A TRIUMPH OF SOULS by Alan Dean Foster


Vol. III, Journeys of the Catechist
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Conclusion to Foster’s fantasy trilogy (Carnivores of Light and Darkness, 1998; Into the Thinking Kingdoms, p.183). Humble herdsman Etjole Ehomba of the Naumkib tribe (but how is he a catechist? He neither sermonizes nor evangelizes) with his companions’swordsman Simna, the large black cat Ahlitah, and the hulking Hunkapa Aub’seeks to complete his quest: namely, to rescue the kidnaped Visioness Themaryl from the clutches of an evil sorcerer, Hymneth the Possessed (possessed by, or of, what? the reader wonders). This time out, while crossing the Semordria Ocean, Etjole releases captured winds to blow away the doldrums. He arranges for a Kraken to tow their ship out of a valley in the sea, in exchange for a very large regular coffee; he drives off some faceless islanders who seek to deprive his shipmates of their features; and summons luminescent creatures from the ocean deeps to dispel a persistent fog. In the mountains, he shrugs out of his skin to daunt some belligerent skeletons; threatened by a prairie fire, he shows the companions how to take refuge in the burrows of creatures who inhabit a space between blue and green; he outwits a horde of demons, evades a sentient salt formation, turns a plague creature into a beautiful butterfly, defeats a hammer-wielding giant berserker, and finally, disappointingly, confronts Hymneth. A bumpy and rather pallid conclusion, not the equal of the previous installments; still, fans will want to investigate.

Pub Date: March 2nd, 2000
ISBN: 0-446-52218-X
Page count: 416pp
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1st, 2000


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