Customer Review

35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An interesting approach of magic., 29 April 2002
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This review is from: The Barbed Coil (Paperback)
The Barbed Coil is a stand-alone novel telling the story of Tessa McCamfrey, a young woman from san Diego.
One day, to flee her responsibilities, she takes her yellow Honda Civic and drives without stopping until she comes to a clearing in the Cleveland National Forest. There among the trees are piles of safe deposit boxes, and a intricate, mysterious golden ring. As she puts it on, she's transported into another, exotic world.
More exactly in Bay'Zell, a port city of the province of Rhaize. Bay'Zell is a dangerous place for a young woman on her own and soon she finds herself harassed by two rogues. Fortunately, a piratical but handsone man named Ravis comes to her rescue and decides to take her under his wing.
Quickly she learns more about the continent on which she's just landed: Izgard of Garizon, the bearer of the Coil, is about to invade Rhaize to gain access to the sea. With the help of his monstruous horde of Harras, he's slaughtering all who stand in his path to quench the Barbed Coil's thirst for blood. And so Berick of Thorn, who conquered Garizon fifty years ago, is slain. His son Camron will hire Ravis to get revenge and assassinate Izgard.
Tessa finds herself caught up in these events. Taking refuge in Emith and his mother's cosy cottage, she'll soon realise she also has a part to play. Emith, who was Deveric, the late king's counselor and scribe's devoted assistant before he too was murdered, starts teaching her the art of painting illuminations, as patterns are the catalyst of this world's magic. But his skills are limited, and he sends her to the Annointed Ilse, where his former master Avaccus lives.
The Barbed Coil is a good, fast-paced adventure novel. I was a bit skeptical at first, but as the story flowed, I started to grow fonder of the characters, particularly of Emith and his mother, and of Angeline too, Izgard's courageous young wife. J. V. Jones's elaborate decriptions of the use of pigments and vellums are passionating and the gathering of momentum at the end is most suspenseful. I even caught myself holding my breath as I ploughed through the last pages.
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Location: Lausanne, Switzerland

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