"A delightful and whimsical fantasy romance"

Once the Kingdom of Umbria was a peaceful pastoral place where magic healed and helped the people. Then the Han invaded Umbria, destroying its customs and culture, and forbidding magic to be practiced at all. Those who do use magic are shunned by people except when they are needed to heal a hurt. Maura Woodbury, the Enchantress of Windleford, is used to being ignored because she has the love of her mentor the wizard Langbard. One day the wizard tells his ward that she is the Destined Queen who will wake her future husband the Waiting King from his unnatural sleep and then he will deal with the army of occupation.

Before she can adjust to her fate, an outlaw is in danger of being killed by the Han and using magic Maura rescues him. Langbard convinces Ratho accompany Maura to Prum where she will find a map that will lead her to the Waiting King. During the journey, Maura and Rath fall in love but there is nothing they can do about it because her destiny lies in a direction away from him. The Han are aware of their quest and send their most powerful mages and warriors to stop them.

Deborah Hale has written a delightful, exciting and memorable romantic fantasy about a heroine who believes in all the old legends and a hero who believe only in himself. Together they make a powerful fighting force in their quest to rid their country of the conquerors who wish that the pages of THE WIZARD'S WARD. This fantastic novel will also appeal to fans of sword and sorcery novels.

Harriet Klausner

Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted March 15, 2004


Years before, the peaceful world of Umbria was torn apart by the ruthless Hanish invaders . . . Yet that is the only life Maura knows. Until her wizard guardian announces she is to be queen -- but that first she must find and unite with their country's legendary "Waiting King" in order to overthrow the enemy occupation. Men have searched for the fabled warrior for ages -- what chance has a young witch gifted in life-magic? Especially since she has only till midsummer's moon . . .and her guardian's wisdom is tragically taken from her . . .

Filled with fear and determination as well as wits and magic, Maura sets forth. Her only ally is the outlaw Rath. Having Rath as a companion is as dangerous as having an enemy along -- but she must trust in him to save their country. As midsummer approaches, their mission is in jeopardy from the Han outlaws and treasure hunters -- and even their own folk, who are wary of "the witch and the wolf."

But the greatest complication is the knowledge that if they do not find the king, Maura need not sacrifice all to be queen . . .


The Wizard's Ward
by Deborah Hale

April 1, 2004
ISBN #0373802056
448 pages
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Other Books by
Deborah Hale

The Destined Queen
The Last Champion
Beauty And The Baron
Lady Lyte's Little Secret
The Bride of Blackness Castle / A Gentleman of Substance
Border Bride
The Love Match
Carpetbagger's Wife

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