Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Witchmark by C.L. Polk

Witchmark is the tale of Dr. Miles Singer, secretly a witch who uses his forbidden powers clandestinely to heal people. It is set in an other world modeled after Edwardian England, where there is a great war ongoing between Aeland and Laneer, and the otherworldly beings called Amaranthines have sent a representative to Aeland to figure out what is happening to all the souls of the dying. Dr. Miles Singer was originally Sir Christopher Miles Hensley, part of the (hidden) elite who manage Aeland, who turned his back upon his family (including his sister, to whom he was supposed to be attached as a secondary magical power) and his position in society in order to serve in the war and become a doctor. In Witchmark he develops a quick romance with the Amarathine Tristan Hunter. Witchmark was nominated for Nebula Award, and a Lambda Literary Award (for LGBTQ content), and won the World Fantasy Award for Novel. It's a pleasant read, with not very involved world-building and not very well-drawn characters, and it should not in my view have been a candidate for any major awards. There are two sequels (so far) that I do not feel in at all inspired to read.

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