THE WARDED MAN
Brett makes a strong debut with this
dark fantasy, titled The Painted Man in England. The first book of The Demon trilogy, its highly inventive plot will capture the imagination immediately. This character-based story explores the motivations of the protagonists as they grow and develop. A page-turner with a satisfying climax, it promises much more to come in future books.
When darkness comes, the demons emerge from below ground, attacking and killing until morning light. Magical wards offer some protection, but are often overcome. Eleven-year-old Arlen flees his village after his mother is killed and becomes obsessed with the idea of leading an attack on the demons. Meanwhile, 13-year-old Leesha becomes a healer and Rojer, the survivor of an attack, turns to music. Their fates will become entwined with Arlen's as he grows into a mythical figure painted with wards, a man who stands against the demons. (DEL REY, Mar., 432 pp., $25.00)