Saturday, August 7, 2010

The High King of Montival-S.M. Stirling

The High King of Montival
S.M. Stirling
Roc, Sep 7 2010, $25.95
ISBN: 9780451463524

It has been a quarter of a century since the world was plunged into darkness with electricity and electronic based technology failing. People formed communities to keep safe as mankind returns to the Middle Ages standard of living and society. Rudi Mackenzie traveled from Montival (parts of Oregon and Washington State) to Nantucket where he found the Sword of Lady in the World. He drew it out just like Arthur did Excalibur and it granted him mystical powers that enabled Rudi to become the ruler Artos of Montival when he gets home.

Getting back is just as different as people of different communities look at them at as the enemy. Rudi and his allies have to trust their numbers and strength in the wrecks that was once cities to make better time and fight off groups that want to rule Montival like the leads of Boise and Corwin and the Cutters soldiers of the Church Universal and Triumphant. While back home, the various groups that make up Montival are fighting to maintain their way of life against well trained warriors.

When Rudi takes control of the Sword (see Sword of the Lady), he needed to adapt to a new radical change again while also rallying various groups, many of whom he fought against just a few months ago as the evil enemy threatens their well-being. The High King of Montival is filled with plenty of action, intrigue and a touch of romance. Readers will muse over whether magic or a neo branch of physics has entered the world and what it means as S.M. Stirling provides another fabulous post-apocalyptic thriller to his Change saga (see The Scourge of God and The Sunrise Lands).

Harriet Klausner

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