Riverhead, Feb 2004, 23.95
Wingless librarian Pico is a loner who finds life worth living only in the books that he devours insatiably. He especially finds relearse from his mundane forlorn existence with stories of daring do and adventures of love. Alas his dream is to star in such a tale, but knows this will never pass.
While strolling by the sea, Pico rescues the drowning winged Sisi. They begin seeing one another and quickly fall in love. However, one of the worst taboos that can never be broken is a relationship between winged and wingless. Despondent, Pico learns of the existence of an ancient manuscript THE BOOK OF FLYING that provides detailed instructions on how the land bound can grow wings. However, to obtain the tome, Pico must journey through the dark forest of monsters some disguised as cute and pretty, who will do anything to divert the lad from attaining his dream.
This is an engaging fantasy with a deep message that works on most levels though at times Keith Miller becomes too flowery with his prose. The story line is delightful as the lead couple come across as Romeo and Juliet. As the hero now has a cause to live life to its fullest (one of several solid ideas fostered within the tale), he must contend with vile cretins including some that seem human in appearance, but all share in common that they feel genuine. Fans will enjoy journeying through Miller's Mythos that hopefully will have future treks.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner