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1. Wizard's Holiday: The Seventh
2. Omnitopia Dawn: Omnitopia #1
3. A Wizard of Mars: The Ninth Book
4. To Visit the Queen (Cat Novel)
5. Deep Wizardry (digest): The Second
6. High Wizardry (digest): The Third
7. Wizards at War: The Eighth Book
8. The Wizard's Dilemma (digest):
9. A Wizard Alone: The Sixth Book
10. A Wizard Abroad (digest): The
11. The Door Into Fire (The Tale of
12. Spock's World (Star Trek)
13. Diane Duane's Box of Wizardry
14. So You Want to Be a Wizard (digest):
15. Star Trek: The Wounded Sky
16. Doctor's Orders (Star Trek, Book
17. Dark Mirror (Star Trek: The Next
18. Stealing the Elf-King's Roses
19. A Wizard Abroad
20. Rihannsu: The Bloodwing Voyages

1. Wizard's Holiday: The Seventh Book in the Young Wizards Series
by Diane Duane, Diane Duane
Paperback: 448 Pages (2005-06-01)
list price: US$6.95 -- used & new: US$0.89
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0152052070
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Rest and relaxation--that's what Nita thinks she's going to get when she and her partner-wizard Kit go on a wizardly "cultural exchange" program. But nothing about wizardry--not even vacation--is ever quite that simple!
Amazon.com Review
In the wizarding world, a "wizard’s holiday" is somewhat of an inside joke, being a "vacation or pleasure trip that rapidly turned into something else, usually involving work, but that was still pleasant in a strange way, simply because of the change." Diane Duane’s seventh novel in the Young Wizards series is a perfect example of a wizard’s holiday. Fresh from their most recent adventures inside an autistic boy’s mind (A Wizard Alone), wizard partners Nita and Kit are offered an unexpected windfall--a cultural exchange program halfway across the galaxy to a seemingly perfect world--when Nita’s wizard whiz-kid sister Dairine misbehaves and is galactically grounded by her mentor. Meanwhile, Dairine, stuck at home, plays host to three alien counterparts in the cultural exchange. For once, it seems like everyone will get a little break--there are no universes to save, no underwater exploits, no battles between good and evil. Which brings us back to that wizardly joke. As Nita realizes at the conclusion of Wizard’s Holiday, the "Powers That Be" never send any wizard anywhere without reason. It’s up to the wizards to figure out just what that reason is--and get on with the business of saving universes and battling evil. Excellent, intelligent writing, with enough technology intermingled with magic to please the palate of every fantasy and science fiction reader. Even readers outside the genre should take a look; you won’t be disappointed! (Ages 9 and older)--Emilie Coulter ... Read more

Customer Reviews (18)

4-0 out of 5 stars An Enjoyable Read
Wizards Holiday was an enjoyable read. However it Cannot be read in isolation. With this Book Duane is really starting to get more of an Epic feel to the Young Wizards Series.

Note that there are some longer reaching story arcs which get started in this book but do not get developed substantially. The Reason is that they will be continued in the eight and I belive in the ninth book (which isn't out yet).

4-0 out of 5 stars wizard's holiday
This book was purchased for my son who started reading the series in school.He is an avid reader sometimes reading 2 or 3 books at the same time and he was very excited to receive this book.He is already done and awaiting the next installment.

4-0 out of 5 stars The Wizard's Holiday: The Seventh Book in the Young Wizards Series
Another entertaining book in the series.Good fun with some real life problems.Book eight is enjoyable too.

5-0 out of 5 stars Wizards series keeps kids reading
I have read the first 5. I work in a K thru 6 elem library and I recommend to students that like Harry Potter ,Charlie Bone, "LeEngle" stories.
Lots of imagination and adventure on a sci-fi level.
Reading level 4th and up.

4-0 out of 5 stars Duane's magic returns
I love the how the Young Wizard series seems to focus on character development but always manages to slip in educational and social commentary along the way.This novel was slightly more frustrating to follow than the other books, as it darted between the scenes of two different storylines -- but it all tied together.Seeing both sides of a cultural exchange program was fascinating, the more so as the foreign exchange students were of different species. ... Read more

2. Omnitopia Dawn: Omnitopia #1
by Diane Duane
Hardcover: 352 Pages (2010-08-03)
list price: US$24.95 -- used & new: US$11.69
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0756406234
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
A near-future techno-thriller from New York Times bestselling author Diane Duane.

It's the first quarter of the twenty-first century, and "massively multiplayer" on-line games have been around for a couple of decades. In an increasingly wired and computer-friendly world they've become a form of entertainment so popular they're giving television and films a run for the money. And the most popular gaming universe of all is Omnitopia, created by genius programmer Dev Logan.

For millions of people around the world, Omnitopia is an obsession, a passionate pastime, almost a way of life. Omnitopia is a virtual place where dreams come true-players can create their own universes within the game's structure, and participate in the profits if their piece of the universe is a hit. Ten million players routinely play in Omnitopia, and at any given time, nearly a million of them are on-line, living in a world more real to them then their own.

Worldwide, Omnitopia is now as much a culture as a game. Participants can become involved in it in a hundred different ways. Some game as if their lives depended on it, spending thousands of hours, or thousands of dollars, or both, on quests in search of "game glory" among their fellow players.Some game only to acquire sufficient in-game "value" to become entitled to become subcreators themselves, able to build new levels and start raking in the so-called "one percent of infinity" which is the leveler's share of the profits. But there are also people who don't game at all, preferring to use the massive platform simply to explore its worlds, or to interact with other participants. Some people do nothing but design on-line weapons and other items for Omnitopia gamers, and sell them-or act as brokers, buying and selling game artifacts to order. Some subcreators do the same kind of design and creation, but for tailored Microcosms or slices of them: these are the "unreal estate" dealers.Some players speculate in game "gold" on the success or popularity of Microcosms, rather than actually playing in them. And of course there are thieves and swindlers, cheaters who live to find the loophole in the game that will outside it in the real world.

Now Dev and his people are preparing to rollout a major new expansion to the Omnitopia system.And even as players, staff, the media, and the heavy hitters on the world financial scene wait eagerly for this fast-approaching and momentous event, there are others preparing to play a very different game-one that is meant to strike at the heart of Omnitopia and bring the entire system crashing down.... ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

4-0 out of 5 stars speedy pace, somewhat static characters
Omnitopia Dawn is the start of a new series by Diane Duane, probably best known for her excellent Young Wizards fantasy series (highly recommended, btw). Young Wizards has always been a fantasy with some science-fiction underpinnings, and in Omnitopia Dawn Duane reverses that balance, giving us a near-future science fiction tale with some fantasy possibilities. It's mostly a fun read, though I don't think it matches, at least not yet, the quality and depth of Young Wizards.

The title comes from a massive multi-player game created and run by billionaire wunderkind Dev Logan and his Magnificent Seven inner circle, along with a cast of thousands of happy employees, many of the working in the company's campus where the boss lives in Castle Dev. Already the most popular such virtual reality game, the story opens three days before Omnitopia launches a huge expansion of its "macrocosms "(in-house designed world modules characters game in) and "microcosms (smaller such gaming worlds designed by lucky gameplayers chosen via being "knighted"). The grand opening is fraught with economic anxiety as well as the usual new product launch concerns about bugs, but even more nerve wracking is the expectation that hackers will try to take advantage of the free publicity and wage massive attacks on the system, either for simple monetary gain or to trumpet their ability to "take down" allegedly the world's greatest computer system. Also in the mix is Omnitopia's number one gaming competitor, a company led by Phil Sorenson, with whom Dev was once in partnership until it flamed out horribly. Unbeknownst to Dev, Sorenson is working via various legal and not-so-legal means to destroy Omnitopia, and he seemingly has the resources to make it happen.
That's the major plot in a nutshell, a relatively constrained and straightforward suspense plot as to whether the bad guy Sorenson will take down the good guy Dev. Also in the narrative mix is Rik--a young gamer who was just knighted and is trying to create his new microcosm from scratch, a disgruntled minimum-wage kind of employee who is part of the hacker attack on Omnitopia, and a Time Magazine reporter newly-arrived on Omnitopia's campus for a major story on Dev and eager to find some "dirt."

A minor problem is there actually isn't much dirt; Dev is as squeaky clean as his public image, which makes him easy to root to but also perhaps a bit too-good-to-be-true. Or perhaps more to the point, it isn't so much that Dev himself is like this but that seemingly the entire corporate structure of his company is, from Dev to his Magnificent Seven group of high execs to the lower employees. Meanwhile, Sorenson is painted a bit broadly as the economic villain, though there is a bit of complexity thrown in via his past relationship with Dev as former partners. The gamer developer just given the right to build his own microcosm also falls a bit into the amazingly good descriptor, as does his wife (although in Duane's defense on this one at least, he was chosen because of that "goodness" so it makes sense in the plot structure).

What this all mostly means is there isn't a lot of character growth or depth, one of the shining strengths of the Young Wizards series:characterizations here are much more static and much less nuanced. This includes the secondary characters as well, none of which come alive on the page really. On the other hand, as mentioned, it does make it easy to root for Dev and his loyal companions against his petty, greedy foes.
As with her fantasy series, Duane moves plot along speedily and mostly smoothly. There are a few info-dump moments and one or two scenes where interior monologue does a bit too much explaining, but we're talking a total of maybe 5-6 pages out of the entire novel. Mostly it zips along, changing point-of-view as we go and while the plot may be a bit more straightforward than it needed to be, without many unforeseen turns, it's mostly a lot of fun from start to end, especially the scenes in Omnitopia itself, which is rich with potential (along with the new hollow-world microcosm we see Rik develop we get to pop into or hear about a slew of tantalizing alternate history, sci-fi, or fantasy worlds) for future books. And while Omnitopia Dawn stands on its own just fine, resolving all the major plot issues, its ending broadens the universe outward, allowing for a wholly new storyline to develop in future books. While I wish the characters were more subtly and fully developed, and the plot a bit less straight and predictable, having seen what Duane can do with both those elements, Omnitopia Dawn was an enjoyable enough start to draw me back in for its sequel.

5-0 out of 5 stars Implementing a Major Upgrade
Omnitopia Dawn (2010) is the first SF novel in the Omnitopia series.It is set in the near future when online games have evolved into virtual environments with RealFeal interfaces.Omnitopia is the largest such environment, with one hundred and twenty-one Macrocosms and over eight hundred Microcosms, each containing a unique virtual world.

In this novel, Dev Logan is CEO and First Gamer of Omnitopia.He is married to Mirabel and they have one daughter, four year old Lola.

Jim Margoulies is CFO of Omnitopia.He is also a longstanding friend of Dev.

Tau Vitoria is chief server engineer of Omnitopia.He is a highly trusted associate.

Rik Maliani is a gamer in Omnitopia playing a medimage in the game.He is married to Angela and they have two boys.Rik wears a brown uniform and works for a package delivery service.

Delia Harrington is a freelance writer.She has an appointment at Omnitopia for Time magazine article on Dev and the company.

Phil Sorensen is CEO of Infinity Inc and a former associate of Dev.When Phil hadn't taken their advise and the business fell apart, Dev and his friends started their own company.Phil is still expecting Dev to apologetically come back and admit that he was wrong.

In this story, Omnitopia is close to implementing a major upgrade of their game servers.They have acquired some new highspeed memory that should allow them to serve many more gamers.But they are also expecting major attacks on their facilities before or during switch over.

Dev is up to his eyeballs in work.His workers have secretly switched over the software to the new servers, but the new memory is not fully activated.There are still some major problems on the bug sheet, including an intermittent problem in the Conscientious Objector code.

Only Dev and Tau are allowed to work on the CO module, so getting time to debug the code is cramping their schedules.They both make a pass through the code and notices errors flicker up and then vanish.Dev tries again later and still doesn't have any luck in resolving the problem.

Delia takes up time for both Dev and Tau.She has a problem with big corporations and is looking for dirt.The loose culture at Omnitopia only arouses her suspicions.

Mirabel is working hard on getting Dev to eat during the switch over preparations.She has spread the word around and every one Dev meets reminds him to eat something.Lola even buys him some ice cream with her own money.

Meanwhile, Rik is running errands in Omnitopia city.He is supposed to pick up some robes and then meet some friends.He steps into portal in the Ring of Elich and finds himself in an empty Microcosm.Then he learns that he has been chosen by Omnitopia to develop his own virtual world.

This tale presents Dev with a crisis larger than anything he has ever faced before.He is also presented with a personal challenge of major consequence.All in the three days before switch over.

Apparently the author queried programmers and hardware engineers about their ideas of a perfect software company.Omnitopia seems like an ideal workplace.But this wish fulfillment fantasy is rarely found in the real world.

Naturally Dev and his corporation survive the attacks.Yet many loose threads are left dangling for the next volume to address.Read and enjoy!

-Arthur W. Jordin

4-0 out of 5 stars Good vs Evil in a virtual reality game
While I haven't read everything Duane has ever written, I've read most of her novels.Which should tell you that I really, really like her work.

The problem has always been that she starts a series and then leaves readers hanging.(Where's the final book in the Tale of the Five, Ms Duane?We've been waiting for "The Door Into Starlight" for over a decade now.And the third cat wizard novel?)The one exception to this is the Young Wizards series, which is now nine volumes.The last two show signs that Ms Duane had her mind partly on her many other projects: the plots are not as tight as earlier books in the series.

This is the first installment of another series.Unusually for Duane, it reads just like an opening novel in a series.Lots of exposition, lots of description, plot moves slowly.Thankfully it doesn't have a cliff-hanger ending: the particular threat that emerges in this book is fully resolved by the end of the novel.

The interesting idea for the setting: in the not-too-distant future, online gaming has reached a level of "reality" that allows your consciousness actually to inhabit your avatar when you're in the game.In a nice touch of realism, the better the tech you can afford the more fully you inhabit your avatar.If you spend enough, you'll even be able to taste the food you eat inside the game.But the tech is cheap enough for people with a moderate income to buy it.And some gamers even prefer onscreen action, rather than inhabiting their avatars.

In the online game that's the focus of the novel (as opposed to the online game owned and operated by the bad guy), really good players are offered an opportunity to build their own "microcosm"--a "world" in the game's "universe."They then receive a share of the profits whenever another player goes into their microcosm.

Yes, profits.Unusually for Duane, the main plot of this novel is concerned with industrial espionage.Will the good guy's company--and the online universe it hosts--survive a cyber-attack?Or will the good guy's rival (who's an old business partner) succeed in crashing the universe, obliterating the good guy's wealth and leaving his thousands of staff unemployed?

If you're a Duane reader, you should know that all the swords are virtual.Yes, there are "battle" scenes, but they all take place in one level or another of virtual reality.No wizardry except the cyber magic of being either in an awesome online game or inside the software code that controls the game's servers.On the other hand, you don't get very far into the book before you wish the online game it describes existed in our reality!

This is a fairly strong offering by a very good author.It's a departure from most of her other novels.The big worry is that Duane won't come out with another novel in this series anytime soon.

5-0 out of 5 stars Enter Omnitopia: You Won't Want to Leave
Despite being a multi-billion-dollar industry, a driving force in the world of technology, and a pastime shared by millions worldwide, online gaming doesn't get the greatest treatment in science fiction. It's either ignored, bypassed for the more obvious target of the Internet, or worse, treated as a sort of corruptive force. "Omnitopia Dawn", however, asks a unique question: what if an online game could be a force for creation and human development? How could such a world survive without being destroyed or going out of balance?

The answer is, through the people involved in creating and maintaining it. "Omnitopia Dawn" is actually surprisingly character driven for speculative fiction, with a rich cast of characters who never feel false or one-dimensional. Prime among them is Dev Logan, creator and CEO of the titular game, who's struggling to keep his creation afloat in the face of an upcoming expansion and a vindictive ex-partner set on seeing him humbled. Further illustrating the rich world and culture of Omnitopia are interludes following a cast of equally interesting supporting characters: Rik, a family man who's given a rare chance to create his own piece of the virtual world; Delia, a reporter with a hidden agenda; and even Logan's former partner Paul Sorensen, who's using any means at his disposal to destroy Omnitopia.

Of course, Omnitopia is almost as much of a character as any of the humans. Duane goes out of her way to make the culture and players of the game realistic and diverse. Technological concerns are occasionally handwaved away--like a virtual reality device that somehow transmits scent and touch through the optic nerve--but for the most part, Omnitopia feels completely plausible. The better-than-Google culture of the business end of Omnitopia is a little unrealistic as well, but pleasantly so; it's refreshing to see a fictional company that's a legitimate "good guy."

What makes "Omnitopia" truly remarkable, however, is how little it feels like science fiction. It would be better to say that Omnitopia is more about a man struggling to keep his vision for his people and his creation in the face a world that isn't very receptive to idealism or positive intent. As Dev Logan says in the book, Omnitopia is about "hunting the things that have made humanity great in the past, and...the ones that will make it worth being human in the future." It's a testament to Duane's writing and characterization that such a line doesn't seem false or overstated, but a simple truth about what Dev Logan wants people to find in his virtual worlds.

In the end, "Omnitopia Dawn" is a great book, and great speculative fiction, not because it's flawless, but because of how well it rises above those flaws. It makes us want to believe that such a thing as Omnitopia might actually exist. It's a world that many readers might prefer to live in--one that might make us dare to dream, and dare to hope, much like Dev Logan would have us do. If that's not the mark of good speculative fiction, what is? Regardless, "Omnitopia Dawn" is a must-have book for all gamers, dreamers, and sci-fi lovers.

5-0 out of 5 stars terrific techno-thriller
By 2015, anyone who knows their name participates in multi-player on line games.The most popular of the interactive internet games is Dev Logan's Omnitopia.There are so many players; the game has surpassed TV and movies as the number one entertainment outlet in the world.Millions not just play, but prefer the reality of Omnitopia to their "real" existence.

Dev and his crew begin a major upgrade to his game system.However, while working on the expansion, he is stunned to learn his creation is alive.Whereas he has always dueled with unscrupulous hackers, elected officials with false morals, and unprincipled industrial espionage operatives, he never lost sight that it was only a game.Now it is more than a game as he tries to keep the ruthless immoral thugs from murdering or kidnapping his "offspring".

This is a terrific techno-thriller that uses the enthusiasm of game players to extract a near future in which on-line interactivity is the in thing.Although AI tales have starred frequently in books (Asimov) and movies (Spielberg), Omnitopia Dawn provides a fresh perspective due to a rotating 360 degree viewpoint.Fans will enjoy likable Dev's efforts to protect his child while also seeing how players, the expansion crew, and the devious look at Omnitopia.

Harriet Klausner
... Read more

3. A Wizard of Mars: The Ninth Book in the Young Wizards Series
by Diane Duane
Hardcover: 560 Pages (2010-04-12)
list price: US$18.00 -- used & new: US$10.89
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0152047700
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Young wizards Kit and Nita are faced with strange events when a life form from another era emerges on Mars. Though the Martians seem friendly, they have a plan that could change the shape of more than one world. As the shadow of interplanetary war stretches over both worlds, Kit and Nita must fight to master the strange and ancient synergy binding them to Mars and its last inhabitants. If they don’t succeed, the history that left Mars lifeless will repeat itself on Earth.

Amazon.com Review
Product Description
In the hotly anticipated ninth installment of the Young Wizards series, Kit and Nita become part of an elite team investigating the mysterious "message in a bottle," which holds the first clues to the secrets of the long-lost inhabitants of Mars. But not even wizardry can help them cope with the strange events that unfold when the "bottle" is uncorked and a life form from another era emerges.

Though the Martians seem friendly, they have a plan that could change the shape of more than one world. As the shadow of interplanetary war stretches over both worlds, Kit and Nita must fight to master the strange and ancient synergy binding them to Mars and its last inhabitants. If they don't succeed, the history that left Mars lifeless will repeat itself on Earth.

Amazon Exclusive: A Letter from Diane Duane, author of A Wizard of Mars

Dear Amazon Reader,

"What the heck...let's go to Mars!" That's what one of those little voices in the back of my head said some years back, when I was contemplating where I'd be taking the Young Wizards series after Wizards at War.

When you're a writer, you learn to live with these little voices. As a former psychiatric nurse, I know that they're just one more way that the creative urge expresses itself to help you get the work done--a friendly voice being something you're more likely to listen to than some vague, disembodied Spirit of Creativity. I treat these suggestions as if they came from one of the "shoulder angels" or "shoulder devils" you see in cartoons. When they pop up and whisper something, you can pay attention or you can brush them off, but the final choice is always yours.

This time I listened. Mars has turned up in the YW books in the past, but only as a bit player--Nita's sister Dairine stops off there briefly on her wizardly Ordeal, not wanting to pass by without visiting Olympus Mons, the biggest volcano in the solar system (and a must-see for alien tourists in our arm of the galaxy). Surely, I thought, the planet next door merited a little more attention from me than just that single mention. For not merely as an astronomy geek from childhood, but as someone who's spent a lot of time in and around science fiction, I've had Mars on my radar for a long time.

Many of the great names in the science fiction and fantasy fields--Wells and Heinlein and Bradbury and even C. S. Lewis--have been interested enough in Mars to "visit" there, each bringing along the best scientific knowledge of the moment, and his or her own particular vision of what the Red Planet meant to them and what it might eventually mean to humanity. Other writers--Edgar Rice Burroughs, particularly--have gone there packing less science and more romance. But regardless, Mars has usually seemed to elicit good things from those who visit there in literary mode: visions of beauty and of terror, the unexpected and the seriously strange.

And for me, the fascination with Mars itself became an issue, a question to be answered. Why does Mars command so much attention from both the scientific community and the general public? What is it with Mars, anyway? Specifically, why has it so often been where invaders come from? ("Invaders from Jupiter?" Nita says at one point. "Invaders from Venus? It just doesn’t sound right. But invaders from Mars...") Is this just the effect of much piled-up popular culture, or do Earth and Mars have something else going on? If so, what? And what if that long-buried issue should suddenly come up to be resolved?

That last one is the question I found myself dealing with as I wrote this book...and it was a whole lot of fun. In the process I got to nod "hello" to a lot of my illustrious forbears in the field who've left their literary footprints on the planet (or their name: a surprising number of craters on Mars have been named after science fiction writers). I also got to do some goofy things, which is a writer's prerogative as long as she's careful about it and doesn't disturb the main flow of story business: watch for a cameo by a well-known Martian of 1950s vintage). Most important, I got to push my characters into situations that challenged them in some very different ways from the usual ones, their personal dramas playing themselves out on an alien landscape that's a little less alien because they can see Earth from there.

And--as a happy side issue--I had help from NASA in scouting my locations for the main story events. The Mars Global Surveyor satellite completely mapped the surface of the Red Planet before its sad demise, and NASA's made that data available to anyone who wants it. So with the right software to process the data for you and create the imagery, you can seem to stand on the surface of Mars yourself, and take a look around.

So, all in all, Kit and Nita and I had a serious party in our stay on Mars. In A Wizard of Mars, the party's still going on. And we can't wait for you to join us there!

All the best,

Diane Duane

(Photo © Gary Jordan)

... Read more

Customer Reviews (13)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Martian Mystery
A Wizard of Mars (2010) is the nineth Fantasy novel in the Young Wizards series, following Wizards at War.The initial work in this seriers is So You Want To Be A Wizard.

In the previous volume, the Young Wizards gathered on the backside of the Moon.They tried various spells to repel the Pullulus without success.Then Roshaun called the power of his collar and beamed power toward the Pullulus.

In the excitement, Kit's dog Ponch vanished.Kit later learns that Ponch has become the canine equivaent of the One.Kit starts seeing some evidence of Ponch in other dogs and canine equivalents.

In this novel, Nita Callahan is a young wizard.She is a close friend of Kit.

Kit Rodriguez is a young wizard.He is a close friend of Nita.He still misses Ponch.

Dairine is the younger sister of Nita.She is also a wizard.She is still searching for Roshaun.

Carmela is Kit's next older sister.She is not a wizard, but has powers of her own.

Helena is Kit's eldest sister.She has been away at college, but is due home soon.Helena had a bad reaction to Kit's wizardry, believing that he was a minion of the Devil.

Tom Swale is a senior Wizard.His partner is Carl Romeo.

Mamvish is a high ranking wizard who looks like a dinosaur.She is the Powers' own Species Archivist.

In this story, Kit is again trying to fix the air conditioner in his classroom.Nothing is coming out the air vent except odd sounds and everybody is sweltering in the heat.A shutter is stuck because of bolts that are too tight to allow it to open.Kit is asking the bolts to back off a bit.

Just as cool air starts to come out the vent, Mr. Machiavelli comments on the doodles in Kit's notebook.Kit has been spending a lot of time lately on Mars and has drawn a sketch of Dejah Thoris while convincing the air conditioner to loosen up.Mr. Mack suggests that the drawing has little to do with the Korean War and asks Kit about the historical significance of the thirty-eighth parallel.

At the end of the class, Mr. Mack gives back the graded exam papers to everyone except Kit.He asks Kit to remain after class.When everyone else has left, Mr. Mack produces his exam with a 99% grade.

Kit had misspelled Pyongyang, but otheriwse had a perfect exam.The teacher gives it to him privately to preclude such aspersions as teacher's pet.Then they talk about Burrough's Mars and other topics.

As he leaves the school, Kit spots Raoul leaning casually against a locker.Kit waves the exam in Raoul's face.They both started jumping up and down chanting "nine-ty-nine, nine-ty-nine".

After Raoul departs with his mother, Kit checks his wizard manual for new messages.It has one line of text glowing fiercely blue and pulsing.His wizard friends had found a bottle on Mars.

Meanwhile, Nita is waiting for Kit at Tom's house.She is sitting on the flat stones near the koi pond practicing prevision, but is not doing it quite right.The koi are critiquing her technique.Even Tom points out that her timing sucks.

Then Nita gets a message saying than Mamvish has come to Earth.When she mentions Mamvish's arrival to Tom, he presents her with a heavy bag of tomatoes.Nita staggers home with the bag.

She plops the bag into the drainer in the kitchen and calls for her father.Carmela informs her that he is somewhere out back.Nita goes into the living room to see what Carmela is doing.

Carmela is reprograming their TV.It seems that Helena is coming home early, so Carmela doesn't want to watch alien stations on her own TV since that might freak out her sister.She now has the Callahan set bringing in sharp pictures from thousands of alien channels.

They start talking about Kit spending so much time on Mars and Nita offers to take Carmela to the planet.But first she takes Carmela to Gili Motang to meet her friends.She also takes the bag of tomatoes.

Mamvish is trying to convince the Komodo dragons to resettle on another planet, but not having much luck.Kit and his friends are observing Mamvish as she has a hissy fit over the foolish dragons.Then Nita arrives and soon learns that Mamvish loves tomatoes.

Mamvish heads for Mars with Kit and his friends.There Kit removes the bottle -- really a oblate green object -- from a stone.It obviously has something going on within it, but does nothing for a while.Then it sends flaring beams to four locations.

When Nita and Carmela get to Mars, Kit has gone elsewhere to check out the other locations.Nita soon finds where he has gone, but that site is blocked from transport wizardry.Kit and his friends are having some strange experiences there.

Nita then goes to Wellakh to find her sister.Dairine is wearling Roshaun's collar and taking lessons from Roshaun's father on how to handle suns.Dairine convinces Nita that Roshaun is not dead, but merely missing.

This tale concerns the past inhabitants of Mars and their resurrection from the dead into the present.Their appearance and environment are tailored to the thoughts of the observer, so one appears much like Dejeh Thoris.When Nita finally arrives, she sees something quite different.

The author dedicates this work to other authors who have written about Mars, from Burroughs to Robinson.She even has a few classic scenes in her novel.But her story manages to have an entirely different approach than previous tales.

This story wraps up the mystery of Mars, but leaves Roshaun's fate undetermined.The next installment should resolve this issue.Read and enjoy!

Highly recommended for Duane fans and for anyone else who enjoys tales of high wizardry, alien cultures, and persevering young adults.

-Arthur W. Jordin

5-0 out of 5 stars A great, fun read
If you're a fan of the Young Wizards series, you will find this book a worthy successor to the series so far. The story picks up a couple months after Wizards at War, as everyone is trying to pick up the pieces after the craziness of the dark matter attack. I read the whole thing in an afternoon. I literally couldn't put it down until I finished.

Now when does the next book come out?

4-0 out of 5 stars Long awaited! but still some unanswered questions left
I think it's possible I'm growing too old for these novels, as I didn't enjoy this one as much as the other novels in the series. It's also possible that it's because in this book, it was the first time they didn't have a real face off with the lone power. Their adversaries are more subtley under the lone power's thumb than in the past. I personally miss the full on evil confrontation. The format of this book also had me missing kit and nita interaction, i feel like it was a necessity for the story she told,but you'll miss them really getting to work together, as in this it's really an every other chapter tells a different part kind of story until the very end. It's also about 100 pages too long; there were some very interesting parts, however there were also really boring parts that dragged with the detail. I did enjoy that some old characters were featured in this book, such as darryl and ronan, and srii the whale, however I felt it was because we didn't get to see our partners working together, so it was consolation. For those who've wondered about Roshoun or however you spell his name, we'll have to keep waiting a few more years to find out what happened there....and on a final note, i think nikita fans will be a bit more hopeful with this book! oh and i will say that in the end of this book there's actually a wrap up of the lessons learned, which is very elementary school, kinda like an in case you missed it, this was what you were supposed to get, which i don't really remember in the others. Either way, if you've read the other novels, read this one too for good measure, but i just don't think it was as good as some of the others

5-0 out of 5 stars great book, bad editing
OK, I just have to say that this is my favorite series ever and I'd recommend it to anybody.This book probably isn't the strongest one in the series- numbers 1, 2, and 8 are my favorites- but it's still very much worth reading.We get to see more of some old characters- S'reee, Darryl, and Ronan- and some more new personalities are added to the mix, which serves to shake things up a bit.A good portion of this installment takes place on Mars, which gives the author a lot of creative breathing room with which to describle the landscape and such.As always, her descriptions are vivid and eloquent.

One of the things I like the best about this series is the relationship between Kit and Nita, and watching it progress.Unlike so many other books with a male and female lead, Duane manages to avoid following the conventions that are nearly omniprescent in teen literature.She doesn't rely on thinly veiled romantic tension to keep the plot moving, neither of the leads wastes much time worrying about the other's opinion of them, and there are no petty fights followed by tearful reconcilliations.Also, thank God, Nita is not a brainless, fretting, eternally-in-need-of-rescue herione and Kit is not an obnoxios yet sexy hero with many sercrets. (Nobody acts like that! WHY do all teen romances persist in using those characters?! THEY'RE OBNOXIOUS!)Also as per the norm for Duane, she ends with a battle scene that ranks among, like, the top ten most epic battle scenes ever.And at the very end of the book, we see it moving in a direction that has been hinted at for basically the whole series (three guesses what.).My reaction when I finished it was to forcibly remove my father from the computer so that I could Google for information on the next one, because it leaves itself open for a sequel.

Now, onto my complaints: First of all, this book focuses almost entierly on Nita and Kit, so there is a distinct lack of Dairine/Roshaun!But that's just my personal peeve; it didn't detract from the story at all.More importantly, it honestly feels like this book wasn't edited at all.The other books have exhibited this problem also- the occasional typo or descrepancy- but it was never this bad!Some of the dialogue just flat out doesn't make sense.Most annoying of all, there are some huge discrepancies in the characters' ages.Three books ago, and the span of less than a year in "book time" Carmela was 15.In this book, they're talking like she's about ready to go off to college when she should only be 16 at the oldest.More noticeable, and far more offsetting, is Dairine's age.In this book, they make a big deal out of her being 11.Unless she has somehow managed to stay the same age since book 1 while the rest of the cast aged 2 years, there's simply no way to justify that.Plus, come on, she does not act like an 11 year old!! This really bugs me and I have no idea what the author's going to do about it.

But all in all, a great book! Read it! Read them all! And then read them several times more!!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars She's done it again!
I have ALWAYS been a HUGE fan of Diane's work. Especially the Young Wizard's series. I would greatly recommend this to any fan of mythical fantasy. In this book, Diane uses an excellent combination of factual evidence, and alien-like beliefs to form a new kind of fantasy, one of a world few would've imagined. A world of ancient Mars. The ancient world of Mars which Kit and Nita awaken, has many surprises in store. Personally, I think this is probably the best work Diane has written since the original So You Want to be a Wizard. ... Read more

4. To Visit the Queen (Cat Novel)
by Diane Duane
Paperback: 368 Pages (1999-04-01)
list price: US$18.99 -- used & new: US$14.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0446673188
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Rhiow, Urruah, and Arhu, the wizard cats are summoned to London to deal with a crisis in the very fabric of time. Aided by a 15-year-old Arthur Conan Doyle, the feline heroes must save the life of Queen Victoria, every Queen Victoria in every universe, and find the forgotten magic needed to restore the correct course of time... before they cease to exist.Amazon.com Review
"A purr at the right time can do wonders," says Rhiow, thefurry, black heroine of To Visit the Queen,. Diane Duane'smettlesome cats can work wonders with more than their purring: they'rewizards, capable of casting spells, walking on air, traveling throughspace and time, and speaking to humans--if they choose to. In thissequel to the bestselling The Book of Night withMoon, Rhiow and her team are called in to troubleshoot amalfunctioning magical portal in the London underground. Gradually,they unravel a conspiracy that threatens to twist their reality into anightmarish alternate history--one in which Victorian England gets aboost from future science and uses nuclear technology to terrorize theworld. This perfidious design rests upon the assassination of QueenVictoria, and it's up to Rhiow, Arhu, Urruah, and the London cats tosave the queen.

Duane has earned an enormous following with herstories of the unending battle between the evil Lone Power and theforces of life, here championed by Rhiow and the other wizardcats. Although her stories are usually lively reads, in To Visitthe Queen, Duane takes a long time to build up to the action andburdens the narrative with large lumps of magic terminology that'smore than reminiscent of computer programs or mathematicaltheorems. But there's a lot of fun to be had from thewheels-within-wheels universes going awry, in spotting tidbits ofhistory, and in following the chain of events as the traitor in thepride reveals its claws. --Blaise Selby ... Read more

Customer Reviews (19)

4-0 out of 5 stars same book as "On Her Majesty's Wizardly Service"
Very good book!I had looked forward to it for a long time.From Ms. Duane's website, I'd gotten the impression that it was the third book after "Book of Night with Moon" and "On Her Majesty's Wizardly Service".Have you ever saved an anticipated book carefully for the perfect time, only to open it up and discover that you've already read it? These are the same book under different titles, unfortunately.Apart from that, I recommend it.

4-0 out of 5 stars "Book of Night with Moon" was better, but this is still good
New York City as a setting was more appealing to me than Britain.I suspect Duane has spent more time in NYC and can make the place more vivid than London as well.Still, the book is entertaining and definitely worth reading even if you haven't read the first book in the series.

"To Visit the Queen"will stand alone from "Book of Night with Moon", but I believe reading the two books in order is a better option.

4-0 out of 5 stars A cat may look at a queen...but can it save her?
All Duane's fantasy--the "Tale of the Five," the "Young Wizards" series which takes place in the same Universe as this book and its prequel--turns on the unending battle between the Powers That Be (the forces of life, or what a Star Wars fan might call "the Light Side") and the Lone Power (the renegade god whom Christians term "the Devil"), each aided by its own mortal adherents and sometimes willing, sometimes unaware pawns.In this story, feline wizard and Worldgate technician Rhiow and the survivors of her team--opera-loving tom Urruah and visionary kitten Arhu--must travel to London to try to repair a malfunctioning gate (cats, unlike humans, can both see and manipulate the "strings" that make the gates work).Gradually they discover that an alternate England has been brought into being through the scheming of the Lone Power, and threatens to overwhelm their own reality and end all life on Earth.To prevent it from doing so, they must forestall the assassination of the alternate Queen Victoria in her very bed--and the way they do it could only be accomplished by cats.

As always seems to be true in Duane's work, there are touches of tragedy--the fate of the gallant London teamleader Huff and his beloved mate Auhlae may make you reach for the Kleenex box.But her alternate England is splendidly imagined, and there are light moments as well, like Rhiow's reflections on the possibility of finding a mate for her widowed human, Mike.Saurian wizard Ith reappears and performs gallantly, and his and the cats' interaction with a young Arthur Conan Doyle is charming.Now, Diane, when can we hope to see another adventure of Rhiow and her team?

5-0 out of 5 stars ailurophiles will love it!
I just finished reading the book about 10 minutes ago!What a great sequel to "Night With Moon"... it carries forward some of the unresolved feelings and events from the first book, and leaves you feeling a bit easier about them.I do disagree with some of the other reviews that found this book too drawn-out or some of the plot points contrived.The book built up slowly but steadily, not with as much action as "Night With Moon" but with more detective work on the part of Rhiow, her team, and their new allies -- more the literary equivalent of a good suspense movie than an action-hero one. And also unlike some other reviews, I didn't think the battle with the Lone One was "tacked on" or unnecessary. In fact, it was almost inevitable after the cats foil Her plans for Queen Victoria.Think about it -- if you were a selfish, vindictive Power who was absolutely sure you were going to win, and suddenly your scheme was stopped in its tracks, wouldn't you be furious and decide to rid yourself of the "obstacles" once and for all?The book even leaves room for another sequel (maybe the further adventures of Arhu and Siffha'h?) and more bliss for cat lovers. I'll be keeping my figurative whiskers attuned for it!

5-0 out of 5 stars A Follow-up book from Night With Moon
A wonderful follow-up to the fabulous Night With Moon. I wondered at the time how Duane was going to be able to top Night With Moon. She does an excellent job of surpassing herself & the ending of "To Visit The Queen" was surprising. There are sad moments in this one, which make it a slightly more introspective book than the other title, but it has equally rapid plot & strong action plotlines. I loved seeing Arthur Conan Doyle as well. Wouldn't he love to still be starring in our literary achievements? :) ... Read more

5. Deep Wizardry (digest): The Second Book in the Young Wizards Series
by Diane Duane
Paperback: 384 Pages (2003-09-01)
list price: US$6.95 -- used & new: US$1.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0152049428
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Something stopped Nita's hand as it ran along the bookshelf. She looked and found that one of the books had a loose thread at the top of its spine. It was one of those So You Want to Be a . . . books, a series on careers. So You Want to Be a Pilot, and a Scientist . . . a Writer. But his one said, So You Want to Be a Wizard.

I don't belive this, Nina thought. She shut the book and stood there holding it in
her hand, confused, amazed, suspicious--and delighted. If it was a joke, it was a great one. If it wasn't . . . ?
... Read more

Customer Reviews (79)

5-0 out of 5 stars Deep Wizardry
While marketed as a "Young Adult" series, Diane Duane's Young Wizards series is great for all ages.I started reading them in my 20s and I still enjoy the series even into my late 30s.

Very much superior to "other" books about young wizards, Diane Duane's wizardly universe is filled with wonder and magic, but no quick fixes...all wizardry here carries a price!Duane sets up a system of rules, making wizardry in her world more believable in the process.You dont just wave a wand and say something in faux latin, you have to LEARN how to do magic, effort is required.I also like that ANYONE can be a wizard, not just those lucky enough to be born with a "gift".

All of this is just the window dressing, so to speak.The real enjoyment of this series is getting to know Nita and Kit, and all of the other wonderful characters.If I have one complaint, is that these characters do not seem to age as the series progresses.I sincerely hope that Nita and Kit are allowed to grow up a bit going forward...

Deep Wizardry is probably my favorite in the series, mainly just for one scene...the "coming out" of Nita and Kit to Nita's parents.You have to read it for yourself, I wont spoil it, but I have to say...VERY VERY few books have moved me to tears...the sheer beauty of the scene Diane Duane writes, the reactions of the characters...all of it FELT very real while reading it, and even now in remembrance it still moves me.

I would recommend reading "So you want to be a Wizard" first, but unfortunately, the Kindle version is not available yet.Even so, I cant recommend this book highly enough to anyone and everyone who enjoys a good story that is very well written.

4-0 out of 5 stars Parents should read before giving to preteen readers
I just finished this book and am racing to catch up to my daughter, who is on Book 4.She is ten and loved the Harry Potter series, so when she found this in the library we thought it would be great.

It IS great -- these are fabulous, exciting yet thoughtful books, which she loves now and will get even more out of when she rereads them in a few years (which I'm sure she will).But.Unlike Harry Potter or Percy Jackson, these are a little less innocent sex-wise.In this book, there is a lot of indirect wondering about what exactly Nit and Kit are doing off alone together so much, which comes to a head when Nit's mother asks her if she and Kit are "messing around," to which Nit replies, shocked, "You mean like having sex?!"

It's a short scene, and good material for older teens, as it ends with Nit assuring her mother she would come talk to her before she "did anything like that."But I don't think I would have let me daughter read them yet if I had known it was in there -- first because I'd rather she just not contemplate 13 year olds having sex, and second because it makes me wonder what is in the later books.Our local library may need to be "out" of books five and on for a few years.

5-0 out of 5 stars Must I Accept the Barren Gift?
The Song of the Twelve:a powerful wizardry of the Sea, going back to the time when whales made their choice between Life and Death.The Lone Power met with defeat on that day.Every now and then, when trouble stirs again, the whales must descend into the deep place where It is bound and reenact that ancient Song; they must make the Lone One remember the power of sacrifice.

Trouble has been stirring indeed since before that night when the Lone One walked in Manhattan, and whatever peace Nita and Kit brought the land doesn't seem to extend to the waters.The whales must perform the Song again.Unfortunately, their Senior has been killed--his apprentice needs help that Kit and Nita are in the best position to give.Will they commit themselves to the Song and its dangers?

Of course.They're wizards.How could they not?

I can't come up with words for this book.It's shelved with children's books, but it is ageless.Of the original trilogy, themselves the best of the excellent Young Wizards series, this is the most mature, the darkest, and the strongest by so many degrees.The stakes are the same as they usually are:life and death.And love, of course.But only in _Deep Wizardry_ do Nita and Kit have so much time to reflect on the prices they may be asked to pay.There is no other character quite like Ed, the Pale Slayer, unfallen Destroyer--a colder Master than the Lone One could hope to be.Sacrifice is never more personal.And if you were to read only one Young Wizards book in your lifetime, it must be this one, for this one encapsulates the cost of the struggle against Death and all that it is worth.

Read it.I have, many times, and I will read it again and again for all the sorrow, and all the joy.

5-0 out of 5 stars ♦ LOVE IT ♦
Wow I absolutely love this book!!! I definately like this series ALOT better than the Harry Potter series(and i absolutely love Harry Potter)!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Courtesy of Teens Read Too
I read this book for the first time while waiting for the release of the fourth Harry Potter book, looking for something to fill the empty space. To my surprise, I found a book that I would argue is at least as good as Harry Potter--and perhaps better.

The second book in Diane Duane's YOUNG WIZARDS series starts with middle school friends, Nita and Kit, on vacation together with Nita's family at the beach. They think it's going to be just another summer, but they couldn't be more mistaken. Nita and Kit are both wizards, and the forces of evil don't take vacations. The job of wizards is to fight the Lone Power, the one who created death and continually attempts to trick people into accepting it. Wizards work with spells learned from their wizards' manuals, and the use of the Speech, a language that all things, animate or inanimate, understand.

When Nita and Kit are summoned to help a whale wizard who's been wounded by whalers, they find out that things have not been going well in the Sea, and that if the wizards don't do something about it soon, the problems may spread to land in the form of earthquakes and tidal waves. The solution is to perform the Song of the Twelve in order to bind the Lone Power and keep It from wreaking havoc on the east coast. And in the case of these two young wizards, they have to do all this while keeping their powers secret from their parents, who are beginning to wonder what they spend their days doing.

The main characters are compelling, but the supporting cast is just as strong, consisting of equal numbers of whales and humans. Duane's portrayal of life under the sea, and the ways that humans can unknowingly affect it, is insightful and true. The tension rises throughout the story, so that every scene is more intense than the next.

I must have read this book ten times, and every time I get to the ending, I'm so caught up in it that I can't put it down until I'm done. The language of the story itself is beautifully descriptive, not just of the underwater world, but also of the characters' emotions. A story about friendship, duty, and sacrifice whose truth and beauty still amaze me, more than six years down the road.

Reviewed by:Candace Cunard ... Read more

6. High Wizardry (digest): The Third Book in the Young Wizards Series
by Diane Duane
Paperback: 368 Pages (2003-10-01)
list price: US$6.95 -- used & new: US$0.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 015204941X
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Young wizards Nita and Kit face their most terrifying challenge yet: Nita's little sister, Dairine. Not only is Dairine far too smart for a ten-year-old, she also has recenlty become a wizard, and worse yet, a wizard with almost limitless power. When Dairine's computerized wizard's manual glibly sends her off on her novice adventure--her Ordeal--Kit and Nita end up chasing her across the galaxy, trying to catch up with Dairine before she gets into trouble so deep that not even her brains can resuce her.
Amazon.com Review
Don't take brilliant, shrewd Dairine Callahan for just anybratty younger sibling. Impatient for adventure, knowledge, andrecognition, she finds her sister Nita's wizardry manual and reads theOath aloud. Disappointingly, nothing happens. But when her family'snew computer arrives, Dairene discovers more than the standard issuesystem software on it and launches herself on a reckless,universe-wide, high-voltage magical conflict with the LonePower. Diane Duane's storytelling is skillfully mythic and wittilyreferential; Dairine's discovery and shaping of a new form of life iswondrous. For maximum enjoyment, read So You Want To Be AWizard and DeepWizardry first. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (54)

5-0 out of 5 stars What your daughter SHOULD be reading instead of "Twilight."
** This review contains minor spoilers. **

Don't let the fact that this is young adult sci-fi/fantasy fool you - Diane Duane's Young Wizards series is beautifully written and vastly imaginative. Although "High Wizardry" is the third installment, reading the first two is not necessary to enjoy it, although that will make beginning appear somewhat confusing. Originally meant to conclude a trilogy (Duane has since written more), "High Wizardry" has a real epic feel to it as its young protagonist, eleven-year-old Star Wars fan Dairine Callahan, steps out of a museum restroom onto Mars, and ends up racing across galaxies with an ancient evil in hot pursuit, accompanied only by her magic computer and new powers she barely knows how to use.

The setting is easily one of the most varied and original I ever have come across in speculative fiction. The story begins in the suburbs of New York City and ends on a desolate planet in a galaxy forty trillion light-years away. Definitely the most memorable location is a vividly detailed interstellar "airport," where all manner of non-humanoids arrive and depart via a wormhole-like transport system. The action then swiftly picks up again, as the real chase begins and Dairine's jumps from one fantastic realm to another rather resemble a surreal vacation slideshow. Her ultimate arrival on a planet composed of layers of silicone launches what is essentially a discourse on life, death, evolution, and entropy. This is cleverly disguised, however, as a wondrous and dangerous encounter with a group of newborn AI's who merely wish to help the universe by forcing it to stop expanding. Of course, the real evil is precisely this expansion and "slowing down" of the cosmos, first set into motion at the very beginning of time by the fallen angel known as the Lone One, whose name is legion throughout creation. Every sentient race, including humanity, has long lamented its decision to accept his "gift" of death, but now, for the first time, a species might say no. A great argument eons in the making is about to begin, and Dairine is right in the middle. (Another unforgettable moment: someone's annoying pet turns out to be a tall, beautiful goddess in jeans, holding a blazing sword.)

A seamless blend of fantasy and science fiction, "High Wizardry" feels like a cross between "Paradise Lost" and Dan Simmons's "Hyperion." Its main characters are primarily children, aliens, angels, and demigods, giving the novel an aura of innocence, hope, and wonder that contrasts poignantly with its grand evocations of war in Heaven and the cold immensity of the universe. It's optimistic without being sentimental: at the end of the day, there is good in everyone and even the worst sinner can go home again. Now why is it that tripe like "Twilight" is adored by the masses while talented authors like Diane Duane remain largely unknown? Instead of giving your thirteen-year-old daughter Stephenie Meyer's drivel for Christmas, I strongly recommend you introduce her Dairine, Nita, and Kit instead. (Note: I disagree with the 9-12 age range given for these books. I would say 11-14. They're just too dense for younger readers.)

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful writing!
As a person interested in fantasy and anything of a mystical/magical nature I found this book particularly intriguing.It is loaded with action from page one to the last page and you just cannot put the book down (I read until 4 a.m.).

Even though the plot is way-out-there-fantasy there is a certain plausibility in the nature of the story. This is the case in the previous two books listed below:

So You Want to Be a Wizard (digest): The First Book in the Young Wizards Series

Deep Wizardry (digest): The Second Book in the Young Wizards Series

1-0 out of 5 stars Shallow magic
This installment in the Young Wizards Seris was an imense disappointment. There was a number of reasons for this.

Firstly Dairane did not make a good viewpoint character, and she did not change or develop in any way. She starts as an overconfident brat and ends that way as well. Int the long run making her come to terms with not becoming a wizard would have made for a much more interesting character then what we got, the Super Brat who can take on the Lone power head on and win.

In this book magic does not have a price, Even Nita and Kit approach things like pulp action heros rather then the children they are. There is no fear, no doubt that they will win, and no price to be paid at the end.

By the end of the book the battle against entropy, which cannot be won, has been won. leaving behind nothing but shadows of evil.

This time I'm not rushing to get to the next book, They have defeated the main event, what trouble could the shadows cause?

There was nothing to make me keep reading here, no suspense, no danger, Nothing more then pulp action. And in the end I found myself pulled out of the world of the story. My suspension of disbelief broken as the very laws of the Universe that Duane took pains to create were undone in a single chapter.

5-0 out of 5 stars Diane Duane
The first in this series than moves outside Diane Duane's familiar home ground-- it moves far outside that ground (beyond the red-shift limit of the universe.) More importantly, it is a great book about being sisters, about the border of friendship and romance, and about finding one's place in the world.

4-0 out of 5 stars Another great read
Once I finished "Deep Wizardry", I was desperate to know what would happen with Dairine, Nita's little sister and Diane Duane didn't disappoint! ... Read more

7. Wizards at War: The Eighth Book in the Young Wizards Series
by Diane Duane
Mass Market Paperback: 551 Pages (2007-06-01)
list price: US$6.95 -- used & new: US$1.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0152052232
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Nita and Kit return from their wizardly holiday looking forward to getting back to their everyday routine. But there's trouble brewing. A strange darkness of the mind and heart is about to befall the older wizards of the world, stealing away their power. Soon, the young wizards find themselves forced to defend wizards and nonwizards alike against an invasion of a kind they've never imagined.
For the first time in millenia, the wizards must go to war. . . .
... Read more

Customer Reviews (21)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book!
This whole series is excellent reading.At first, I got the book so that I would not have to concentrate too hard, i.e. due to it being a children's book.I could not put it down!If you liked Harry Potter, you will like the Wizards series...but, be aware it is only the subject matter that is the same!

4-0 out of 5 stars Saving the Universe once again
Duane's young teenage wizards, Nita Callahan and Kit Rodriguez, are gradually developing into the foremost champions of the Powers That Be, having battled the Lone Power--Christianity's Devil--seven times in various settings.In this volume of their adventures they face their greatest challenge yet."Dark matter"--the mysterious substance (if it is one) that scientists have been searching for for at least a century and are suddenly beginning to find in unexpected quantities--is creating a nasty kink in the Universe: wherever it appears, space is expanding thousands of times faster than it should.Owing to the semi-scientific nature of magic in Duane's reality, this means that magic itself is breaking down, and wizards of all species who are past "latency"--what humans call adolescence--are in danger of not only losing their powers but losing their belief that magic ever worked at all.This in turn will cause ethical changes and personality shifts to occur wholesale and matters of "the heart and spirit" to go by the board, and long before the planets and their suns are swallowed by the encroaching darkness, civilizations themselves will fall in ruins.The only chance for sentiency in general is the youngest, upcoming generation of wizards, including Nita and Kit, who must seek out "the Hesper"--a being or object that is capable of somehow reversing the process.And as it turns out, Kit's peculiarly gifted dog Ponch is the key to finding it.Helped by Nita's sister Dairine and her living computer Spot (a member of a species called "mobiles" whom Dairine more or less created while on her Ordeal), the young Irishman Ronan Nolan (first encountered in A Wizard Abroad) whose body is shared by the One's Champion, and three offworld wizard-visitors--Filif, a sentient tree; Roshaun, the heir to the throne of a planet ravaged by solar flares; and Sker'ret, a member of the family of intelligent centipedes who manage the worldgating facility used by wizards (and others) from the entire Local Group of galaxies--the trio set off through a succession of countless worlds in search of the one where the Hesper exists.

Although at first there's some doubt of the fact--"something different from [its] usual pattern of attack is going on"--it soon becomes clear that the Lone Power is once again up to its old tricks, but on what may be a vaster scale than ever.The key to defeating it lies in a species of intelligent bugs, the Yaldiv, who dominate the planet Rashav and are themselves, down to the last grub, living avatars of the Dark One.The Hesper, it turns out, is "a 'bright' version of the Lone Power," latent within one of them, who must be made aware of what it is and helped to come to its full power.A thrilling confrontation between the Power and Its young foes is only part of a multi-pronged attempt at fixing what's wrong, including a wild battle of blasters versus magic in the gating terminal and a mass resistance by Earth's young wizards against the dark matter bearing down on their Sun.As often happens in Duane's books, the quest is not without its casualties, emotional and physical, and Dairine particularly must face a tragedy that may outdo even her mother's recent death.This is not a leisurely read, but it's a compulsive one: even if you're not familiar with the parameters of the Young Wizards series (and this is definitely not the best book to begin it with, if only because of all the backstory you'll miss), you'll be sucked into the tension of the plot, which Duane manages to maintain for over 500 pages.The magic here is very technical, and nothing like that of Harry Potter, yet Potter fans may well find that Duane's books are a natural next step in their discovery of fantasy series with an epic sweep--and a certain allegorical feel best equalled in C. S. Lewis's Narnia.And the incorporation of science-fictional elements such as the many hundreds of other species that also know and use magic is a bonus that Duane handles with a skill no other author I know can manage.My one puzzlement is why, if (as at one point they do) the wizards of Earth are able to "[stop] a small southeast Asian 'bush war' from breaking out," they haven't also stopped other wars in the past.The author will have some distance to go in order to exceed what she's done here.

5-0 out of 5 stars The YW series is great!
So, I've been reading Diane Duane's book for a year or so and I really like them. I loved this one because old characters and new characters are meshed together. Plus, Carmela is really funny! The only thing with these books are...having patience to wait for the next book to come out. I've been waiting for a while for WoM. Yeah...

4-0 out of 5 stars The Universe will End soon ... unless the Young wizards can stop it.

Unlike Previous young wizards books this one picks up hours after the previous one, and for that reason can't stand alone. So If you haven't read Wizards Holiday make sure you do before looking at this book.

While the story is very good I did find a few stylstic issues here and there such as awkward and confusiong transitions of point of view character, sometimes in midsentence. But then what do you expect with so many characters using telepathy.

All three major characters have important things happen to them which makes the ending kind of choppy as we keep shifiting between them. Which was a little annoying as was the try and try again ending where Higer powers appear and disipate several times in the space of two chapters.

Unlike in previous books the magic is becoming unreliable and quite a few spells fail to work entierly. This is an interesting twists but seems to get a little over done by the ending, when two successive assults against the dark powers fail dismally within a few pages of each-other.

Quite a number of loose ends are left behind for the next book as well, making it a must read.

4-0 out of 5 stars wizards at war
The eighth book of the Young Wizards series is as exciting as the other seven. The story continues from #7 with the visiting wizards still on Earth and the impending threat from the Lone One. Nita and Kit and the other young wizards are forced to find solutions as the senior wizards are less able to assist. I found this book especially fun because we are reunited with characters from preceding books. Earth is saved, of course, but the solution was surprise. Interesting character developments, too.
A great read. ... Read more

8. The Wizard's Dilemma (digest): The Fifth Book in the Young Wizards Series
by Diane Duane
Paperback: 432 Pages (2005-10-01)
list price: US$6.95 -- used & new: US$1.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 015205491X
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

Not everything can be fixed with magic--young wizards Kit and Nita are having such a tough time coping with adolescence, they go their separate ways. But then Nita gets some bad news: Her mother has cancer, and it may be incurable--by medical or magical means.
Amazon.com Review
The fifth title in Diane Duane's Young Wizards series delves deeper into an emotional landscape than any of her previous books (So You Want to Be a Wizard, Deep Wizardry, High Wizardry, and A Wizard Abroad). For the first time ever, friends and wizard partners Nita and Kit seem to be having trouble communicating. They argue over a spell to clean up the pollution in New York's Jones Inlet, and from that point on, they can't connect on anything. Is it adolescence that's tearing them apart or something more profound? Meanwhile, Nita and her family are stunned to discover that her mother has cancer, and there's a possibility that nothing--not surgery, not even wizardry--can fight it. Nita refuses to let her mom go down without a fight, however, and soon she's on a mission that brings her face-to-face with the Lone Power, source of all death in the universe--Nita's worst enemy, and possibly her only hope.

Impressive in its scope, The Wizard's Dilemma, like all the titles in Duane's series, is packed with an intriguing combination of technology and magic that fans of fantasy, science fiction, technology, and even Christian literature will find absolutely gripping. Nita is a complex character, as befits her status as a teenager, not to mention a wizard. Her confusion and self-doubt will be painfully believable to every reader. There are no simple answers in this remarkably philosophical novel. (Ages 12 and older) --Emilie Coulter ... Read more

Customer Reviews (50)

5-0 out of 5 stars Nita growing up
I have long enjoyed the guilty pleasure of "young adult" fantasy fiction, and have recently discovered Diane Duane's work.The themes and her take on how magic works, as well as it's place in the world have been very interesting and original.

I have felt somewhat irritated by the attitude of Nita's parents, particularly her mother, who has appeared particularly obtuse, although I try to give authors leeway to create characters however they see fit.In this book, however, Nita's mother really took center stage, and blossomed.I think Nita began to see her more fully as a three-dimensional human being. She also had to take on a more supportive role for her father, something I found myself having to do during my mother's final illness when my father unexpectly needed much more help than I ever thought he would.

I almost never give a "five star" or top rating for anything, but I think this book deserves it.For those who think it is "too slow," the ending surely had enough action for me!For those who think it has turned "dark," they need to review the other books!Yes, we are dealing with the death of a parent, but is that any darker than the end of the world, self sacrifice or the subversion of a new species?

In the end, it was Nita's mother who was the heroine, who saw things clearly for what they were, and who made the choice of her own destiny, which brought me to tears.The comment that mothers start out by carrying children within themselves, but children end up carrying their mothers within them was so very profound, and something I had never thought of before -- I have been pondering it ever since.Goes to show you that even though it is "young adult" fiction, even "mature adults" (we're boomers, we never get "old") can learn and meditate.

2-0 out of 5 stars It's ok...
This book isn't that good. Maybe I've just grown up in a technology-based society or something, but I thought the book was too slow. If I had known how meandering it was, I wouldn't have bought this book.

My advice-if you read the first book and liked it, don't ruin it by reading the rest of the series.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good Once it got started
Finally, after two dismal installments, the Young Wizards series is back on track. We are back to what the first two books did so well, a very interesting presentation of magice.

And imprtantly Magic with a price. There is a lot in thsi story to get engaged with, and some real character development. At the end of the day there have been major perminent chagnes. This is a good thing.

My only criticism is that the first 100 pages or so seems to be entirely concerned with subplots. The main plot doesn't really start until page 120 or so. Sure there are a few earlier hints but they are so subtle that you won't notice them unless you already know the plot.

Everything did tie in at the end but it could have been sequenced a little better. I'm still giving it four starts though, as it is just so much better then the last two.

5-0 out of 5 stars Powerful. Very powerful.
For the most part, I think that the first three Young Wizards books are the best, and while the rest are certainly good and certainly worth reading, they aren't quite AS good. But, of course, I must make exception for THE WIZARD'S DILEMMA, possibly the most powerfully emotional book of the series.

A lot of things in Nita's life are broken, and she's not sure how to fix them. Her wizarding partnership/friendship with Kit Rodriguez, for one thing. And worst of all, her mother has just been diagnosed with cancer.

Nita, desperate to find a way to cure her mother using wizardry, is practicing altering the cores of alternate universes, presumably so she can, when the time comes, alter the core of her mother's body to reject the cancer. (If you feel lost already, you might want to pay attention as you read -- Duane has a habit of slipping in multiple abstract concepts and then referring to them over and over again throughout her novels.) But she knows she only has a very slim chance of doing this perfectly, and if she doesn't, her mother will die...

But then the Lone Power, creator of death, enemy of the One and all wizards, offers her a bargain. Strike a deal with him -- and lose her wizardry in the process -- or allow the cancer to kill her mother.

I must say, this book is almost as good (if not as good) as the third, HIGH WIZARDRY, which was my favorite. Nita is a very realistic character, and the ending -- which takes place inside Nita's mother's body -- is one of the most powerful and emotional that Duane has ever written.

Let applause be given where it is due. This is an amazing book.

Rating: Very Good

5-0 out of 5 stars Touching and Honest
Duane Duane undertakes a difficult subject in The Wizard's Dilemma.Nita Callahan's mother is seriously ill with cancer, and it is very likely that she won't survive.At the same time here relationship with Kit has become strained and, in many ways, Nita is on her own and desperately wants to fix what's broken.

Although this story is couched in the terms of a wizard who can't find the spell that will make everything right, the helplessness Nita experiences is something that everyone who has suffered the death of a loved one goes through.Kit is busy researching Ponch's sudden ability to wonder the universes and only finds out about Nita's mom late in the book.And Dairine has the wrong kind of skills to help.

Nita does everything she can, even undertaking extra training to learn how to manage the difficult task of convincing hungry cells to change their nature.Yet in the final analysis it is just Nita against the Lone Power.It takes intervention from an unexpected direction to grasp even a small victory.But she learns a very great lesson, even if it is a hard one.

Duane's approach is unusual to say the least, but she manages to keep the story under control - sad, but not maudlin.Nita's feelings (and those of her family) are handled very honestly and I think everything rings true.The story will continue in A Wizard Alone, the next book in the series.Both books are touching, and one can't help but admire two teenagers who sometimes find the weight of the world on their shoulders. ... Read more

9. A Wizard Alone: The Sixth Book in the Young Wizards Series
by Diane Duane
Mass Market Paperback: 352 Pages (2003-10-01)
list price: US$6.95 -- used & new: US$1.25
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0152049118
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
While Nita grieves over her mother's death, Kit tackles a challenge as dangerous as it is strange: Rescue a young wizard who has vanished on his first assignment. This new wizard is unlike any other--he's autistic and he's a magical prodigy. His power is enormous. Now Kit and his dog, Ponch, must track down the missing boy before the Lone Power finds him.
Amazon.com Review
Kit and Nita return to join forces against the evil Lone Power, this time over the heart and mind of a young autistic, in Diane Duane's sixth installment of the Young Wizards series. Initially, Kit finds himself flying solo as Nita has sunk into a deep depression over her mother's recent death. Luckily, his telepathic pooch, Ponch, is happy to fill Nita's niche temporarily, as long as biscuits are involved. Kit tries to understand why autistic wizard-in-training Darryl McAllister has been stuck in his Ordeal, or initiation, for over three months. Is it merely the fault of his autism? Inside Darryl's mind, Kit and Ponch find complex landscapes of weird beauty that belie Darryl's rocking, vacant exterior. But they also find the Lone Power, attacking Darryl with an unrelenting brutality that is excessive, even for the Source of all Evil. Meanwhile, Nita is distracted from her sadness by trying to discover the meaning of a series of strange dreams in which a being is pleading for her aid. Could the dreams be a call for help from Darryl? And if so, will Kit and Nita come together in time to destroy the Lone Power before it destroys them?

Though a novice to the series would definitely benefit from reading the previous books, Duane's latest mix of science and spell casting is thought provoking in its own right. She slips enough facts into this fiction to ensure that young readers will not only enjoy the quest, but also learn something along the way. (Ages 10 to 15) --Jennifer Hubert ... Read more

Customer Reviews (28)

5-0 out of 5 stars When Wizards have Relationship problems...
When Wizards have relationship problems, things sometimes go awry.Your dreams get weird (as if Life isn't weird enough already).The TV & DVD decide to have an argument.Your pet goes to a world of its own - *literally.*Then there's the Wizard who forgot to check in....

This is Diane Duane's style, and she does it just as wonderfully as the volumes that come before it.Kit & Nita have an argument, then they start to work on separate things.Kit gets an assignment, while Nita has strange dreams.But are they separate things at all?I'll let the reader find out for him/herself; the tags are enough of a hint, after all.;>

5-0 out of 5 stars A Wizard Alone
This series of books are great for people of all ages! It deals with real life problems along with fantisy ones. Each book keeps you on the edge of your seat and ready to read the next one! My kids love it when I read these books to them!!

2-0 out of 5 stars Wizard Alone
The one good thing I can say about this book was that it got me interested in autism for about a week. If you're going to read a book about magic, try something by Tamora Peirce.

4-0 out of 5 stars A very enjoyable Read
This was a well crafted book.

We get to know the mission right away and both characters, it their way, are on it. There is also some great comic releaf in amids somevery serious subplots.

And best of all Nita finally shines. This is the first book where its she gets to play the unquestionable hero of the piece. Which made the ending even more of a pleasure to read.

The Previous book left Nita heading for a dark place, now the tension is resolved and we know that she will recover.

4-0 out of 5 stars Another Excellent Read from Diane Duane
Diane Duanne has produced another wonderful tale about Nita, Kit, Kit's wonderful dog Ponch, and the rest of her cast of characters. In this particular story we find Nita trying to deal with the death of her Mother and her desire to expand her understanding of Wizarding Speech. Meanwhile, Kit and his dog Ponch, are trying to connect with a new wizard who's ordeal has lasted for several months. They have an additional problem meeting with the new young wizard because the boy is seldom alone, except in his own mind. The boy is Autistic.

Diane's use of imagery and her ability to weave a tale that is gripping have only improved with each book. This story, her sixth in the series, I personally found to be one of the best so far. Happily, I've been able to say that to friends and family for years, since I found the very first one!

... Read more

10. A Wizard Abroad (digest): The Fourth Book in the Young Wizards Series
by Diane Duane
Paperback: 372 Pages (2005-10-01)
list price: US$6.95 -- used & new: US$3.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0152055037
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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To give Nita a vacation from magic, her parents pack her off for a stay with her eccentric aunt in Ireland. But Nita soon finds herself with a host of Irish wizards battling creatures from a nightmare land.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (55)

2-0 out of 5 stars Wizard Abroad
So predictable... I'd rather read a boring school textbook than this. =/ Sorry, Ms. Duane.

2-0 out of 5 stars No Offence but why do we need the Blow-in
It's Ironic that Ronan asked this question. In truth this should have been his story, and He,not Nita, should have been the one to tell it.

As it is we get the view from the outside, with a narrator who isn't quite perseptive enough to give us the whole story.And if Nita's place in this story is somewhat periperal then the other young wizards from the previous books are even more so.

Kit is the proverbial 3rd wheel, and Dairine is used as nothing more then a convnient power source.

I loved the first two books inis series, was disappointed by the third and am sad to say that the story line hasn't recovered in the Fourth. Like its imediat predesor this book feels like the darkness has delibertly been toned down, and frequently omitted, preferring to report the fighting with passages about what Nita remembered rather than dropping us into the thick of it.

As a result I just couldn't find anything to get involved with in this story,

5-0 out of 5 stars great book
this series is reall good and great fun, rather on the lines of harry potter...I highly recomend, NOT just for kids.

5-0 out of 5 stars Fenomenal
Si les gustan las aventuras de magia, jovenes con poder a los que no sólo les toque salvar la vida, sino tambien al mundo y al unvierso... este libro es para ustedes, es el regreso a la fantasía inocente que todos han deseado, donde los problemas adolecesentes son parte del día a día de estos magos... con un vocabulario sencillo... una aventura hechizante y unos personajes que te harán llorar, reir y disfrutar con las locuras que se les ocurren o les suceden... suerte... y bienvenidos al mundo de los magos.

2-0 out of 5 stars Good but not great
I found the fourth book of this series a sad departure from what made the previous books great.It moves the overall story line further, but itsa step i wish i could have skipped ... Read more

11. The Door Into Fire (The Tale of the Five #1)
by Diane Duane
Mass Market Paperback: 304 Pages (1985-08-15)
list price: US$2.95 -- used & new: US$126.61
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812536711
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (12)

4-0 out of 5 stars theosophical
(I am not a native speaker, please overlook my style)

If you just love action-packed, breathtaking sword and sorcery, this is not a book you might be willing to buy, going through the trouble of digging in second hand book stores.

The plot itself is rather thin and would barely fill the first three chapters of any other book; it is not original and therefore easy to guess in advance.
What makes this book worth reading is the author's attempt at establishing a very different kind of world animated by its own, highly original, rules.
In this world, created by a powerful but fallible (and therefore very endearing) goddess who loves her creation but is aware of its flaws, magic is the ultimate result of harmony: that between the sorcerer/ess 's will and nature. Only through real understanding can a person achieve real power.
This concept and many other throughout the book may sound very wiccan, but just take a short look at the original publishing date to realize that Ms Duane follows no literary fashion but establishes her own.

Herewiss' (the main hero) quest for his birthright blue fire magic is a phylosophical journey to awareness: though charming and beautiful, he is also self willed and sometimes even dense.
The other characters of thisfirst volume are more functional than really well rounded, with the possible exception of Sunspark, who is deeply entertaining.

Ms Duane's writing is never easy and not always proficient: some theoretical pages tend to be a bit convolute and dull, but generally speaking she manages to express her idea(l)s in clear, challenging paragraphs. Some are even lyrical, deeply moving: one really feels the depth of her motives even if one does not share them.

A word of caution for touchy people: there is a lot of sex in this book, never graphic, but it is not only essential in the author's Weltanschauung but for the plot too.
Every single character (even the goddess) has a very no nonsense attitude regarding any kind of mating: Herewiss is deeply in love with another man, a childhood friend, but both of them "share" with other people following their instincts.
In Ms Duane's world this is perfectly allright because the goddess encourages any kind of love and once in a while she descends among her creatures to share her love with them.

An interesting book, worth reading because of its depth. Therefore the four stars.

2-0 out of 5 stars not very unique
i was a fan of duane's first few wizard books, so i picked this up. i guess i'm in a minority here, but i wasn't very impressed w/ this book. granted, it was one of duane's earliest efforts, but the plot is predictable and book lays on the mythology really thick. also, duane's dialogue feels out of place with its constant, very american-sounding vernacular. there are just a few interesting twists. the most interesting is the way she explores sex and sexuality, and the ideas of open relationships, bisexuality, and sex in relation to religion. it's also nice to see a (mostly) homosexual character in the main role, but the last herald mage series by mercedes lackey is much more poignant. be aware that this edition (1984) is a revised edition and slightly diff. from the original 1979 edition.

5-0 out of 5 stars In Quest of a Focus
The Door Into Fire (1979) is the first novel in the Tale of Five series. Herewiss is the heir to the Brightwood, a principality within the Kingdom of Darthen. Herewiss has the potential to be the first male in centuries to use the Power of the Flame; the fire is within him, but cannot be expressed in any meaningful way without a Focus.

While training with the Rodmistresses, he has tried various forms of Rods as his Focus, but they all burst. Then he tried swords of wood, ivory and bone, but they all burst. Finally, he tries to imbue steel swords with a form of pseudolife, but even they all burst.

In this novel, Herewiss is working on yet another steel sword in the smithy that he has constructed in his bedroom when he receives a message via pigeon that Freelorn, his loved, and his small band have been trapped by a thousand or more armed men in an old keep south of Madeil. Freelorn wants him to come and use his sorcery to save them once again. After getting permission from Hearn, his father and Lord of Brightwater, Herewiss leaves to rescue Freelorn. He rides out on Dapple, who has been blessed with the talent of being at the right place at the right time, but finds another mount at a wayside shelter during a torrential thunderstorm.

Sunspark is a fire elemental in the form of a red horse with a golden mane. Since it is newly come to the planet, Sunspark spends too much time absorbing the energy from a brush fire and the rainstorm catches it away from shelter. The water is gradually eating away its energy, but it hears Herewiss calling and almost reaches the shelter before it is unable to move anymore. However, Herewiss and Dapple carry and drag it out of the rain, where it soon recovers.

This novel is a tale of adventure and character development. Both Herewiss and Freelorn mature during this novel. Segnbora, another one frustrated by an almost inexpressible Flame, exhibits some changes that might blossom later in this series. However, the major changes occur in Sunspark, the energy being who knows nothing about humanity but is very curious.

This novel expresses a philosophy of Life that underlies every aspect of the story: the only way to cheat death is to maximize Life and Love in all its forms. When he has his epiphany, Herewiss finds that he is just a small part of the Life that permeates the Universe. This worldview also underlies the Young Wizards series.

This novel incorporates a variant of the Triple Goddess religion as the major spiritual influence; in fact, the Mother and the Maiden play a significant part in the story. This religion promotes various forms of sexual experiences, of which heterosexual sex is special only in that it produces offspring. The Goddess herself has Twin Lovers, her own children by parthenogenesis, who are originally both male, but who die and return, sometimes as male and sometimes as female.

Other aspects of the story show a definite Irish influence, but one that antecedes the Celtic infusion. The Fyrd, the aboriginal fauna in the Middle Kingdoms, include horwolves, nadders, and keplians. However, there were no Sidhe nor any other sentients occupying the land prior to the coming of the humans.

This series is being republished after being long out of print. The Door Into Fire and The Door Into Shadow were issued as an omnibus edition in 2002 (see The Sword and the Dragon) and the other two (including the hereto unpublished The Door Into Starlight) are scheduled to be released in 2004 (or later).

Highly recommended for Duane fans and anyone else who enjoys tales of sword and sorcery with some serious character development.

-Arthur W. Jordin

4-0 out of 5 stars Beauty, love, adventure, pain - all here
Loved this series, seems like forever.My view of a deity I could speak to and not flinch from , came of this world... go read it and you'll see why.
Everyone else told you about the characters and world.I think I memorized huge parts of this book before I even knew I was doing it.That's how special it is.
IF you want another bit of this world, she wrote a story honoring Andre Norton [Moonsinger's World?] with a Rodmistress who always makes me cry. And that's not all bad, either.Won't even let my mother keep this book long, and part of why is Diane's story!
You'd also love her beings in "So you want to be a wizard" series.That's going on book 5 now.Haven't read that yet, but I will, and I know I'll love it.
To all my fellow readers who've been there in your hearts - may the Goddess hold you in Her hand...

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best Fantasy Novel I've Ever Read
This novel is one that I've read and reread in both the editions I have -- the original paperback and the Bluejay books edition. It is a story of enduring love, the triumph of love over fear and hate, and most of all, the best truly different fantasy world I've ever seen made up. It is culturally, historically, and religiously different without being dry, like some science-fiction books that try to portray another really different culture get.

It's main character is Herewiss, a man who has the potential to wield great magic but cannot break through to connect with it and manifest his magic. He joins forces with Freelorn, the exiled heir of a neighboring kingdom and his lifelong love, Segnbora, a mysterious troubled woman, and some of Freelorn's faithful friends (Harald, Moris, and Dritt) in an adventure that leads them to the edges of their world, and involves door into other worlds and the mastering of a fire elemental whose favored form is that of a horse!

The next two books in the series are The Door into Shadow and The Door into Sunset. At last, I hear news that Ms. Duane has written the fourth (The Door into Twilight) that I have hounded the bookstores about now for years, diligently searching in the "Du" section of fantasy and science fiction with every trip.

For those who really love the world of the Middle Kingdoms, there's a little-known short story by Diane Duane published in Flashing Swords! #5: Demons and Daggers (edited by Lin Carter, Nelson Doubleday 1981) called "Parting Gifts." It is about an older rodmistress, the Shadow, an young swashbuckler, and a kitten. It features a wild hunt and facing down the Shadow in his lair. I cry whenever I finish it. If you can find it, read it and add it to your knowledge of the world setting.

I've used Ms. Duane's Middle Kingdoms setting as the basis for my personal D&D campaign for years now. Sure, my campaign is by no means her books, but she provided such a rich tapestry (and map!) that I didn't have to go far to have a solid foundation for a whole world. ... Read more

12. Spock's World (Star Trek)
by Diane Duane
Mass Market Paperback: 388 Pages (2000-08-01)
list price: US$3.99
Isbn: 0743403711
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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It is the twenty-third century. On the planet Vulcan, a crisis of unprecedented proportion has caused the convocation of the planet's ruling council -- and summoned the U.S.S. Enterprise™ from halfway across the galaxy to bring Vulcan's most famous son home in its hour of need.

As Commander Spock, his father, Sarek, and Captain James T. Kirk struggle to preserve Vulcan's future, the planet's innermost secrets are laid before us, from its beginnings millions of years ago to its savage prehistory, from merciless tribal warfare to medieval court intrigue, from the exploration of space to the development of o'thia -- the ruling ethic of logic. And Spock -- torn between his duty to Starfleet and the unbreakable ties that bind him to Vulcan -- must reconcile both his own inner conflict and the external dilemma his planet faces...lest the Federation itself be ripped asunder. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (42)

5-0 out of 5 stars Book Has No Equal
Spock's World is without peer in the realm of Star Trek literature. The depth of the characters, both familiar and new, and a unique perspective on why Vulcans are Vulcan, not to mention Duane's mastery of prose that all can lose themselves in... if you haven't read this book and you're a fan of the original series, shame on you! If the shows had been written this well, all of them would still be on the air. Most Star Trek novels are mindless pap compared to her work. Go, now, and get this book and put your life on hold for a day or two and read it. You won't regret it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best Trek Novel Ever!
Yes, I know thats a broad description, but this rings all the classic trek bells, while still being good science fiction. Diane Duane - read her... simple as that

5-0 out of 5 stars A Classic
If anything, this should be made into a classic for Star Trek novels.Granted one thing kind of disputes with what we know as "Star Trek History" which is the First Contact incident between Earth and Vulcan, but aside from that the book is excellent, not to mention very griping.

It's a time when Vulcan has it's paranoia of emotions and outsiders brought out, to the point of proposing secession from the United Federation of Planets, expelling all off-worlders and closing itself up into it's own world.The story also has the progression of Vulcan from creation to "today", which is very interesting in itself.I would say this is a must for fans... possibly even for non-fans.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not really Star Trek canon, but fills in some gaps
This title certainly will help the reader to understand parts of the planet Vulcan's history much better.Overall, the novel is mostly faithful to the broader Star Trek universe, and the sections on Vulcan's history are compelling reading.The only portion that I wondered about was the section that covers the life of Surak, where he is placed in an industrial Vulcan society very similar in style to that of contemporary earth, which is definitely not the image that I had of Surak from previous Trek lore.Nevertheless, this was a fairly good read.

1-0 out of 5 stars Obviously written by a female
When I first started reading "Spock's World," I didn't pay attentnion to the author.But soon into the reading, I came across a sentence that described Jim's thoughts about a certain "handsome" man.I thought it odd for the author to consider Kirk's thoughts concerning the beauty of another man, so I flipped to the cover and discovered that the author was a woman.There's not much to that in itself but (Diane) Duane continually effeminates "Spock's World."

The best example is the Vulcan psyche, which Duane sentimentalizes.Another example of Duane's unorthodox and overall poor grasp of the "Star Trek" tradition is the silly nature imbued within Kirk, Spock, and McCoy.In the story, McCoy, Spock, and Kirk present themselves to a secretary so they may be admited into an assembly hall to speak against "Sessionism."Here, McCoy asks the secretary if a bowl of popcorn may be brought to his seat at the assembly.Kirk follows this joke with one of his own.I did laugh, however, I found the time inappropriate for cheap comedy.Of more reason, Duane continually forces Kirk, McCoy, and Spock, yes, even Spock, to give air to a funny side not yet shown in the "Star Trek" series until now, thankfully so - mostly because Duane's humor was cliche.

These characters of Duane's are her own creation.They are not the "Star Trek" charcters familiar to most readers.The Vulcans are emotional and dramatic, which is the story's main downfall.

... Read more

13. Diane Duane's Box of Wizardry
by Diane Duane
Paperback: 1152 Pages (2002-10-01)
list price: US$18.95 -- used & new: US$11.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0152045821
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Magic comes in many shapes and sizes . . . such as this box of the first three titles in Diane Duane's bespelling, bestselling, compulsively readable Young Wizards series. Now So You Want to Be a Wizard, Deep Wizardry, and High Wizardry are available in one handsome package, perfect for gift giving. Put this boxed set into the hands of young readers and make magic!
... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

4-0 out of 5 stars morality and magic can go together
Diane Duane's series tackles some issues of good/evil and the harder decisions that a child could have to make if she were learning about wizardry.What Duane doesn't focus on are the more mature issues of sex or emotional envolvement that children find boring or confusing.

I read the books years ago, and bought the box set for my 10-year-old niece.My niece is interested in magic and fantasy reading, and is a very strong reader, but she is still a child.These books are a challenging read with challenging concepts, but not age-inappropriate topics.

5-0 out of 5 stars Where there's will there's a wizard
Diane Duane's series "So You Want to be a Wizard" takes a little of everything you'd want in a book for young adults.

The hero and heroine of the books are likeable kids who feel like every kid does; they have problems at school, worries at home, irritating younger siblings, and they generally spend lots of time trying both to fit in and to be themselves.Despite having become wizards, however, their problems don't go away like magic: 'Nita and Kit find themselves in both physically demanding and morally challenging situations where their choices mean something to the fate of the world.

Challenging concepts like "entropy" are explained and form a critical base to the choices that must be made by Kit, Nita, and later Nita's sister Dairine.And even if they're not wizards, the reader is left with a feeling that their choices matter.

Highly recommended for both advanced younger readers and for young adults; even recommended for those who are children-at-heart, looking for some unusual stories that keep the imagination working.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Young Wizards Set of Three
Diane Duane has added to this series over the years, and as of this writing she has written seven books in this series, with an eight in the works.The scope of the books rivals Harry Potter, a much later series, in many aspects, but the mythologies and the rules are completely different.

The first three books are "So You Want to Be a Wizard," where we meet Kit (Christopher) Rodriguez and Nita (Juanita) Callahan for the first time.We learn that they were picked on by bullies and generally felt as though they were outsiders.Both discover a book that was meant for them that invited them to become wizards.Both accept and thus starts a multi-book fight against the Lone Power, who is similar to Satan.

In the second book, "Deep Wizardry," the story continues with Kit and Nita performing a ritual that dates back millenia to keep the sea floor stable in the presence of forces that could create havoc on the ocean floor.

In the third book, "High Wizardy," Nita's younger sister Dairine is discovered to be an extremely powerful wizard.It is also this book that introduces computers to the series.An introduction important to the plot of this book.This book has the most science fiction elements of any book in this series.

The quality of this series has generally been quite good.The later books include "A Wizard Abroad," "A Wizard's Dilemma," "A Wizard Alone," and "A Wizard's Holiday."If you enjoy fantasy and science fiction, and you enjoyed the Harry Potter books, I believe you will find Diane Duane's series interesting.

5-0 out of 5 stars While waiting for the next Harry Potter...
...this would be a perfect series to explore.Like Rowling, Duane (who doesn't write nearly enough, in my opinion--Diane, are you listening?) tells the story of youthful magic-users growing into their powers, learning as they go, and facing an ongoing threat from an insidious enemy.Her main characters, both mavericks among their kind, are well-drawn and sympathetic, and the books (and their sequels) can also be read as Christian allegory.Though usually packaged for "young adults" (which in pubspeak means kids 11 up), they are, like Harry Potter, well-written and exciting enough to appeal to grown-up readers too.Now at last the first three books in the series are again available in a popularly-priced paperback edition.Excellent modern fantasy and not to be missed. ... Read more

14. So You Want to Be a Wizard (digest): The First Book in the Young Wizards Series
by Diane Duane
Paperback: 408 Pages (2003-10-01)
list price: US$6.95 -- used & new: US$1.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0152049401
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Something stopped Nita's hand as it ran along the bookshelf. She looked and found that one of the books had a loose thread at the top of its spine. It was one of those So You Want to Be a . . . books, a series on careers. So You Want to Be a Pilot, and a Scientist . . . a Writer. But his one said, So You Want to Be a Wizard.
I don't belive this, Nina thought. She shut the book and stood there holding it in her hand, confused, amazed, suspicious--and delighted. If it was a joke, it was a great one. If it wasn't . . . ?
Amazon.com Review
Ages 10 & up. In the spirit of Madeleine L'Engle's classic A Wrinkle inTime, this is a fascinating and powerfully involving story abouttwo lonely kids who are inadvertently caught up in the never-endingbattle between good and evil. The problems of everyday adolescent lifeand the mysteries of magic are perfectly blended, along with plenty ofhumor and suspense. In a starred review, School Library Journalwrote, "well-structured and believable... this fantasy should havewide appeal." Horn Book wrote, "a splendid, unusualfantasy... an outstanding, original work." ... Read more

Customer Reviews (194)

5-0 out of 5 stars Best Read for 11 and up!
A very good choice for kids 11+It has a little of everything. As soon as I read the first sentence I was hooked. Why did they get rid of- Whoops! Your going to have to find out about what happens in this spectacular book.

P.S. This is still my favorite one in the series!

5-0 out of 5 stars LUVIN IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This is a great series!I finally bought the book a couple of months ago after already having read it twice by checking it out from the public library.It is a great story and has some amazing stuff in it.From the first moment I picked it up, I was hooked.

3-0 out of 5 stars Unique and for Younger Readers.
In this book, two young kids find a book called 'So You Want to Be a Wizard'.This dramatically changes both of their lives as they begin to study the magical art.This story has action, humor, and magic. I thought that the story was very unique and interesting, a twist on the Harry Potter series, but at some moments I found that an important piece of action would happen in half a sentence and I had almost missed it. In my opinion, it was a good book for younger and less advanced readers that sometimes lacked detail. Recommended to both boys and girls ages 8-10.

5-0 out of 5 stars In Life's Name, and For Life's Sake....
I wish the so-called Golden Age of reading went on for a lifetime.I've been an adult for a decade now, and as I think back on the books I've read in the past ten years, very, *very* few have left so much of themselves in my heart or mind as the stories I pulled out of my grade school libraries.In many cases those magical books wouldn't hold up now.I think, however, that if I had discovered Diane Duane's Young Wizards series at twenty-nine instead of twelve, the first three would still have a place on my bookshelves, and I would still write this glowing review, as theirs is an enchantment that transcends age.

Nita and Kit are two kids growing up in New York City.Nita's biggest worry in the world is a gang of bullies who love to beat her.She's that mocked and hated creature, the braniac, and finds refuge in books when she can--it's a pity the world won't let her stay there.But she's going to have larger concerns than one rich brat and her hangers-on very shortly.There's this book she found in the library, you see, that has the intriguing title _So You Want To Be a Wizard_....

Some would say wizardry isn't kids' business.None of those people are wizards.Wizards know the eventual death of the universe is everyone's business.Nita has self-defense and maybe a little payback in mind when she takes her Wizard's Oath, but power must be paid for: she and her schoolmate Kit Rodriguez go in just a few days from learning the language of trees and stars to facing down the greatest enemy they can ever know.All the help they can summon won't save their world if their own strength fails.Nita and Kit learn about love and sacrifice, redemption, and powers over which entropy holds no sway.

This is probably the 'youngest' of the original trilogy since our heroes begin as normal children with ordinary children's concerns and take awhile to realize the true scope and seriousness of magic.It doesn't matter.The ending is heartwrenching however old you are.Stay with Kit and Nita and they'll make it worth your while; if you're like me you may spend the rest of your life keeping an eye out, wistfully, for a careworn little manual no one but you can see.

1-0 out of 5 stars Ugh!I finally gave up!
This book was so awful I couldn't make it past page 60.The plot was boring.The sentences drag on and on endlessly.I kept waiting for something that made sense...I didn't find anything and finally threw the book down and gave up.I will not read anymore of this book or the series!!!! ... Read more

15. Star Trek: The Wounded Sky
by Diane Duane
 Paperback: Pages (1983-01-01)

Asin: B0017GH7IE
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16. Doctor's Orders (Star Trek, Book 50)
by Diane Duane
Paperback: 291 Pages (1990-06-01)
list price: US$5.50 -- used & new: US$2.55
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0671661892
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Doctor's Orders

When Dr. McCoy grumbles once too often about the way the U.S.S. Enterprise™ ought to be run, Captain Kirk decides to leave the doctor in command while he oversees a rountine diplomatic mission.Kirk beams down to a strange planet nicknamed "Flyspeck" to negotiate its admission into the Federation, leaving Dr. McCoy to enjoy his new authority.

However, the doctor soon learns that command is a double-edged sword when Kirk disappears without a trace. Desperately trying to locate his catain, McCoy comes under pressure from Starfleet to resolve the situation immediately. Matters go from bad to worsewhen the Klingons arrive and stake their own claim on Flyspeck

Then another, more deadly power threatens them all, and suddenly Dr. McCoy and the Starship Enterprise find themselves pitted against an alien fleet in a battle they have no hope of winning. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (26)

5-0 out of 5 stars Laugh Out Loud FUNNY!!!!
This was one of the most FUN Star Trek novels I have ever read!!!!!I've always had an affinity for Dr. McCoy and reading this scenario where Kirk turned the tables on Bones because the good doctor gave his captain a bit of a hard time once too often was quite enjoyable!I've always loved the sparring matches between Spock and McCoy and putting Bones in the Captain's Chair put a new spin on that!When the first Klingon ship showed up, I LOVED the way McCoy handled the initial exchange, even if it wasn't according to standard Star Fleet protocol!Add in the Orion pirates, a pompous Star Fleet bureaucrat, new beings that the Enterprise crew had never encountered before and it had all the makings of a fun romp!I would have LOVED to see this novel brought to the screen!!!!!!

4-0 out of 5 stars All the Qualities of a good read, but slightly lacking
I am a new Star Trek reader, but am a seasoned reader in general over many genres. I know a good plot when I see one and this plot came almost up to par, but not quite.

The planet The Enterprise is investigating itself is very well constructed and thought out, bringing the creatures to life like many other books (including Star Trek books) sometimes don't. Of the three species, only two are really thoroughly explained which was a bit of a disappointment, but I understand it was more about getting to the plot than adding a page more about the third species.

I am a fan of McCoy, and seeing him in command in a job Kirk does every day was quite humorous. Of course, he brings his own quirky personality, but in the end acts more like Jim Kirk than McCoy which I wasn't sure I liked or disliked. I thought he could have been more three dimensional in that aspect instead of everyone defaulting to the famous James T. Kirk.

But that's really a minor issue. The major issue I have with this book is the flow. It flows well the first third or so, chops a little in the middle, and has a tidal wave chop towards the end. Everything ended so quickly, it felt like the author ran out of allotted pages. Major issues in the plot were filled in hastily and sloppily.

Despite those flaws, it's quite a fascinating read. I wouldn't pay more than 3 dollars or so for it with free shipping quite honestly, but I am fond of it even if I wasn't totally satisfied with the execution of the plot. Intriguing for a biologist such as myself.

5-0 out of 5 stars Finally a Trek Novel that is true to the Mission of Enterprise.
I loved this novel because it seemed to be the most in depth story that is true to what the whole mission of the Enterprise is all about. I loved the rich detail of how the planet was surveyed and cataloged. I loved how in depth they talked about the universal translator and the difficulties in trying to understand the newly discovered culture. Basically I think this novel sums up Star Trek at it's best with a mix of humor as well as drama and a space battle to boot. I recommend this novel as a fun read.Also I would like to espouse the joys of reading this on my i-Phone. It worked out great and I personally prefer reading e-books over regular ones lately. easy to carry and they keep your place. I also like the fact I can look words up on the fly and have the INTERNET capabilities to look up related subjects.

4-0 out of 5 stars McCoy Here
Diane Duane is one of the better Star Trek writers that I have read.She seems to be able to stay true to the characters as developed in the television series while she manages to do some extraordinary plot and story line development."Doctor's Orders" is no exception.

In this novel, Ms. Duane's focus appears to be on ship's operations -- you know, the stuff people have to do in order to run a finely tuned operation like a starship.Her main interest in this regard is on the data gathering during a first contact mission, and specifically how to get the universal translator programmed to be able to understand three new languages that have never before been encountered.

Along the way, Ms. Duane also gives Dr. McCoy an opportunity to experience the problems of command, which heretofor he tended to sluff off as a cushy job of just sitting around in a chair while everyone else did the real work.It is interesting to watch how McCoy deals with this and with the commander of a Klingon Battle Crusier.

There are a couple of things in this book, however, which don't ring true.First, of course, is the idea that Captain Kirk would have transferred command to Dr. McCoy, who is not a line officer, when more qualified officers would have been available.Second is the idea that in a genuine emergency situation, First Officer Spock would not have the authority to relieve McCoy of command, simply because Kirk had transfer command to him while he, kirk, was needed on the planet beneath them.And third, there is a scene in which only two people are on the bridge while a Klingon Battle Crusier is hanging only two hundred kilometers off the stern of the Enterprise.Even McCoy would know better than that.

Still, the overall story line is an entertaining one, and the ultimate battle in space is strategically and tactically well thought out, with more detail presented than a simple command to "fire everything."

If you are a Star Trek fan, I would definiately recommend this title to your collection; if you're not a fan, this book might change your mind.

3-0 out of 5 stars Good Star Trek entertainment
"Doctor's Orders" is a pretty good Star Trek yarn set in the "Original Series" universe.The storyline is quite simple.The USS Enterprise is dispatched on a follow-up first contact and survey mission of a planet that has the unique characteristic of having not one but three sentient species.The Federation wants to see if these races would like to join the Federation, and Captain Kirk is essentially heading a diplomatic mission.

Well, Kirk puts McCoy in charge of the Enterprise (for reasons that I thought made no sense at all, but never mind) and for reasons I won't give away here, Captain Kirk becomes essentially incommunicado.The Klingons show up, and well, more would be telling.

The main weakness in this story in my opinion was its use of the much-overused time travel device, and the general implausibility as to the nature of the three alien races on the planet.Each reader may judge for him or her self, but I just didn't buy it.

The strength of this novel derives from some pretty well thought-out space battle action, and good characterization of the Klingons, particularly McCoy's interaction with them.The author's portrayal of Star Fleet bureaucracy was also hilarious, and true-to-life regarding any such organization.I enjoyed it.

Overall this one is well-written and good Star Trek entertainment. ... Read more

17. Dark Mirror (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
by Diane Duane
Paperback: 337 Pages (1994-11-01)
list price: US$5.99 -- used & new: US$4.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0671794388
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
One hundred years ago, four crewmembers of the U.S.S EnterpriseTM crossed the dimensional barrier and found a mirror image of their own universe, populated by nightmare duplicates of their shipmates. Barely able to escape with their lives, they returned, thankful that the accident which had brought them there could not be duplicated, or so they thought.

But now the scientists of that empire have found a doorway into our universe. Their plan is to destroy from within, to replace a Federation Starships with one of their own. Their victims are the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise NCC-1701-D, who now find themselves engaged in combat against the most savage enemies they have ever encountered, themselves. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (54)

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the best Star Trek novels every written
I have long believed that the episode of the Star Trek original series that had the most potential for a sequel was "Mirror Mirror." In that episode, Captain Kirk, Scotty, McCoy and Uhura are beamed to an Enterprise in another universe where the people are vicious barbarians. At the end, after Kirk asks Spock to make a difference and change the evil Empire, Spock replies, "Captain Kirk, I shall consider it."
Although this story is set in the era of "The Next Generation" we learn some of the consequences of Spock's consideration. The Empire has found a way to penetrate the universe of the Federation and has sent a spy to the Enterprise in order to learn the secrets needed for a successful takeover. The plan of the evil Picard and the Empire is to populate the Enterprise with their counterparts from the Empire. This will be the point of the spear of an all-out invasion by the Empire so it must be stopped at all costs.
To learn the secrets of the Empire and their plans, Troi, Geordi and Picard beam over to the Empire Enterprise and take over the positions of their counterparts. It is a difficult task as even the slightest misstep will lead to their being discovered. Furthermore, assassination is a regular tactic used for career advancement in the Empire so that is also a constant secondary threat.
This is an exciting episode, written to take advantage of both the military and emotional tension. The Federation people on the Empire ship are subjected to an extremely tense and emotionally draining experience and Duane does a superb job of presenting this situation. The climactic ending is also tense, full of suspense and the inclusion of the dolphin-like Hwii character was a master stroke of originality. This is one of the best Star Trek novels ever written.

3-0 out of 5 stars Great vision of the mirror universe, although slow at times
Ah... The Mirror Universe, one of my favorite themes of Star Trek.It all started with Mirror, Mirror, Spock with a beard, Sulu with that big scar, and Uhura looking very attractive in her little uniform.Anyway, safe to say it was one of my favorite episodes.I, within the last month, just started reading Star Trek novels and this one was very high on my list of can't wait to read.

It started out extremely slow for me.Duane is very descriptive sometimes to a fault.Then I read about the dolphin character and I thought I had made a mistake about reading this book.As the enterprise figures out that they are in a different universe and that the federation ship that is off in the distance is also the enterprise.There is a lot of Holodeck, Opera, and "I'll be in my quarters" time at that point.I would say that the first 75 to 100 pages were pretty slow moving.

Then the story picked up a little bit.Picard, Troi, and Geordi are on the other enterprise trying to figure out how to get back to there own universe.My favorite part of the novel is the history of the universe that Duane is describing.From the Shakespear work that is different to the idea that the empire controls all of the surrounding space.Along with the fact thatDuane knows her characters.All the characters that we know and love from TNG. The mirror characters are equally as well written.Great Characters!!!With the exception of that dolphin showing up for time to time and going back to the opera idea a couple of more times the story moves fairly well.That includes a very exciting climax which is first rate.

A lot of criticism about this book is that it was written before the DS9 episode "Crossover" and since it has a very different history than the "canon" version that it is not worth reading.Two things to say about that:First of all, the "Shatnerverse"... enough said.Don't get me wrong Kirk is my favorite character of the Star Trek universe, and I am certainly not complaining that I can read more stories about him.However, one would have to admit that Shatner's book don't exactly follow the traditional Star Trek canon either.Secondly, as we know from the Star Trek TNG episode "Parrells" there are an infinite number of parrelle universies.Maybe Duane was simply writing about a different universe than the one we see in "Crossover".The main difference being that mirror Spock succeeded in making a difference as Kirk suggested in "Mirror, Mirror" Plus maybe Shatnerverse is actually another universe too, were James T Kirk is still alive.

Bottom line:This book is very slow in parts, but overall a very interesting and fun novel to read.If you can get past a lot of description and that damn dolphin then you have a very fascinating story here.

Grade: B

1-0 out of 5 stars A chore.
This book was a chore to get through.I've read a handful of Trek novels, and this is my least favorite by far.It was dry, boring and difficult to get through.The novel had no structure of any kind (no build up and no climax) and the "suprise ending" was pretty lame.I found a lot of the characters saying and doing things they normally wouldn't do.I know that Duane is no stranger to the Trek franchise, but if I didn't know better I would assume that she didn't know these characters at all.

5-0 out of 5 stars Yes a Great story and a Good ending
I did read some of the previous reviews, and I do agree that this is one of the best stories to come from the Mirror universe idea that I've ever read.The author really conveys both the good and evil quite well and in a believable way.All the Star Trek characters are well written and you hear their voices clearly.The ending is not that bad, don't be alarmed.I liked everything about this book.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great story, weak ending
This is a wonderful story--the author really knows the characters and stays true to their personalities. Also the story is solid, and unfolds in a steady pace. But the end doesn't seem satisfying--the outcome almost seems too easy, and the pacing doesn't feel right (things happen too quickly as we get close to the end, and cause the outcome to be almost unbelievable).

I can't say more because I don't want to give away any of the story to those of you who still care to read it. It truly is a great read. Just be prepared for a slightly disappointing ending. ... Read more

18. Stealing the Elf-King's Roses
by Diane Duane
Mass Market Paperback: 416 Pages (2002-11-01)
list price: US$21.99 -- used & new: US$10.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0446609838
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
In an alternate-world Los Angeles, prosecutor/psychic Lee Enfield and her partner, Gelert, investigate the murder of an elf. They soon reveal a deadly network of ties among organized crime, multinational corporations, and planetary governments of the Seven Worlds--all working together on the "ethnic cleansing" of elves from the alternate world of Alfheim. Original. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (18)

5-0 out of 5 stars incredible

i've read this AT LEAST 20 times since it came out.

fabulously fabulous book. i wish Duane would stop writing all those Star Trek and Spiderman books and get back to THIS kind of storyline. the publication of her new
Wizards book has been delayed for about 3 years also, while she piddles around with sub-standard stuff. i've sent her email about this, but i'm sure she has never read

4-0 out of 5 stars Magic or tech?Maybe both
Fantasy has always turned on the willingness and ability of a small group of people (sometimes only one) to "change the world," and Diane Duane (one of my favorite writers), in her ongoing Young Wizards series, has always proceeded on the principle (reversing Arthur C. Clarke) that "any sufficiently advanced magic is indistinguishable from technology."Here she gives us what may be her ultimate example of these truisms to date.Liayna "Lee" Enfield lives in a world that calls itself Earth, but it isn't *our* Earth.Here office-type high-tech is even techier than ours, "smart houses" are apparently so commonplace that even a private investigator can afford to own one, and people commute in aerial vehicles called "hovs."It isn't paradise: crime exists, right up through murder, and there are traffic jams and air pollution--but there is no word or concept for genocide, and world wars are apparently unknown, though nuclear weapons have been invented.Worldgates connect it to five other "alternate Earths," including one where space travel is so commonplace that aliens routinely visit Earth--and one, Alfheim, which is the home of both the Elves (immortal, incredibly beautiful hominids) and the allotropic ("fairy") gold that powers the Gates; there's even a fivefold UN and Interpol.It's also a world where God and Christ (though referred to in those terms) are both female, and where a human (Lee) can partner with a "madra"--a 40"-tall intelligent canid (his people were originally from Alfheim, though why they left is never explained) who, though he doesn't have hands, can speak English by way of an implant and even drive a hov, which automatically modifies itself to suit him when he gets behind the controls.And where, though no one uses the word "magic," the living Power of Justice visits the courtroom after arguments have closed and both pronounces and enforces the verdict (in the very first chapter we see a dishonest entertainment promoter literally transformed into a large weasel, apparently with its human mind still intact).Lee and her partner Gelert are psychically gifted "mantics"--private detectives of a kind, but also authorized to argue in court, usually for the prosecution--who have the ability, respectively, to See and Scent what has happened in a given locality within a certain window of time, and, as we eventually learn, to also See and Scent hidden truths about what's going on there *now*.When an Elven communications-industry exec is murdered in Ellay (their version of Los Angeles), they expect at first that it will prove to be just another investigation.But before long it morphs into a complex mosaic of conspiracy, economic and racial jealousy, and interworld moral contagion, fuelled in part by the recent discovery of "our" Earth (called Terra), and they find themselves not only saving the Laurin (the Elf-King) from a palace coup but having to help him literally restructure his entire world and race.The alternative is the destruction of Alfheim by the other worlds, contaminated by leakage from a reality (our own) where genocide is a political tool.And if that is allowed to happen, says the Laurin, "everyone in all the Worlds, everywhere" will die too.

Though the spine label describes it as fantasy, "Roses" reads more to me like sf; Elves in her Alfheim use blasters, hold jobs like humans (often even in the human worlds), and don't seem vulnerable to "cold iron," and even the Laurin's ability to "worldmaster"--anything from controlling the weather to literally summoning back the prehistoric ocean to destroy his enemies--is described by him as "how kingship works here...Those of us who could understand the World well enough to make the weather do what the crops needed, lived to breed descendants who could make it do that even better" (in other words, evolution at work), and is apparently as much a psychic process as Lee's Sight.Lee's version of Earth, particularly, is sketched with dozens of bits of techie throwaway so casually inserted into the stream of the story that the reader scarcely notices them--which, of course, is the best way to build a world: make it seem natural.

Lee, Gelert, and the Laurin eventually do triumph over the conspiracy and the leaking contagion, averting transdimensional war (you'll have to read the book to find out how), and in the end all the worlds (perhaps even ours) are changed in many profound ways.And here we see that this reality, though it's science-fictional, may well be a part of the same one that the Young Wizards inhabit, and that Lee may have unwittingly served as the tool of the Powers That Be.The slightly abrupt ending leaves room for more explication of the changes she and the Laurin have effected, and I sincerely hope that Duane goes on to write more in Lee's Universe.

3-0 out of 5 stars Liked the world, but there are some major flaws.....
First, let me say that Diane Duane is one of the top science fiction/fantasy writers today.This is not her best work. If you want to try her best, check out "Book of Night with Moon"or "Door Into Fire."

In this multi-dimensional world, the equivalent to our real world has psychic/magical powers.One of those is Justice which allows one with that power to speak with the voice of the dead.It certainly solves crimes.That, in itself would be an interesting and thrilling novel, but Duane has to add the second dimension, Alfheim, the Elf World.Elves are getting killed and someone's covering up.Finally, we add the complication of the Elf King.It's too much---definitely doesn't realize any of the various storylines' potential. Further, Duane's heroine's self-esteem was just plain sad. Ladies, you'll see what I mean when you read this. At the end, I had the strong urge to yell "Get a clue, sister!" into the book.

Still, "Stealing the Elf King's Roses" is well-written and worth a read if you like the rest of Duane's books.I wouldn't mind seeing a sequel in this world with a bit more focus.

3-0 out of 5 stars reads like a sequel
This book reads like a sequel -- as if you had accidentally started reading with the second book of a trilogy, perhaps. The setting is a very complex sheaf of alternate universes. The universe in which we exist enters the story only as a brief way-stop near the end of the story. The other universes seem to be structured so that they are the realities whose psychic echoes inspire our mythologies. There's a Midgarth, which might be the source of the Norse myths, for example; and there's Alfen, home of some arrogant, immortal, and impossibly beautiful people. On the other hand, there's a Xiahon, which if it's meant to match a mythos, went right over my head. Indeed I suspect there are a lot of Duane-readers who don't have the background to recognize even as broad a clue as "Midgarth".

All of what must be a very rich back-story is introduced in true SF style: never by direct exposition, only by passing references in the narrative. In reading SF, the pleasant riddle of figuring out what kind of world you're in, on your own without lectures from the author, is part of the fun. But here, I really wanted some exposition. Or, preferably, that hypothetical first volume of the series, a prequel with a simpler plot and a more leisurely exploration of the worlds of the "Five-Geneva Pact.".

5-0 out of 5 stars Duane had done it again!
Duane had done it again! This book was EXTREMELY good, though that is not surprising. I really enjoyed it.
Like all hr other books I'veread so faar. ... Read more

19. A Wizard Abroad
by Diane Duane
 Paperback: Pages (1995)

Isbn: 0552527440
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (55)

2-0 out of 5 stars Wizard Abroad
So predictable... I'd rather read a boring school textbook than this. =/ Sorry, Ms. Duane.

2-0 out of 5 stars No Offence but why do we need the Blow-in
It's Ironic that Ronan asked this question. In truth this should have been his story, and He,not Nita, should have been the one to tell it.

As it is we get the view from the outside, with a narrator who isn't quite perseptive enough to give us the whole story.And if Nita's place in this story is somewhat periperal then the other young wizards from the previous books are even more so.

Kit is the proverbial 3rd wheel, and Dairine is used as nothing more then a convnient power source.

I loved the first two books inis series, was disappointed by the third and am sad to say that the story line hasn't recovered in the Fourth. Like its imediat predesor this book feels like the darkness has delibertly been toned down, and frequently omitted, preferring to report the fighting with passages about what Nita remembered rather than dropping us into the thick of it.

As a result I just couldn't find anything to get involved with in this story,

5-0 out of 5 stars great book
this series is reall good and great fun, rather on the lines of harry potter...I highly recomend, NOT just for kids.

5-0 out of 5 stars Fenomenal
Si les gustan las aventuras de magia, jovenes con poder a los que no sólo les toque salvar la vida, sino tambien al mundo y al unvierso... este libro es para ustedes, es el regreso a la fantasía inocente que todos han deseado, donde los problemas adolecesentes son parte del día a día de estos magos... con un vocabulario sencillo... una aventura hechizante y unos personajes que te harán llorar, reir y disfrutar con las locuras que se les ocurren o les suceden... suerte... y bienvenidos al mundo de los magos.

2-0 out of 5 stars Good but not great
I found the fourth book of this series a sad departure from what made the previous books great.It moves the overall story line further, but itsa step i wish i could have skipped ... Read more

20. Rihannsu: The Bloodwing Voyages (Star Trek)
by Diane Duane, Peter Morwood
Paperback: 784 Pages (2006-12-19)
list price: US$18.00 -- used & new: US$5.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B003UHU9AQ
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Born in the twilight years of Vulcan's violent and passionate past, those who declared themselves Rihannsu chose to reign free in the unknown reaches of space rather than to serve under the new tyranny of logic. Having severed themselves from their homeworld, they survived the perilous voyage across the stars to wash ashore on a distant planet, there to begin the civilization that would one day flower into the Romulan Star Empire.

Now, after millennia of wars and conquests, that empire is decaying from within, surrendering its noble heritage to reckless ambition, abandoning honor for kidnapping and murder. The corruption is so great that the Rihannsu's finest military officer -- Commander Ael t'Rllaillieu of the warbird Bloodwing -- believes she can save her people only by joining forces with her greatest enemy: Captain James T. Kirk of the Starship Enterprise™.

Meanwhile, on the Romulan homeworld, a Federation deep-cover agent has been posing as a household servant named Arrhae i-Khellian -- but her operation takes a strange turn when a captured Starfleet officer is brought to her home . . .

The lives of Ael, Arrhae, and the crew of the Enterprise come together in these astonishing adventures -- originally published in four volumes: My Enemy, My Ally; The Romulan Way; Swordhunt; and Honor Blade -- that will challenge everything you thought you knew about the Romulans. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

2-0 out of 5 stars Degrades the Romulans
The Romulans used to be my favorite Star Trek villains. I read the Rihannsu series because I thought it would be a fun exploration of Romulan culture and history. However, I barely recognized the Romulans in Rihannsu. The book degrades them and seems to radically alter their characters. The main character, Ael, seems too perfect, while the rest of the Romulans seem like a bunch of buffoons. Furthermore, the book radically changes Romulan history that just doesn't seem realistic. It's too bad - the Romulans as presented in the Original Series were fascinating characters who had both honor and deviousness. The Romulans in Rihannsu have little of either.

5-0 out of 5 stars Rihannsu: The Blood Wing Voyages
This is a fantastic, and invaluable book for any who would like to learn about the deep and intricate culture of the Romulan Star Empire. The Star Trek universe is largely devoid of info on Romulans and this work does for the Romulans what was done for the Klingon race through out the 1980's. The book even goes so far as to establish "Romulan-isims" with a word glossary in the back.

5-0 out of 5 stars Ri'hannsu: The Bloodwing Voyages (Star Trek)
Diane Duane is simply the best writer in the Star Trek universe.Every novel she has written has been exciting, engrossing, and entertaining.With her, you gain a keen insight into the minds and histories of all aspects of our favorite Universe - the crew of the Enterprise, the other members of the Federation, the Vulcans, and in this series, the Ri'hannsu (Romulans).One should read everything she writes; you won't be able to put them down.She makes it very real, and she has the skill to make readers believe that they are there.She is exacting in her research (she accurately conforms to the ST series) and science, physicists will appreciate her details, but she makes it understandable to the scientifically challanged. She is also a brilliant psychologist and political analyst.She can even make her villians likeable and well-rounded.Her books are better than chocolate.

2-0 out of 5 stars Not Star Trek
I really hate it when authors make substantial changes to the Star Trek universe and call it Star Trek.The timeline in this book doesn't match the established timeline from the series and movies, too much emphasis is placed on new and unlikely characters, way too much of the story takes place in the recreation room (so as to give time to a new character), and too much emphasis is placed on using Romulan - excuse me, Rihannsu - terms to the point that our historical heroes don't even call the home planet Romulus (yet they start doing it again in the Next Generation?).Also, the story moves so slowly that you need the 4-book anthology for anything to ever really happen.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Better Romulans
Very well wrtitten and with good plots, it's the book all the Romulans loving people should read. ... Read more

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