Ace Oct 2002, 14.00, 368 pp.
In Naskeag Falls, Maine, Maureen Pierce is thought of as the mad one who talks to trees and receives responses from the woody dwellers. She attended a four-year college but works at a menial job while her sister went to a technical school and makes a good living with benefits. Maureen is afraid of men so when one follows her home one night, she is grateful for the intervention of Brian Albion.
Maureen doesn't know that Brian is a Pendragon, a being whose job it is to keep apart the world of the Old Ones separate from that of the humans. Brian realizes that Maureen is an Old One and that the being who tried to abduct her was trying to take her back to The Summer Country where he can take her for a mate. Maureen doesn't believe him so that when another old one uses glamour to seduce her into coming to THE SUMMER COUNTRY, she eagerly goes. Her sister follows her there along with Brian and Jo's boyfriend. That is when the battle between good and evil really begins.
This stand alone novel is a rich and deeply textured high fantasy novel that will appeal to readers who want to visit a land that never was but should have been. Maureen is an interesting protagonist who doesn't fit in the human world but is right at home in THE SUMMER COUNTRY. It's hard to believe this is James A. Hetley's first novel because it is so well constructed, colorful and imaginative that it seemingly defies the laws of writing as only a seasoned vet could have written this.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner