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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Minerva Wakes

****½ Minerva Wakes by Holly Lisle. Contemporary fantasy.

I first discovered Holly Lisle through her romantic suspense--I loved Midnight Rain (#2) and Last Girl Dancing (#24), and have been slowly collecting her backlist ever since.

Minerva and Darryl Kiakras are like a lot of us: they're married, with kids, and they've grown up. They've done what we pretty much expect to do when we grow up and become parents: put away their dreams (Minerva's of being a painter and Darryl's of being a playwright), and started taking life seriously.

But then they start seeing things that aren't--can't--be there, and their children disappear, and it turns out that their dreams are more important than they'd realized. There's a world linked to ours that depends on those dreams, and to get their children back, Minerva and Darryl have to reawaken their dreams and rebuild their partnership.

The premise is almost too sweet--giving up your dreams is A Bad Thing--but it's redeemed by the sheer exuberance of the story. Minerva in particular is a real, believable character, a woman who's very familiar. The story is action-filled and suspenseful, but it's lightened by a healthy dose of humor--much of it in the form of the dragon Birkwelch.

Minerva Wakes would make a fabulous movie--particularly the scenes where Minerva is stuck in the alternate world and she and Darryl are trying to work together to rescue the kids and escape.

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Sounds great Darla. Thanks for the heads up.
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