Amber Benson & Christopher Golden,
Ghosts of Albion #2: Witchery
(Del Rey, 2006)

Witchery, the second book (and possibly the last, given the three-year publishing gap since its release) in the Ghosts of Albion series by Amber Benson and Christopher Golden, ramps up the terror quite a lot.

Young women, both mortal and faerie, are being stolen away or killed in the forests of Cornwall. William and Tamara Swift, the magically gifted Protectors of Albion, and their allies -- including the ghosts Bodicea, Byron and Nelson, and the vampire Nigel Townsend -- are hard pressed to figure out the source of evil ... particularly when William's attentions are distracted by his needy future bride, Sophia, and his fruitless search for a cure for his demon-possessed father.

I shan't reveal the architects of evil in the book, but I will say that every time they made their presence known, particularly when in pursuit of one of their victims, I was unsettled. Perhaps even tense. By the end, my nerves were a little raw, so much so that even a glimpse into the echoes of ancient Camelot failed to ease them.

Damn, this book is DARK, and its abrupt ending trebled the level of horror, at least. But that doesn't mean Witchery is not without a sense of humor and romance, either. I find myself genuinely liking and caring for these characters, which makes it all the more troubling that no third book from the series has appeared on the horizon. Let's hope Benson and Golden have just had a lot of other projects on their mind and that they'll return to Albion soon.

Editor's note: Christopher Golden graciously replied to my query but, unfortunately, said he and Amber Benson have no plans to revisit the Ghosts of Albion series any time soon. Drat!

review by
Tom Knapp

22 August 2009

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