Dy's Take

September 5, 2009

Hand of Isis by Jo Graham

Filed under: Fantasy,Historical Fiction — Dy @ 23:31

( 67 )

I loved Black Ships and rushed out to grab Jo Graham’s 2nd book from the library after reading the first one. And I have to confess, I didn’t like this one as much.

She pulled some concepts, re: reincarnation from the first book, and spent a lot of time building links to her third novel (based on the little preview excerpt at the end of this one) but not enough time making this really stand out on its own, to my mind.

I suspect part of it may just be that I knew going into it more or less how the story would end.  The only new characters she could introduce into such a well-known story were bit players.

The fantasy tag is just for the bits of interaction with the ancient gods and scenes in the afterlife—I don’t read enough magical realism to bother creating a tag, though I suppose that is closer to the right category for this.

I will say, based on the excerpt, I won’t be in a hurry to read her next book.  In both books I’ve thought her male characters were a lot less interesting than, and lacked the depth of, the women. The perspective character in the new one is, as far as I can tell, the same person as in the first two (thank you wonders of reincarnation!) but male this go ’round. I will ~probably~ read it since it deals with the period immediately after Alexander the Great’s death when his empire was divided, which I find interesting, but I doubt I’ll rush to read it.

Still, this was good—better if you’ve never read anything else from the period and are less familiar with the characters, but still pretty good. Just, for me, disappointing after such a great first book.

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