Jan 30, 2013

Esbae

A Winter's Tale
by Linda Haldeman

One of my favorite books is Linda Haldeman's fantasy The Lastborn of Elvinwood. I'll write about that someday- it sits on my shelf so is easily accessible- but this is another by the same author I once found. The story is set in a college town, among a few college students and a professor. There's a spirit from another world that's been exiled- I forget what the reason was- and forced to live on earth until it can be of assistance to someone and thus gain the right to return to its own realm. One of the students does a research paper on rituals used to summon demons, and another kid decides to go ahead and try the summoning. I seem to remember this was more out of boredom or curiosity than malice, although I was horrified that a puppy was going to be used as a sacrifice. The puppy escaped an awful fate, the ritual was botched but a demon shows up regardless and demands that one of the students be sacrificed to make things right. So then they have to figure out how to get out the ensuing mess while appeasing the demon, and in steps the helpful spirit. I remember finding the (sexless) character of the spirit intriguing, also the main character, a female student. But I was a bit disturbed by the romance that grew between the student and one of her professors, and I think that's why this book is no longer in my library.

I just discovered that this author has long since passed away, and only published three books. I've read them all and always was on the lookout for more, but sadly I don't think there are any more to be found. So if I do come across Esbae again I think I will put it back on my shelf. It deserves a re-read.

Rating: 3/5 ........ 224 pages, 1981 ....... find it on Amazon or at Powell's Books

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