Glass Thorns - Window Wall (Book Four) by Melanie Rawn

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Glass Thorns - Window Wall (Book Four) by Melanie Rawn

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Buy Glass Thorns - Window Wall (Book Four) by Melanie Rawn at Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Category: Fantasy
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Ani Johnson
Reviewed by Ani Johnson
Summary: A fourth outing for the Elizabethanesque fantasy world of the Touchstone Players gathers strength and brings us more innovation than perhaps we thought it had left in it. Satisfyingly and intriguingly enthralling with the promise of more to come.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 368 Date: April 2015
Publisher: Titan Books
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1781166666

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The Touchstone Players begin another season but, once again it differs from previous years. Now each of the quartet have become or are about to become fathers; all apart from Cade that is. He still has to find that special person but isn't particularly looking as he has problems of his own. His kid brother Derien is starting to come into his own magical gifting which could potentially attract the wrong attention. Cade's elsewhens (his visionary glimpses of possible futures) have also stopped; or rather he has chosen to thwart them. Meanwhile there has been an accident badly maiming Jez, one of Mieke's brothers. At least everyone believes it's an accident until Mieke finds something suspicious in the debris.

By the end of Glass Thorns 3 I feared that the series was running out of steam. However I needn't have worried; Window Wall (Book 4) shows that American author Melanie Rawn still has plenty of puff.

Yes, this is written around another season for the chaps of Touchstone so there's the competition between theatre companies we've seen before and the preparation for the royal tour. This time, though, the mischievous Melanie has thrown in new revelations and situations to spice things up.

For instance Derien opens up a whole new ball game by coming of age magic-wise and in the form that his gifting takes. The lads' manager Lord Kearney Fairwalk (oh yes, the author can melifluise a name!) also presents the chaps with a dilemma.

Ok, Cade may start rejecting his elsewhens but to be honest that's a bit of a non-story considering his later decisions and the recurring theme of a disaster that could occur while resonating with a happening in our own recent history. The elsewhen rejection does give him a reason for a great heart to heart scene with Mieke though – more of that later.

Back at the history resonances, Melanie may be on an Elizabethan vibe with Touchstone but it's also a product of our time as we witness questions relating to themes like ID theft. Another thing to watch out for is the most wonderful switch of expectations surrounding a touring European theatre company. I shall reveal no more! Meanwhile the Shakespearian riff continues with discussions on religious freedom and there are some delicious baddies lurking to raise the ante somewhat.

Playwright Cade and Mieke the elf with the touch for magical glass tubes do seem to be stepping towards the centre stage as their colleagues become a supporting cast in many ways. However, as we watch their relationship evolve that doesn't feel like a hardship. Although still both addicted to the narcotic-filled coloured glass thorns of the series' title, they're trying hard to be more honest (that heart to heart I mentioned) and to find their true selves beneath the public faces.

Indeed there is much to keep us glued to and fearful for our heroes as well as those they love. That's just as well really since there's a fifth book in the offing soon and, considering where Book 4 leaves us, my finger nails won't survive a long hiatus.

(Thank you good folks of Titan Books for providing us with a copy for review.)

Further Reading: It goes without saying that Book 1, Book 2 and Book 3 all come recommended and should be read first. If you've already trod the boards all the way through and enjoy fantasy with a historical lilt, we also highly recommend Promise of Blood (Powder Mage Trilogy) by Brian McClellan.

Buy Glass Thorns - Window Wall (Book Four) by Melanie Rawn at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Glass Thorns - Window Wall (Book Four) by Melanie Rawn at Amazon.co.uk


Buy Glass Thorns - Window Wall (Book Four) by Melanie Rawn at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Glass Thorns - Window Wall (Book Four) by Melanie Rawn at Amazon.com.

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