This is the fifth novella written in the Penric series, but is chronologically # 3 - it takes place after Penric and the Shaman and before Penric's Mission. I was glad to see Bujold go back in time to a less-experienced Penric and Desdemona, and it was a very enjoyable entry in a very enjoyable series. In this story, Penric, Inglis, and Oswyl investigate a murder which involves a demon; both shamans and sorcerers get involved.

Bujold's magic systems continue to be cool, and if you like seeing magic treated with an analytical, scientific approach, this is the series for you. Unusually, it balances that with a type of magic which is more numinous and magical-feeling, which is the Gods themselves. This is one of my very favorite series for benevolent fictional Gods - I love the visits by the Gods, which are consistently long enough to be satisfying and brief/occasional enough to carry weight and not overstay their welcome.

Penric's Fox: Penric and Desdemona Book 3
chomiji: Doa from Blade of the Immortal can read! Who knew? (Doa - books)

From: [personal profile] chomiji

My enjoyment of this series is odd only in that I've completely bounced off of Vorkosigan whenever I've tried reading any of it.

chomiji: Doa from Blade of the Immortal can read! Who knew? (Doa - books)

From: [personal profile] chomiji

I've liked the other Five Gods books, actually, especially Chalion and Paladin of Souls. I love the fact that the protagonists are older folks, and also the magic system (for the reasons you've noted).

From: [personal profile] ejmam

Have you tried the non-Miles books? It might be that your are allergic to him. I see some similarities with Penric -- he gets focused on a problem to the point of tunnel vision, he's smart, he's self-aware enough to laugh at himself, but Penric has Desdemonia to keep him grounded, while Miles lacks any kind of off-switch.


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