Zarsthor's Bane - Andre Norton, Evan Ten-Broeck Steadman Last Christmas (2012), I purchased seven of the first eight Witch World novels (at my local, still-in-business-as-of-August-2013 used book store) and have endeavored to read them in the subsequent months. I finished the final four in the last month and have been offering brief reviews anent what I enjoyed about them (with the mild criticism lodged here and there). Zarsthor’s Bane was the last book in the pile and – for my money – the weakest, which is why I only gave it two stars. In comparison to [b:Year of the Unicorn|7695111|Year of the Unicorn (Witch World Series 2, High Hallack Cycle, #1)|Andre Norton||2561230] and its companion volumes it was colorless – Norton-by-the-numbers.

Perhaps, though, I was burned out on the author by this point. Were I to come to Bane fresh, after a hiatus, I could be more positive.

So, in light of that, I’m going to recommend the novel to Norton fans, if not to the general public. For the Norton tyro, this is not the book to start with. That would remain – in my opinion – the original [b:Witch World|15840375|Witch World (Book 1)|Andre Norton||1171819] (still the best of the series) or, if you prefer SF, one of the Solar Queen books. (And here’s a nostalgic shout out to older D&D’ers for [b:Quag Keep|2327288|Quag Keep |Andre Norton||648356]. Its sequel, by Jean Rabe, is awful but Norton’s original vision is still interesting and still cries out for a well-written continuation – if I had the guts, the willpower and the patience, maybe I’d try my hand at it. But I don’t so this is a plea for someone, anyone to bring closure to Milo’s, Naile's, Yevele's and the others' story.)