by Michelle Stettler-Gill, Books Editor
Miserere is the debut novel by writer Teresa Frohock, a complex world done in parallel to earth referred to as Woerld. The novel is not so subtle in its religious overtones, in Woerld all of earth’s religions exist in intertwined harmony united in their fight against Hell. The Fallen Angels in Hell are in constant battle to enter into Woerld and through it, gain entrance to earth. At the start of the book one is dropped into the tale, no real introduction of the universe except what clues are dropped in passing. Some reviews deem this as a fault, as if the common reader can’t grasp this complexity. I must say that this is not my first science fiction novel and being a gamer, dropping me into a foreign universe is not so unsettling to me. Suffice to say it was not so confusing as to need a compendium, the quantity of main characters was limited at first and alignments were clearly delineated. Your average reader that lacks experience in science fiction novels may find it a bit distracting but probably not enough to put the book down.
Frohock’s story is a gripping one, her characters filled with deep emotions and political intrigue not uncommon in religious hierarchy. There are book s that need insiders guides and while I don’t think this is one of them the series may have the potential to get there. The author seems to be trying to keep thing as parallel to earth as possible while still keeping it unique, this helps. Once she deviates though I suspect it will become more complicated. Pure speculation only though since she has yet to publish the next in the series. I do hope she continues though, it’s a very promising work and I’m curious to see what is next. The story leaves off in a very interesting point with a ‘mission completed’ feel but that was only one battle in what will probably be a crusades type war.
ComicsOnline gives Miserere, an Autumn Tale 4 out of 5 swords
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