Eric Flint is the author of the New York Times best seller 1634: The Galileo Affair (with Andrew Dennis)—a novel in his top-selling "Ring of Fire" alternate history series. His first novel for Baen, Mother of Demons, was picked by Science Fiction Chronicle as a best novel of the year. His 1632, which launched the ring of Fire series, won widespread critical praise, as from Publishers Weekly, which called him "an SF author of particular note, one who can entertain and edify in equal, and major measure." A longtime labor union activist with a master's degree in history, he currently resides in northwest Indiana with his wife Lucille.
The Sorceress of Karresby Eric Flint, Dave Freer
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As Captain Pausert had often had occasion to observe, life just wasn't fair! Hadn't he (with the help of the notorious witches of Karres, of course) outmaneuvered the deadliest of space pirates and eliminated the threat of the Worm World (as told in The Witches of Karres), after which, at the least, he deserved some time off. No such luck, though, as the Empress herself sent him on a secret mission to stop the nanite plague, but an enemy had somehow convinced the Imperial Fleet that he was actually a wanted criminal, so after a battle leaving his ship in urgent need of repairs all three of them joined an interstellar traveling circus (don't ask!) in order to save the galaxy once again (as told in The Wizard of Karres).
Time for a vacation? Don't be ridiculous—there's a new urgent mission that has Captain Pausert's name on it! This new novel finds the long-suffering Captain and the two young Karres witches—Goth, who vows she will marry him when she grows up, and her younger sister The Leewit—being sent off to investigate mysterious and ominous events in the notorious Chaladoor region of space. Goth soon becomes aware that unknown but surely inimical forces are tracking them, and in order to foil them she takes a desperate route to travel back in time and meet Pausert as a young boy. Meanwhile, the Captain and the Leewit find themselves in the middle of their own desperate situation in the Chaladoor.
Whoever it was who said that a change was as good as a vacation never met any of the Witches of Karres—nor experienced their amazing talent for getting Captain Pausert into trouble.
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Having read the Witches of Karres I can say this book ALMOST gets it. There's something missing. The book felt slightly winded, dry in places, stale in others. There wasn't the life and whit that can be found in the first of this series. It was almost like the author was rushed. There was also a definite fear of the budding relationship between Pausert and Goth. The storyline appeared overly sanitized for your protection; like there was a Pedophillia Fairy floating around with a large wand ready to attack anything that even smacked of 'inappropriate'. If you are going to do it, do it. Don't go half way. Don't 'vaguely go where almost everyone has sort of headed in that direction before'. 'Do or do not' as Yoda would say. This also relates to the growing power that the Witches of Karres and Captain Pausert are gaining. They are going to be a force to be reckoned with. So . . . what's next? You've got a 500 lb gorilla in the room...now what? The book was worth the money spent but I sort of wish I had it in paperback, not hardcover.
When James Schmitz Ended "The Witches of Karres", the ending practically invited sequels. The two so far have done a good job of continuing the basic approach of the original. One of the most significant things in the stories of Schmitz is the ability of young women to manage what they need to manage, definitely a feature here. I have followed and will continue to follow the adventures of Pausert, Goth, the Leewit, and others with interest. Through the two sequels the characters have developed as one would hope for, especially with children. The one thing preventing the fifth star is the characteristic of all sequels: if you have not read the earlier books, you will be rather at sea. The best solution is to start from the beginning, with "The Witches of Karres. That one should have six stars at least.
I recommend the series. It is entertaining and very well written.