Zan-Gah and the Beautiful Country (Zan-Gah series - Book 2) by All Richard Shickman
(For review from Earthshaker Books)
Zan-Gah and the Beautiful Country picks up some time after the first book ends. Zan-Gah has married the grand-daughter of Aniah, a great man within the Ba-Coro tribe. His brother, Dael is still suffering from the effects of his captivity with the Noi people. He has married the healer, Lissa-Na, and she is able to keep him calm for a time. When she dies during child birth. Dael loses both his wife and child and is plunged deeper into depression and dark thoughts.
Dael convinces Zan-Gah and his wife Pax, along with some other friends to try to find the source of the river Nobla, something he has always been fascinated by. But, as he nears the land of occupied by their enemies the Wasp People, Dael becomes more and more adamant about seeing what the Wasp people are up to. Zan-Gah is hesitant but finally goes along with Dael, knowing he isn't exactly in his right mind. They are stunned to find that the Wasp people have succumbed to disease and have died out, except for one woman.
Zan-Gah encourages the rest of the Ba-Coro tribe to make the long arduous journey to the country of the Wasp people which Zan-Gah calls the Beautiful Country, because of it's abundance of food and grasses. It is just what his people need to have an easier existence. But, will Dael's condition cause problems for the Ba-Coro? Will Zan-Gah's hidden love for the deceased Lissa-Na threaten his marriage to Pax? Will Dael finally recover from his mental anguish?
This is the second adventure of Zan-Gah. It is a great YA adventure that appeals to adults as well. It may be more suited to boys than girls, since it is an adventure story, but I think it will definitely draw in both. In this book we Zan-Gah becoming a man of importance within the tribe he was able to unite in the first book. They listen to him when suggests a big move and follow his guidance. Dael is still a very big influence in his life and it is hard for him to choose between protecting his brother or his tribe.
We also see him struggle in his marriage as he decides where his loyalties lie. Dael continues to plague Zan-Gah at every turn. He has even gone so far as to distinguish himself physically from Zan-Gah. This book basically continued the same themes from the first book, but delved a bit more into maturity and making hard decisions.
Zan-Gah and the Beautiful Country is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.
I give this one 4 out of 5 apples from my book bag!