Last of the High Kings by Kate Thompson

June 30, 2009 at 8:49 pm Leave a comment

kingsThis sequel to Thompson’s magicaly musical The New Policeman finds fiddler JJ Liddy fifteen years removed from his adventure into Tir Na Nog.  Married now, with three children and a wildly successful concert career playing tunes he learned from the Fairies, JJ is yet troubled by the way his life has unfolded.  He had hoped to make a career as a fiddle maker using the magically resonant chiming wood he had been promised by one of the Fairies.  But the chiming wood had yet to be delivered from Tir Na Nog.  Meanwhile, his daughter Jenny is consorting with a powerful goat on the hillside and conversing with a ghost at the old beacon atop the hill.

Clearly Jenny is not like the other children and before long it is clear that she is of fairie blood and is being used by the Puka (the goat creature) to right an ancient wrong.  But Jenny is not sure who she should help.

Those expecting a reprise of JJ’s adventure in The New Policeman, will find that the Last of the High Kings is more mythical than musical, with ancient gods and forces stuggling to have their way with the fate of Earth.  Thompson weaves a readable and engaging tale based upon Celtic legend.  All that’s missing is the music.

John S.

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