The Wildcat's Burden by Christopher Hoare -- Book Review
In The Wildcat's Burden by Christopher Hoare, Gisel Matah, is now the military governor of the city of Skrona in liberated Tarnland. Married, and pregnant with her first child, she knows her enemies are waiting for her to go into labor so they can pounce. A leader in a dangerous game that pits Gisel against spies, thieves and murderers, her enemies seek to steal Plan Zero and perhaps rid themselves of the Wildcat for good.
In this well-written fourth installment of the Iskander series, Hoare has given Gisel a new side--that of mother-to-be. Unlike many women in her position, Gisel is not able to sit back and enjoy this time. There are too many issues that need her attention: enemies to thwart, plots to uncover, and peace to keep in a world filled with cheats, liars, spies, and worse. Her husband, Yohan, worries over her, all the while being annoyed, knowing Gisel doesn't share everything with him.
We also meet two other strong women in The Wildcat's Burden: Lizzie and Bluebell. Lizzie's unfolding story is perhaps my favorite, and she is vital in uncovering a plot that could change the world as they know it.
This is the first book of the Iskander series that I've read, but Hoare includes a Foreword that discusses the series up to the point where this book begins, so I didn't feel a bit lost picking up the series with Book 4. Even without the Foreword, The Wildcat's Burden is an excellent stand alone, but it is nice that the author included this for the the reader; especially since there are so many characters to keep track of. Also included is an extensive Afterword that brings the reader into Gisel's future and discusses the unresolved storylines of characters that did not appear in The Wildcat's Burden.
Hoare definitely created an interesting and diverse set of characters in this book. Having not meet Gisel before now, I'm curious to know more about her past and others I met along the way.
While I can't say I would go out of my way to fill my shelves with books of this nature, I enjoyed tackling a genre I rarely read. With The Wildcat's Burden, Hoare has written a science fiction/alternative world story that will draw in lovers of this genre.
Title: The Wildcat's Burden Author: Christopher Hoare Publisher: Double Dragon Publishing ISBN-9: 1-55404-729-3 ISBN-13: 978-1-55404-729-1 SRP: $5.99 Available in multiple electronic formats