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    Review of THE WOAD TO WUIN by Peter David (see his website)


    Pocket Books, August 2002

    Sir Apropos of Nothing, sometimes knight, part-time thief, and full time cynic, finds himself with a magic ring that can only lead to destruction--and that must itself be destroyed. Unlike the more famous ring, this one affixes to a more sensitive part of the body and, instead of invisibility, creates an irresistable urge for sex in any woman he comes in contact with. So, off to the adventures goes Apropos. Or rather, one adventure after another. Because, just as Apropos gets settled down after the conclusion of the ring quest, a seer wanders into Apropos's bar and warns him that he is about to set off on a journey--the road to ruin, or is it the woad to wuin? Apropos tries to fight his fate but fails.

    THE WOAD TO WUIN is an interesting book. The initial adventure (the ring quest) is a pure lark, put in to amuse or infuriate Tolkien fans (select amuse--it's better for you). The real story begins with the destruction of Apropos's bar and his descent into the catacombs underneath it. There Apropos's cynicism is put to the test--and mostly survives. With a few exceptions, this portion of the story is more thoughtful than funny. Apropos is an everyman hero. With his lame leg, his only-average skill with weapons, and his deep faith that the universe really is out to get him, he nevertheless struggles to maintain a degree of humanity--in a world where doing that just might be his undoing.

    Apropos's relationships with the two women in his life--beautiful and willing Kate, and nagging and unwilling Sharee is fundamental to the story and is also somewhat hard to follow and confusing. At times, Apropos acts unnaturally, not bothering to try to explain or justify himself, just when you were persuaded that he would stoop to any lenght. Author Peter David's THE WOAD TO WUIN (see more reviews of novels by Peter David) isn't as slap-knee funny as the book blurb makes you believe, but it is also more thoughtful and more intriguing than it at first appears.

    Three Stars

    Reviewed 2/18/03

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