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The war of the flowers
Tad Williams
Adult Fiction WILLIAMS

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Travel into another dimension is a popular fantasy ploy, but rarely accomplished with such humor, terror and even logic as in this stand-alone by bestseller Williams (Tailchaser's Song, etc.). After losing his girlfriend, Theo Vilmos, a singer in a humdrum northern California rock band, finds in his late mother's remote cabin an amazing if incomplete manuscript left by his eccentric great-uncle, Eamonn Dowd, about a fairy world purportedly visited by its author. Unsurprisingly, Faerie turns out to be a real place. Applecore, a short-tempered, red-haired sprite, abruptly appears before Theo just as a horrifying monster starts banging on the door. At Applecore's command, Theo swoops her up and pops through "the Gate" into a magical realm that proves initially beguiling, later strange and finally deadly. Ironically, Faerie is a distorted image of our own world, ruled by cruel fairy tyrants. The powerful classes, each named for a flower, wage war against each other, using colossal dragons as the equivalents of nuclear bombs. Theo discovers love as well as unsuspected secrets of his own birth and family. Williams's imagination is boundless, and if this big book could have been shorter, it could just as easily have been longer. The incorrigible Applecore continually delights, as in her comment on a famous J.M. Barrie character: "`If you believe in fairies, clap your hands'? If you believe in fairies, kiss my rosy pink arse is more like it." (June 3) FYI: Williams is the author of Sea of Silver Light (Forecasts, Apr. 9, 2001) and other titles in his Otherland series. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Struggling rock musician Theo Vilmos has nightmares, a pregnant girlfriend, an aloof mother, and only one good friend-until the bottom falls out of his world, leaving him alone and down on his luck. His discovery of a book written by a long-dead relative launches a series of events that plummet him headlong into the land of Faerie and thrusts him into the middle of a political and social maelstrom. Hunted by the ruling families of Faerie, Theo finds an unlikely ally, a foul-mouthed sprite named Applecore, who introduces him to the complexities of life in another world. As his understanding of the realm's dark secrets grows, Theo becomes caught up in a full-scale revolution that could mean freedom for the downtrodden "lesser" faeries or a gruesome death for himself and, possibly, the end of his world. Williams's latest novel draws on the faerie lore of many nations, putting an intriguing new twist on old legends. Strong storytelling and memorable characters make this standalone cross-world fantasy the author's best work to date and a priority purchase for fantasy collections. Highly recommended. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Theo Vilmos
Age: 30
Expectant father
Member of a small-time band; his girlfriend is expecting a baby; his life is out of control; has never lived up to his potential.

Winged; six inches tall; demanding; smart-mouthed.

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