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Hawkmoon: The Sword of the Dawn (Book 3) by Michael Moorcock
Cover Artist: Vance Kovacs
Review by Harriet Klausner
Tor Books Paperback  ISBN/ITEM#: 9780765324757
Date: 03 August 2010 List Price $14.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /

The Soryandum transfers Castle Brass and its occupants into another realm. Without Count Brass and his heroic army to prevent the conquering of the continent by Meliadus and his horde of the Granbretan Empire, they easily march on to victory against those left behind. No one can any longer stop the victorious forces. Though they enjoy the serenity the transported are concerned about what is happening back where they formerly lived as they all expect the worst.

Granbretan bard Elvereza Tozer arrives at Castle Brass. He followed them into this realm using a Yel Mountains crystal that he obtained from Mygan the hermit. Count Brass, Dorian Hawkmoon, and others are concerned that Meliadus will seek out the crystals to follow them into their world and then on to conquer others with his vicious army.

At the same time, Commander Meliadus pleads with Granbretan King-Emperor Huon about the need to follow through with punishing Count Brass, Hawkmoon, and the other occupants of Castle Brass. Huon says no, as they are no longer an issue. Meliadus seeks other influential allies to supersede the monarch. He especially needs scientists Baron Kalan and Taragrom Master of the Palace of Time as they hold the key he believes to follow Hawkmoon wherever his adversary went.

Using crystals, Hawkmoon and D’Averc return to Londra, capital of the evil empire to find out what Meliadus has learned of Mygan. Once assured they know nothing, they travel to find the hermit with Meliadus, aware of their presence, in hostile pursuit. They use a crystal to escape. In Amarekh, Mygan directs Hawkmoon to seek his Runestaff by going to Narleen, find the Sword of the Dawn, and then travel to Dnark.

The third history of the Runestaff/Hawkmoon fantasy thriller switches locations but retains much of the same key players from the first two novels (see The Mad God's Amulet and The Jewel in the Skull). The story line is action-packed and much faster than its precursors as Hawkmoon and D’Averc seem to go from the frying pan to the fire in their effort to prevent the obsessed maniac Meliadus from destroying other existences and more of their base world. The setting makes for a strong saga as Michael Moorcock is vivid in describing what the heroes encounter.

Hawkmoon is a straight forward champion trying to do what he believes is right. His companion on this trek, D'Averc, brings humor and wittiness to the mix. In otherworld, Hawkmoon is sort of like Luke Skywalker and D'Averc is no ordinary sidekick as he is like Han Solo. Together they are a wonderful pairing of opposite temperaments who perfectly complement one another like yin and yang. Ironically on the other hand, the fixated serious Meliadus is closer in his thought processes to Hawkmoon than D’Averc is. Although unlike the first two entries, Hawkmoon does not change much, readers will relish this third tale as the action never stops coming with the Dark Empire ready to expand into other worlds once Europe falls.

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