Debut fantasy suggests that Prospero never burned his books or broke his staff.
Instead, he kept his magic, sired more children and founded Prospero Inc., a corporation that negotiates with elemental spirits to prevent natural disasters. In the present day, the still-virginal Miranda runs the company. When she discovers a cryptic note from her father warning about “the Three Shadowed Ones,” she immediately sets off to locate her extremely dysfunctional siblings—but not, oddly, her father, who is apparently trapped in Hell. En route, she confronts various demonic perils, as well as Ferdinand, mysteriously returned after jilting her at the altar many years ago. Sadly, the charming naïf from The Tempest has become distant and cold; unless Miranda is under a spell, as some of the characters suggest, it’s hard to understand why someone with untold wealth and years of youth has had such a duty-bound life with so little fun in it. A spell would also explain why she willfully ignores several obvious plot points and dismisses them when they’re pointed out. Frankly, most of Prospero’s offspring appear to be so unpleasant that it’s difficult to care that they’re in danger.
Despite these flaws, Miranda’s adventures are sufficiently gripping to prompt hopes for more emotionally and plot-satisfying revelations in future installments.