Apparently I was on a huge Mercedes Lackey kick in June, which is kind of funny because I just read a bunch of her Valdemar novels early last year.
I blame Spy, Spy Again, the third of the “Family Spies” trilogy (?) that came out in 2020 that I somehow missed. After reading that, I wanted to re-read a bunch about Mags, who is a fun character. Also, Beyond was due out in mid-June, and that was the start of a brand new trilogy that would be dealing with the founding of Valdemar. I knew I was going to be reading that, so I figured I’d just brush up on some of the rest again.
Beyond was a pretty good read, but kind of a weird departure from the rest of the Valdemar books. For one thing, there were f-bombs, which I’ve never seen before in a Valdemar book. The tone of the writing was way more modern than the other Valdemar books have been. The Big Bad of the story was a glaringly obvious Trump parody. One of the characters was sharing a magic version of cat macros at the dinner table. There was Internet speak, like “pupper” and “doggo.”
None of this was bad, it just wasn’t what I was expecting from a Mercedes Lackey Valdemar book. Lackey says she still writes all her own books, but if I didn’t know that, I would guess this book was ghost written by someone who had a fairly good handle on Valdemar and Lackey’s general writing voice.
The book also powered through the plot with alacrity. Like, it knew where it wanted to be by the end and it was by god going to get there, so hang on because we aren’t stopping to look at any sights. The plot itself tended a bit towards the simplistic and unsubtle, even for Valdemar.
All said and done, it was a fun, if different, read. Lots of funny stuff, good characters, and nicely set up for the next two books, which should be out in the next fifteen or twenty minutes, considering how fast Mercedes Lackey writes.
- Spy, Spy Again, Mercedes Lackey
- Foundation, Mercedes Lackey
- Intrigues, Mercedes Lackey
- Changes, Mercedes Lackey
- Redoubt, Mercedes Lackey
- Bastion, Mercedes Lackey
- Closer to Home, Mercedes Lackey
- Closer to the Heart, Mercedes Lackey
- Closer to the Chest, Mercedes Lackey
- Arrows of the Queen, Mercedes Lackey
- Arrow’s Flight, Mercedes Lackey
- Arrows Fall, Mercedes Lackey
- Winds of Fate, Mercedes Lackey
- Winds of Change, Mercedes Lackey
- Winds of Fury, Mercedes Lackey
- Storm Warning, Mercedes Lackey
- Storm Rising, Mercedes Lackey
- Storm Breaking, Mercedes Lackey
- Beyond, Mercedes Lackey