely not be my last. Would like to read this book again - slowly - to savor and catch more of the underlying meaning and ideas that are beautifully hidden. McKillip creates a fantasy world where magic is part of the weave of society and the environment. A princes (Sidonie) is sent to marry a prince (Ronan) in another kingdom (Serre), where odd things are known to happen almost commonly. Ronan interacts with Brume the witch, who sends him on a quest to find the firebird who is beautiful, gold, bird, woman, and so captivating that all those who hear its beautiful song lose their hearts.

McKillip uses common magic characters like witch, ogre, talking animals, things that appear one way but are another – but uses them to describe people as well, and not just those who are truly magic. For instance, one man is an ogre because of his spitefulness and anger, which is an interesting crossing of lines. Many people have some form of power or magic, and it is used well and poorly and to affect others for good or evil. Things only possible in a fantasy world happen beautifully and characters that seem disconnected suddenly find themselves needing and affecting each other. McKillip's work is both refreshing and captivating, like the song of the firebird.

Title:In The Forests of Serre
Author: Patricia McKillip
Date published:2003
Number of pages: 295
Notes: Recommended by Lark


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