Friday, June 17, 2011

Book Review of 'The Native Star' by MK Hobson

The Native Star was writen by MK Hobson and published by Spectra in August, 2010. It is available for purchase at

Emily Edwards is a witch, whose business is poultices and magic draughts. And business is not booming thanks to a rival, mass-producing company. On top of that, Emily’s ‘Pap’ is ailing and she is worried that she won’t be able to make ends meet.
Although she is hesitant, Emily crafts a love spell for Dag Hanson, the most prosperous lumberman in the village, hoping for salvation in a good marriage. But the spell goes wrong and Dag is instantly smitten… and not in a good way. Then, bad goes to worse as Emily and the snobbish warlock, Dreadnought Stanton, are called on to attempt to incapacitate the magicked, reanimated zombies that work the mines nearby. In her attempt to control the zombie miners, Emily inadvertently touches a strange gemstone that becomes immovably imbedded in her palm. This ‘Native Stone‘, it is soon discovered, is made of a rare element and possess incredible power to absorb magic, which explains the zombie attacks. Stanton makes Emily an offer she can’t refuse and they are off on a wild ride to find out the secrets of the stone and its powerful draw. What they find are nasty sangrimancers, religious zealots and power-hungry warlocks who all want a piece of Emily and the stone. Emily and Stanton must find a way to harness the stone’s powers and save the world.
M.K. Hobson has set this story in an alternate version of America and has given it a ‘steampunk’ feel, with magical, fantasy-like scenes from the Old West. She has detailed this magic place with delicious descriptions of several classes of witches, who are all very powerful. Her main characters are thoroughly enjoyable, as they deal with human emotions and shortcomings. The secondary characters are varied and believable, with their own ticks and quirks, which add to the fantasy feel of the story.
The settings, the characters and the unusual situations in The Native Star, make it a world of magic and a book not to be missed. I'm giving The Native Star a 4 spidar rating and suggesting it to anyone who loves a great fantasy adventure story.

DJ Weaver

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