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    Review of HERE BE MONSTERS by Christopher Stasheff


    Ace Books, 2001

    When his fiancee sees a vision of a monster invasion, Gregory gathers his brother Geoffrey and their friend and future brother-in-law, Alain, Crown Prince of Gramarye to investigate. Their respective fiancees, however, are hardly the type to stay at home and worry. Alouette, Cordelia (sister to Gregory and Geoffrey), and Quicksilver set off to watch over their men and perform any rescues that may be needed.

    Someone, or something, has launched a plague of monsters on Gramarye--a plague that seems to have some purpose beyond terrorizing the natives. As they confront and defeat each of the monsters, the two groups of travellers begins to gather hints of that purpose and of an intended invasion of their world. Defeating local monsters is one thing--defeating an extra-dimensional invasion is something else.

    Author Christopher Stasheff (see more reviews of novels by Stasheff) was one of the originators of the funny fantasy with his wonderful THE WARLOCK IN SPITE OF HIMSELF--the first novel in this series. As with many continuing series, the Warlock series seems to consist of a mix of essential novels and novels that could be missed. HERE BE MONSTERS falls into the second category. It contains plenty of puns, a bit of character growth, particularly on the part of future king Alain, and your basic magic and sword fighting. Unlike the original WARLOCK or earlier novels in this HEIRS series (where each of the Warlock's children finds their mate), HERE BE MONSTERS lacks the real emotional impact that makes for a powerful book.

    HERE BE MONSTERS is a pleasant light read. Fans of the series will want to read it. Fantasy fans who haven't discovered the series yet would do better to start with one of the other novels in the series.

    Two Stars

    Reviewed 5/22/03

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