Queen of Demons

by David Drake

Reviewed by Coral

Four friends from the small town of Barca's Hamlet have found themselves, along with their friends Tenoctris - a wizard out of her own time - and Liane - a daughter of a noble line - drawn into political intrigue that could forever alter the course of their world.
The Queen of the Isles, a powerful wizard, plans to use Garric and Sharina, the last descendents of the true royal line, to find an ancient throne and claim its power. Her husband, King Valence, has his own plans. Fearing his wife's power, he has his wizard summon a creature of magic through human sacrifice. He also plans to eliminate Garric, who he views as a potential rival to his throne.
Scheming nobles have also heard word of Garric's lineage and plan to use him to free them from both the Queen's evil and the King's weakness.
My main complaint about the last book I read was that not enough happened. This book is the opposite in that I feel too much happened - and most of it was pointless.
The first couple of hundred pages of the book seemed like an endless string of obstacle after obstacle being thrown in the path of the 6 main characters, but without any consequence as the characters easily overcome one before moving on to the next one.
Garric's story finally gets to the point and focuses on the main plot, but Ilna, Cashel and Sharina's stories spend way too much time before finally meeting up with Garric's plot.
I also didn't really enjoy the endless repetition of, "just a shepherd from Barca's Hamlet", "just an innkeeper's daughter", "a wizard of insignificant power." There has to be other ways to describe the characters, or other aspects of their personalities.
I was kind of bored by this book, which is just disappointing because of how much I remember liking book 1 and how long I spent tracking down all the other books in the series.
Grade: C