Book Diary: Moira J. Moore – Heroes at Odds

Heroes at Odds by Moira J. MooreThis is the sixth novel in Moira J. Moore’s Lee and Taro series – or Shield and Source series, or Heroes series. Like the series never seems to manage to quite decide what genre it is, there also seems to no agreement on what it’s actually called. The former I actually consider an asset, because it makes the series unique – it mixes (if not always blends) Romance, Fantasy and Science Fiction elements. It obviously did not help her sales, however, and likely neither did the notoriously inappropriate covers for every single of the six volumes. Apparently Moira J. Moore’s publisher didn’t have any clear idea what to do with the series either, and so one probably should not have been surprised that they dropped it unfinished after this installment. Which is a pity, because even though Moore might not re-invent any of the genres she plays with, the series has considerable charm – not an exciting read, but a very pleasant one.

Heroes at Odds comes down heavy on the Fantasy side of things, with our protagonists still staying in the Duchess of Westsea and chiefly busy with fending off the attacks of a greedy neighbour who wants the Duchy for himself and is using magic-wielding minions to get it. This volume doesn’t advance the general plot by much but does manage to set things up for the final installment in an entertaining manner, and even though some bad things happen, the mood is overall lighter than in the rather gloomy previous volume.

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5 comments

  1. That’s such a shame that they dropped the series, if only one more book would have finished it off! Not only are they letting the author down, but they’re letting the readers down too. I was amused by your comment on the covers – always a bugbear of mine. Knowing nothing about the book or series, I would think from what I can see of the cover here that it was some kind of Georgian-period adventure novel, maybe leaning slightly more towards the YA end of the spectrum, but presumably I’m entirely wrong. *Why* do publishers do this?

  2. I’m not sure either, but it seems to be common for publishers to make three-book contracts with authors, so I guess they just stopped after the second of those ran out. The series isn’t characterized by particularly strong world-building, but I for one always got a Victorian vibe from the novels, while the covers are mostly Georgian / Regency style. You can see all of the covers here – even those that aren’t plain horrible just do not fit the novels at all (there are no pirates in Heroes Adrift, as fun as that volume otherwise is).

    Thankfully, after some prodding by her fans, Moira J. Moore self-published the final volume – a (short) post on that will hopefully be coming up some time next week. She is also working on a new novel which I’m looking forward to.

    (And yes, there’s a veritable flurry of activity on here at the moment – the purpose of this blog is chiefly for me to keep track of my reading, and I’m no less than twenty-seven volumes behind right now, so I’m getting somewhat desperate to catch up.)

  3. Ah, thank you for that link. That was very amusing. Shame about Heroes Adrift. I do like her blouse. Maybe not so much the leather waistcoat; but that is a fine blouse. I wish I’d been old enough in the 80s to wear stuff like that; back then one could probably have got away with it, whereas now it’d just be too obvious that there was thwarted pirate ambition underneath…

    I’m glad there is a happy ending, in that you’ll get to find out the conclusion of the story. That is good news.

  4. I have to admit, I rather like the cover for Heroes Adrift and would love to read the novel it was made for, which just can’t have been the one it’s actually on the front of…

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