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Saturday, January 21, 2006

cover of Swords of Haven

When I first came across this book, I was mildy interested in it because it was by the author of Blue Moon Rising, which is a marvellous book. It was only later that I learned that the two title characters, Hawk & Fisher, are actually the Prince Rupert and Princess Julia from Blue Moon Rising; they have taken new names and travelled far from the Forest Kingdom, gotten married, and become Captains in the Guard of the city of Haven. It's a little interesting to see the same characters further on in their lives, and in a very different setting... and if you're familiar with the darkness and the demons they've faced before, then you're more likely to understand why they are so capable and unfazed by the horrors of Haven, a city full of corrupt politicians and drug trafficking, alongside wizards and vampires and unfair companies who use zombies to get work done during strikes.

The adventures of Hawk and Fisher are quite fascinating, and will keep you both wondering and enthralled. The first major case is a locked-door mystery with magic involved-- while Hawk & Fisher have an isolation spell to keep all the suspects within a manor house overnight, and a truth-spell to help them track down the murderer, they also have to deal with magical beings and the clever manipulation of magic that was used to accomplish the initial murder. In the second book, Hawk & Fisher are assigned to protect a political candidate for the Reform party-- and end up uncovering plenty of secrets (everyone has at least one). In the third book, Hawk & Fisher have an even stranger murder to solve-- someone has been killing the supernatural beings on the Street of Gods, and they have to figure out who quickly, before all the other beings begin a God War.

The mysteries are all tightly plotted, and the resolutions make complete sense within the world of Haven. Green's writing is not very literary, and sometimes seems a bit formulaic (his description of each new character always seems to be organized the same way, and even the volumes are structured similarly). However, he does have a wry, humorous tone which I find enjoyable.

One oddity: when they took new names, Fisher gave herself a first name, Isobel; but apparently Hawk never chose one (or, at least, we never hear about if he did).

Title:Swords of Haven: The Adventures of Hawk & Fisher
collects Hawk & Fisher (1990), Winner Takes All (1991), and The God Killer (1991)
Author:Simon R. Green
Date published:1999
Genre:Fantasy / Adventure / Mystery
Series:Hawk & Fisher
Number of pages:540
Notes:Repeat reading of Hawk & Fisher


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