Gnome Man’s Land by Esther Friesner

Ace edition January 1

I very much enjoyed this book by Esther Friesner, who is now tied with the late Hugh Cook for my favorite fantasy author. Very smart comedic fantasy, with excellent, interesting, and plentiful description of objects, characters, and scenes. Friesner brings the fantastic to vivid life with detail and clarity. In particular loved the settings of Great Uncle Seamus’ cottage in the leeside and of Lord Palaman and the magical prison cell he puts Timothy Desmond in. Witty and precise prose, however I did find one issue. Early in the book it references it being spring, but later it suddenly becomes October/November, without enough time elapsing in the plot to make this so. Also the plot summary on the back cover mentions his mom falling in love with an evil magician and a virgin sacrifice, neither of which are in the actual book. Wonderful novel though, I am looking forward to not only reading more of Friesner but she’s also sparked my interest in the entire comedic fantasy genre, which on the whole I fine to be very intelligent. Perhaps even moreso than some of the classics.

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