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Saturday, June 20, 2009

Review: The Outskirter's Secret

This is book two of Rosemary Kirstein's Steerswoman series, and is out of print but can be bought as part of an omnibus collection.

The story begins slowly, with Rowan and Bel heading towards the location of the guide-star that they knew to have fallen. As readers, we think we know what the guide-stars are, so the first half of the novel goes slowly, exploring outskirters' life, tribes, hazards, food, and all. I was hoping the plot moved on quickly, but it showed no signs of doing so until about halfway through the novel, when suddenly everything happened at once.

Not only did everything happen at once, Kirstein suddenly went into fast forward mode, skipping weeks at a time near the end, and we get an unsatisfying finish, where we've learned enough to be intrigued, but not enough to get a big picture. Clearly, Kirstein's suffering from a sophomore slump of sorts. Hopefully the next novel will be better.

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