Thraxas and the Dance of Death
by Martin Scott
Review by Steve Sawicki
Baen Mass Market ISBN/ITEM#: 9781416521440
Date: 31 July 2007 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
This is the latest installment in the Thraxas series; number six if I am counting correctly. In a sense it is safe to say that nothing has changed. Thraxas is broke, he's still constantly in trouble with authority, the city of Turai is facing destruction, sorcerers are running loose and chaos seems to follow Thraxas wherever he goes. This time, Thraxas is hired by Lisutaris, the Mistress of the Sky, head of the sorcerers council and heavy drug user. Lisutaris has lost a fairly valuable gem and needs Thraxas to find it. Before you know it, bodies are everywhere, rival sorcerers are popping up out of the woodwork and the Prince is likely to want to see the stolen gem in just a few days so Thraxas needs to find it now. As the case goes from hot to cold to hot again, the pressure rises and Thraxas has to use all of his wits to figure out where this gem is and how it got lost in the first place.
While the book follows the same formula Scott has used for the previous books it's one that works well with the material. In a sense, the characters are established set pieces which the reader has become familiar with and too much change, or even an absence, creates discomfort. The difficulty arrives in trying to figure out when this repetition becomes stale, if ever. There's no reason it should if Scott can maintain his own energy in the writing of these.
I enjoy the Thraxas series. It's a fast paced run through an interesting setting with intriguing and beguiling characters. Thraxas is a hoot. And the supporting cast, whether it's Makri, the half orc bar girl or Gurd, the barbarian bar owner, are worth reading about in their own right.