Ian Healy and I go way back, so I have watched his talents evolve from a fellow writer nerd in junior high into the prolific, entertaining author he is today. It’s a thrill to be able to enjoy his work and I am more than happy to spread the news to all my nerdy readers and encourage them to read his work too. That being said, I’m not just being nice because he’s a friend. He’s actually really good, and his recent superhero story, The Archmage, is no exception to this rule.
The main quality of Ian’s books that is consistent across the multiple genres he writes in is twofold: one, he has a delightful balance of humor in his work. He’s witty when it’s appropriate and makes it easy to laugh with him. Two, his characters are incredibly round and realistic.
The Archmage is the sequel to Just Cause, the wonderful superhero story he toured recently. I have reviewed that one here as well. We join Mustang Sally very soon after the events of Just Cause, and are plunged immediately into tense mystery solving balanced with YA relationship drama, that’s actually compelling for an adult, as well as being a good model for a teen reader.
The characters are richly varied by superpower and culture, and the central character being a teenage woman is such a refreshing change from comics and other superhero fare. The story is page-turning, edge of the seat stuff, and the time travel bit was some of the most gripping I’ve read since Tim Powers.
Bottom line: I highly recommend The Archmage. Fun stuff. ~Prof. Jenn