Bantam, $5.99, ISBN 0-553-57921-5
Paranormal Romance, 2000
My, Legend of the Sorcerer is a good one. Donna Kauffman is obviously on a roll, making herself a name in the paranormal genre. Good for her. If this is what she offers, I’m buying.
It all started when a witch, after reading our hero’s new story about a Dark Pearl, starts to believe that our hero Malacai L’Baan is her one true mate. Cai is a reclusive author of fantasy stories (with surprisingly generic titles – come on, surely the author can do better!) who has no idea that the legend of the Dark Pearl is real and that he has super magical powers. One day he receives an email from this woman asking him if he likes the photos she sent him.
Thing is, Cai receives photographs of a pretty woman posing sexily with towels on the beach, under the sun.
The woman is Jordy Decker, a sculptor suffering from serious lack of ideas. She is still trying to rebuild her career after her partner embezzled everything from their company, and the last thing she needs is to open her photo bag to find photos of a badly beaten woman.
The evil nutcase Margaron demands that Malacai be her bridegroom or the woman would suffer. Jordy decides to lend a hand in saving the world. Cai isn’t too keen, but his all-knowing grandpa Alfred supports her. She is, after all, Cai’s destiny. She even creates the perfect sketches of dragons.
Legend of the Sorcerer is fast-paced with great build-up and an exciting read. I finished it in one setting, and I want more. However, I have two quibbles that prevented it from getting any higher brownie points from me.
One, characterization. I like Jordy, but Cai and Alfred are stereotypical sorts. Especially Alfred, the all-knowing man who knows secrets (hint, hint, Cai isn’t a mere author), who is yet another reincarnation of the valet who is also a spy/the best friend who is also a secret agent/the butler who knows who did it, with little variation to the theme. Cai too is the usual arrogant, aloof hero who – while likeable – is also unexciting because he is so familiar.
Two, the plot, which is nothing more than a catfight for a guy when you get to the root of it. Come on!
Still, these are minor quibbles. Ms Kauffman has a fun, exciting read in Legend of the Sorcerer, and I, for one, is waiting for the next book.