redland times

Redland Times: BattleAxe

battleaxe-1steditioncover-TonyPyrzakowskiAustralian author Sara Douglass has written what could be the first of one of the most popular science fantasy trilogies to arrive in the last few years.

BattleAxe has all the ingredients of such fantasies – magic, battles and intrigue as well as the most evil of people and creatures.

What makes it work so well is that Miss Douglass, a lecturer in early modern European history at Bendigo University, understands her characters and makes them very believable.

Axis is the bastard son of a Princess, who has been taken by a religious order and turned into a fighting machine to protect the kingdom – the so-called BattleAxe.

He commands the best fighting force available, while his evil half brother Borneheld bides his time as WarLord.

A thousand years before these people had driven out the ‘others’ – the winged Icarii and the Avar and burned and destroyed the forests these people loved.

Now a new evil comes from the North and is driving these forbidden people before it and back into the Kingdom of Achar.

Axis has a mission to turn back the evil, but on his way to his destiny finds that he himself is more than he realizes.

This is a cracker of a book and instantly lands Douglass among luminaries like Stephen Donaldson and David Eddings.

©1995 Dennis Neville / The Redland Times. Reviewed by Dennis Neville for the The Redland Times, first published on Friday July 28, 1995.This review originally appeared on Sara Douglass’s website in full.