A Wizard Alone (Young Wizards #6) (New Millennium Edition)

A Wizard Alone - Diane Duane

Wow. WOW! Diane Duane does it again. She continually amazes me and I bow down to her brilliance. Her years writing ST fiction really shows and shines in this series, which is far more sci-fi based than fantasy, and takes a more technical approach to wizardry than you'd ever seen in Harry Potter or similar series. Her ability to use prose to paint a picture and gut punch you with emotions is finely honed by this point too, and while these are YA she never talks down to her intended audience and the issues tackled make this series accessible and enjoyable for all ages. Once again, I'm glad I'm reading these now as an adult, because I don't know how much of this would've really sunk in if I'd read this series as a kid. Not that most of these books were even around when I was a kid. ;)

 

We start off this book with the emotional and psychological turmoil that resulted from the events in The Wizard's Dilemma. I wanted to see how the Callahans would cope, I wanted more Kit POV and more about Ponch. I got all that and much, much more. We get a new wizard, Darryl, and while Kit and Nita are originally sent to help him, it's soon apparent that all is not as it seems and that there are more wizards in need of help than Darryl

who is pretty much the only one in the entire book who actually knows what's going on!

(show spoiler)

I had no idea how anything here would be resolved. I was just along for the ride. :D

 

As for the autism aspect, when Duane originally wrote this book in 2002 she came at autism from a medical viewpoint, as something wrong that needed to be fixed. What we knew and understood and accepted about autism then is already largely outdated to what we know about it today, and there's been social pushes and breakthroughs in seeing it not as something that needs to be fixed but accepted and embraced. The edits done to the NME brings much of this up to date, and while there are still a couple of head-tilting moments - usually coming from the neurotypical characters who have no experience with autism and were quickly shown to be in over their heads, but once or twice from the narrative itself - overall I was happy with how it was handled. (Note: I'm not autistic, so I can't and won't speak for anyone who is, so YMMV.)