Monday, August 9, 2010

Wizard Squared by K E Mills

Wizard Squared (Rogue Agent volume 3) by K E Mills. Orion £6.99
Reviewed by Jan Edwards

Witches Incorporated is part of the system, despite its best efforts to remain independent. So when it finds that in a parallel world one of its number, the powerful wizard Professor Gerald Dunwoody, has taken over this world with dark magic – and is looking to step into theirs as well – something must be done. Witches Inc realises that only person who can hope to stop him is its own Professor Gerald Dunwoody. Except that he has gone missing. There are twists and turns galore with magic and temporal glitches, and to describe any further would give too much away.

In this volume we have all the usual suspects from the first books in the Rogue Agent series: Wizard Gerald, Princess Mellisande and the anarchic bewitched bird Reg, all setting out to right the wrongs of the Gerald who, in the alternate reality took a slightly different choice for the best of reasons and became evil. This is a classic alternate universe conundrum where the ‘heroes’ in this world are faced with darker versions of themselves in the other.

Wizard Squared is a far darker story than volumes one and two. The writing is impeccable and I enjoyed all those darker elements. But I did get frustrated with long sections of dialogue that told very little and found myself skim-reading whole sections at a time. That’s not to say I disliked the book. Its inventive take on magic is a welcome change from rote fantasy, and its darker elements were especially intriguing. I look forward to reading the promised book four.

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