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News from Glinda's Great Book of Records
River of Blue Fire (Otherland, Volume 2)

1998
Author(s):
Williams, Tad
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Illustrator(s):
Publisher(s):
DAW Books
Genre(s):
Fantasy

Comments:
Tad Williams began his Otherland series with the massive City of Golden Shadow and continues it with the equally hefty River of Blue Fire. Williams says it will require four (big) books to tell his complex, multithreaded tale, and at the rate that the plot of this second novel moves, readers will see what he means. Not that the book is a slow read; in fact, River is as much a suspenseful page-turner as the first book. As River opens, we join up again with the ragtag bunch of searchers trapped in an astoundingly detailed and frightfully dangerous virtual world known as Otherland. Lurking in disguise among the group is the brutally vicious serial killer Dread, trying to find information that will help him overthrow his Grail Brotherhood masters. The group follows a ubiquitous river through world after world, unable to go offline, and subject to the increasingly terrifying certainty that things in this supposedly virtual place are all too real. Meanwhile, Paul Jonas, an amnesic (but somehow pivotal) character fleeing from two sinister beings, finds more and more of his memory as he does his own Huck Finn river trip. As in the first novel, each new world that the characters enter, from Paleolithic Ice Age to something suspiciously like Oz, is fully realized and completely unpredictable.

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