Our world has long been protected by "The Ring" — a benevolent secret society of witches and conjurers dedicated to the continuance and well-being of humankind.
Now, in the face of impending climatic disaster, the Ring has uncovered a conspiracy potentially more destructive than any it has ever had to contend with. For eons, the mages of a neighboring universe have been looting the Earth of ideas, innovations and technologies — all the while manipulating events and creating devastating catastrophes for their own edification. And unless the brazen piracy is halted, our planet is certainly doomed.
Aboard a modified city omnibus, a raiding party of adepts is dispatched to Arth, the stronghold of the interfering Pentarchy — a world ruled by magic, ritual and unbending tradition. And while the Inner Ring on Earth battles spies, traitors and the terrifying sendings of an evil, would-be queen, a motley group of commandoes launches a cynical attack on the virtue of the great citadel of Arth — determined to conquer the mighty fortress through internal dissension, psychological sabotage and kamikaze sex.
But ultimately the destiny of two separate universes is in the hands of a trio of unlikely champions: a dotty old Earth woman, caretaker to many cats and a bizarre, simianlike familiar…a rebellious heir to the Pentarchy, whose birthright enables him to perform astonishing feats, and Zillah, a beautiful but troubled young mother who unknowingly possesses the wildest, strangest, and most powerful magic of all.
A SUDDEN WILD MAGIC is a breathtakingly original, consistently delightful blend of fantasy and SF — a surprising, funny and warmly human adventure of wars, worlds and otherworlds that signals the dazzling emergence of a major new talent in the literary field of the fantastic.
Believing is seeing, as the title of this outstanding collection of fantasies proclaims. And "reading is seeing more than you've ever imagined when in the masterful hands of acclaimed author Diana Wynne Jones. Here are seven tales--seven doorways to bizarre, yet strangely familiar worlds--to transport one and all. In these worlds are a child born to an ordered society but preordained to spread Dissolution . . . a girl who so loves the sun that she renounces her humanity for eternity . . . a cat and a boy, held captive by an evil magician until they can find a bigger magic of their own . . . a woman imprisoned in a strange country dominated by three ravenous wolves . . . and many other characters and stories just as exceptional. These richly drawn, razor-sharp stories showcase the skills and sheer narrative power of one of the most esteemed fantasy writers of our time.