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Minerva Wakes Mass Market Paperback – December 1, 1993


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Baen (December 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671722026
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671722029
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 4.2 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,953,019 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Holly Lisle has been doing the pro novelist gig since 1992.  Prior to that, she was an on-again, off-again missionaries' kid, high-school entrepreneur, and once past graduation, a newspaper ad rep, a sign-painter/commercial artist, the "window girl" at a McDonald's, a guitar teacher for absolute beginners, a singer at local restaurants, and because all of those together paid starvation wages, she went to nursing school the next year, and two years later was an RN.

For ten years.  

She paid off her student loan the same year she got her first three-book contract, and...well...she's been writing for her supper ever since.

She is active online, providing courses teaching what she has discovered about writing fiction as well as maintaining her own weblog and website, HollyLisle.com. And with more than a million books in print via commercial publishers, she has now moved to publishing herself.

More About the Author

Holly Lisle has been writing fiction professionally since 1991, when she sold FIRE IN THE MIST, the novel that won the Compton Crook Award for best first novel. She has to date published more than thirty novels and several comprehensive writing courses. She is currently working on the second book in her Cadence Drake series.

Holly had an ideal childhood for a writer...which is to say, it was filled with foreign countries and exotic terrains, alien cultures, new languages, the occasional earthquake, flood, or civil war, and one story about a bear, which follows:

"So. Back when I was ten years old, my father and I had finished hunting ducks for our dinner and were walking across the tundra in Alaska toward the spot on the river where we'd tied our boat. We had a couple miles to go by boat to get back to the Moravian Children's Home, where we lived.

"My father was carrying the big bag of decoys and the shotgun; I was carrying the small bag of ducks.

"It was getting dark, we could hear the thud, thud, thud of the generator across the tundra, and suddenly he stopped, pointed down to a pie-pan sized indentation in the tundra that was rapidly filling with water, and said, in a calm and steady voice, "That's a bear footprint. From the size of it, it's a grizzly. The fact that the track is filling with water right now means the bear's still around."

"Which got my attention, but not as much as what he said next.


" 'I don't have the gun with me that will kill a bear,' he told me. 'I just have the one that will make him angry. So if we see the bear, I'm going to shoot him so he'll attack me. I want you to run to the river, follow it to the boat, get the boat back home, and tell everyone what happened.'

"The rest of our walk was very quiet. He was, I'm sure, listening for the bear. I was doing my damnedest to make sure that I remembered where the boat was, how to get to it, how to start the pull-cord engine, and how to drive it back home, because I did not want to let him down.

"We were not eaten by a bear that night...but neither is that walk back from our hunt for supper a part of my life I'll ever forget.

"I keep that story in mind as I write. If what I'm putting on paper isn't at least as memorable as having a grizzly stalking my father and me across the tundra while I was carrying a bag of delicious-smelling ducks, it doesn't make my cut."

Cheerfully,
Holly Lisle

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 30, 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Anyone who has ever felt himself drowning in all the mundane details of life can appreciate the dilemma the Kiakras face in "Minerva Wakes." They used to dream of artistic success--Darryl as a playwright, Minerva as a painter--but what with one thing and another, they've slowly let those dreams fade away. What they do not know is that the fate of another world is magically linked to those dreams, and that world is slowly dying...and some of its denizens would like to hasten its (and/or their) demise.
The story is a bit formulaic: magical kingdom put at risk, family members kidnapped, the Chosen One(s) must fight the evil demon to rescue their loved ones and Put Things Right. However, in a wryly humorous twist on on the formula, the Chosen Ones are _not_ the children who, due to their innocence and lack of adult cynicism, have little trouble Believing in the fantasy world--it's the world-weary _parents_ who must rescue the children, this time.
"Minerva Wakes" is good wish-fulfilment reading for anyone who despairs of having grown up into a world of unrelenting stress on the job, stress providing for the family, stress keeping a relationship together, and so forth, and wishes he could just leave it all behind and escape to a world where dreams really do come true. While this is not the best-written book I have ever read, the wry sense of humor with which Holly Lisle takes on everyday life makes it an amusing, whimsical, and all-in-all worthwhile read.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Shanshad VINE VOICE on September 25, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Minerva and Darryl Kiakra seem like typical hardworking parents. They've had to cut corners on their dreams to afford a house and three kids. They've out grown their youthful daydreams and become cynical in their day-to-day lives. They certainly don't believe in other worlds, legendary creatures or magic rings. But whether they believe in them or not, these things are about to slam into their lives-big time. Suddenly, their kids are stolen away to another world, Minerva is stuck in an alternate dimension, Darryl is stuck with a beer drinking dragon and both the bad guys and the good guys are out to get them. Trouble? You bet!
This whimsical, engaging romp is one of my favorite tales by Holly Lisle. Both Minerva and Darryl are appealing characters that readers can identify with and root for. There is enough humor woven in to keep this story from taking itself too seriously, and to allow the characters to remain human and endearing. Ms. Lisle's strength is really in her characters. In all her stories she manages to create people to care about and want to know more about. Without that characterization and sense of humor, this tale would be fairly pedestrian and forgettable. The basic plot elements are familiar-mystical rings, dragons, worlds in jeopardy, a reluctant hero and heroine-but Ms. Lisle manages to keep her tone fresh and compelling despite the clichéd fantasy themes. The secondary characters of the three Kiakra children and Birkwelch, the off-color ditty-singing dragon, help to round out the cast and keep the adults from taking themselves too seriously. Birkwelch is perhaps my favorite creation in this story. He's lewd and sings off-key, but he's also the best ally that the Kiakras have in their fight to save their children and themselves.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Edwin B. Burgess on March 15, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
When Minerva and Darryl Kiakra start experiencing unconventional visions, such as a dragon stealing cereal form Minerva's grocery cart, the two apparently ordinary mortals are on a roller coaster of self-discovery. When their three children are kidnapped by the personification of chaos and destruction, it's time to shake off the blinders and realize that they have a higher destiny than writing ad copy and grocery shopping. A cheerful effort that doesn't strain the reader. Waht serious or thought-provoking content there is deals with the loss of youthful ambition and the truly dismaying process of being a responsible adult. Fun; light reading that won't change your life but will cheer up a long evening.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Doug Dandridge on June 8, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Minerva Wakes is one of Holly Lisle's best. Again the characters are memorable and well developed. Birkwlech the Dragon steals the show. I loved this book, and found myself rapidly cycling between the adventure and the humor of Minerva's quest to rescue her children and the Universe in the process. Original fantasy at its best.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 4, 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is my favorite type of book - mixing modern life with magic. Minerva's life has become ordinary and then she is thrown into the middle of a magical adventure that will test her to the max. It's the kind of book that reminds me of my dreams, and that I can reach for them!
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