The compelling sequel to The Reindeer People , a saga of magic and triumph in an ancient world. Kerlew stared at the immense stone that jutted up from the tundra. Power radiated from it like heat from a fire. It attracted the boy and filled him with fear. And then he was alone. There was a brush of sound, of dark moving shadows and then the ...
The compelling sequel to The Reindeer People , a saga of magic and triumph in an ancient world. Kerlew stared at the immense stone that jutted up from the tundra. Power radiated from it like heat from a fire. It attracted the boy and filled him with fear. And then he was alone. There was a brush of sound, of dark moving shadows and then the sudden flash of a glistening eye. He pressed his palms back against the stone's rough surface and faced the night creatures that surrounded him. The magic is strong in Kerlew. Every day it grows, reaching out to the Wolf spirit that will be his guide. But the magic in Kerlew that calls to the beasts and to the spirit world also calls to Carp, the evil old shaman, who follows Kerlew and his mother, Tillu, across the frozen wastes. When he finds them, he will bind them to him, and shape Kerlew's powers for his own uses.
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I really enjoyed this book. The gradual awakening of the specialised shamanistic powers (previously untapped in young Najd Kerlew) is a really engrossing plot-thread that Lindholm has created in this larger world of herding, travelling and hunting. Equally as engaging if not more so for me is the continued exploration of the tentative relationship between caring herdsman Heckram and flighty healer Tillu.
However, I have to admit to feeling slightly deflated with the final weaving together of all the plot threads in this concluding story. I believe both `The Reindeer People' and `Wolf's Brother' were originally intended to be released as one volume (`The Saga of the Reindeer People') and while I don't feel the story suffers with being split into two parts, for me there is a disparity between the magical acts (particularly in the final scenes) and the very practical, bordering on `ordinary' world that Lindholm has so carefully cultivated throughout both novels. Unlike the skilling, wit bonds and wizardwood magics of Hobbs trilogies (this author's other alias) that are so vividly explained and believably introduced into the `mundane' reality of the protagonist, I didn't feel that Kerlew's particular brand of shamanistic magic was particularly well integrated into the greater landscape, especially in one of the final scenes when his powers are unveiled for the first time. Consequently the final reveal didn't really excite me the way I expected it to.
Yet still, this is a fantastically engaging and at times brutal world that Lindholm has brought into being and one that I was left wishing I could know more about. Tillu, Heckram, Kerlew and of all the herdspeople are a heady combination, so I'm at a loss now that the curtains have been drawn on yet another unique land imagined into being by this talented author. More please.
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