A Woman of the Horseclans by Robert Adams

WOMAN
A Woman of the Horseclans by Robert Adams
Publisher: Mundania Press
Genre: Action/Adventure, Historical, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Full Length (179 pgs)
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Aloe

Condemned by her people, she found a new destiny among the folk of the undying high lord, Milo Morai…

She rode into legend…

Shunned by her own folk as a creature of Evil, Bettylou Hanson found an instant welcome among the people of the Horseclans. Young, healthy, intelligent, and gifted with powerful mindspeak potential, she was everything Milo Morai’s people looked for in a clan member.

But even Milo himself couldn’t have foreseen the powerful role Bettylou was to play in the future of the Krooguh clan. For the frightened girl whom Tim Krooguh had rescued from certain death was destined to become a living legend among the Kindred, a fighter whose courage would rouse the clans against a foul and dangerous foe…

This story is set in a time after the great disasters in cities. Most folks are back to traveling the prairies just like the Indians did years before. Many of the communities have strange religious beliefs and enforce them with iron fists. Bettylou Hanson lives in one of those communities.

Mundania Press is reissuing the Horseclans series (I’m glad!) that was written in the late 1970’s and into the 1980’s. I noticed two things reading this book: The stories reminded me of the Clan of the Cave Bears series; and, the sexual harassment in the communities reminded me of the cases we’re seeing now in the armed services. As much as things change, they really don’t.

I have one thing I’d have suggested to Mr. Adams. Bettylou is just not a name I’d expect to see in this time period. All the men have unusual names; why not do that for his strong female character? It doesn’t affect the story telling, just seemed incongruous to me.

The Elder in the community Bettylou grew up in had the ultimate right to sleep with all the young women as they came of age. If they had the misfortune to get pregnant, they were beaten, made to do the worst jobs and had their hair cut off and their heads are died a brilliant color. They live there until the baby arrives, then the sex of the baby determines if it is added to the community (male) or thrown out (female) with its mother. Nice folks, aren’t they?

In her case, another tribe attacks them and takes her as a hostage. She’s treated with suspicion until they learn about her story and then she’s accepted into the group. I enjoyed watching her grow up and become the warrior woman she turned into. She was married, had more children, watched her husband and children die, and just kept fighting.

The story is fascinating and interesting. Mr. Adams knew how to grab your attention and keep it. I also liked his ending. It’s a bit magical and just the right touch for dear Bettylou.  Reading about strong women characters always makes me happy. I’d suggest you give this series a try.

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