Maurice Gee is one of New Zealand's best-known writers for adults and children. He has won a number of literary awards, including the Wattie Award, the Deutz Medal for Fiction, the New Zealand Fiction Award, the New Zealand Children's Book of the Year Award and the Prime Minister's Award for Literary Achievement. Maurice Gee's children's novels include Salt, The Fat Man, The Fire-Raiser, Under the Mountain and the O trilogy. Maurice lives in Nelson with his wife Margareta, and has two daughters and a son.
This generally well-written, believable fantasy novel is the third volume in the ‘Salt' trilogy by multi-award winning New Zealand author Maurice Gee. As with his two earlier novels in the trilogy, Salt and Gool, it would appeal to both male and female young adults between the ages of 12 and 16 who enjoy reading the adventure/high-fantasy genre popularised by such authors as Ursula Le Guin. Gee's storyline grabs the reader from the opening page. We follow at breakneck pace as the main character Hanna is saved from the evil Limping Man's henchmen by her mother. The plot continues, full of action and violence with somewhat predictable outcomes-the demise of the Limping Man is well sign-posted. However, unlike the ‘Earthsea' trilogy there is not the overall reading satisfaction here, especially given what might be expected in the concluding novel in a trilogy. In fact, the final chapter seems without closure and is quite weak. I would recommend The Limping Man to school and public librarians to purchase and to high school English teachers to suggest to students. Susan Hill has a Masters in Children's Literature and is a secondary English teacher and librarian