Friday, August 17, 2012

Queen of Wands by John Ringo

I liked much of the same aspects of this story as the first novel about Barbara Everette, soccer mom turned supernatural warrior, and I disliked most of the same things, as well. Barb is the only member of the Foundation for Love and Universal Faith (FLUF) who is a born-again, bible thumping, fundamentalist Christian. The rest of the group who fight against the manifestations of evil worldwide are pagans. Ringo even gives Barb a monologue to spout as she and a group of special ops guys are spelunking on their way to destroy the Mother of All Evil about how anyone who truly loves his fellow man and opposes evil is not going to be rejected by the christian God, when all is said and done. The ecumenism is all very kumbaya, but doesn't really accurately reflect theology.

Barb discovers some new gifts in this novel - the ability to see the demons that infest much of the human population on Earth, and the ability to hear their voices, as well. This is balanced by being able to see angels, too. FLUF sends her to Chattanooga to combat an outbreak of madness that appears to be caused by the supernatural, and where her friend Janea, priestess of Freya, encountered something that left her basically in a coma. Barb, and her FBI sidekick must find out who the bad guys are, neutralize them, and figure out how to revive Janea, all without the general public becoming aware of Special Circumstances.

The book has three sections, with the first one being set in Chattanooga, then the middle section appears to take place at DragonCon, but which is actually a supernatural version of the convention, where gods, demigods, and random souls attend. Janea's spirit is sent there to work her way back to consciousness, through truly "finding herself".  The third section deals with a massive threat to the entire country by the Mother of All Evil, who is rapidly producing monster hordes to take over America and eventually overrun the world. The ending is a huge deus ex machina, which was sort of annoying.

I think that Ringo is tired of writing a heroine who doesn't have any sex scenes, as at the very end, Barbara catches her husband in bed with someone when she returns home. I guess this is going to make it all right for her to fool around? Maybe in Ringo's christianity.

Ringo tosses out a little in-joke about his Paladin of Shadows series at one point.

"Fortunately, theres a group of Asatru covering the Caucasus. Led by a demon-possessed former SEAL. Good story...I could write a book. Too tired."

This is a fun book, if you don't think about it too much.

1 comment:

Laying down the Law said...

The first was a fun read, if you go for the premise that Christianity is just another manifestation of the all-in-one universe.
Ringo seems to have serious issues with the male leadership role in a marriage, and what the biblical definition of "submit" means.
Being a former soldier, you'd think that he'd love the idea - it's a Greek military term, "willing submission to a legal and moral authority", just like a soldier gives his leaders, except when they break the rules.