The hot-tempered, impulsive swordswoman Thorn has gotten pregnant. The gentle, celibate sorceress Frostflower wants a child, and can bring a baby from conception to birth in an afternoon. Though the pacifistic sorcerers are feared and hated outside their mysterious mountain retreats, Frostflower persuades the suspicious warrior to let her magick the baby to term. But when the sorceress's actions arouse the wrath of the ruling priests, Frostflower and Thorn find themselves outlaws under a death sentence.
I know I've come across short stories by Phyllis Ann Karr before, but this was the first novel I'd read by her. An early entry into the sword-and-sorceress genre, it's a tale about two very different women: Thorn, a foul-mouthed, sex-loving, polytheistic warrior - and Frostflower, a virginal, vegetarian, monotheistic sorceress. With the topics of abortion and religion featuring significantly in the plot, I kept worrying that the story would veer into moralizing - but it gracefully steered clear, maintaining a respect for both women and their different points of view, while telling a fun and entertaining story.
Risa M. reviewed Frostflower and Thorn (Frostflower, Bk 1) on
I only managed to get about halfway through this...it really wasn't what I expected, which is why the low score. It had a rather pessimistic note to the story, but was DEFINITELY well-written. I think it's one of the first swordswoman&sorceress novels that hit the market; if you like Card's style in the Alvin Maker series, you'll probably like this.