The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Real Magic is an Indie Next pick for August 2013! “The great thing about Nora, the titular ‘thinking woman,’ is that she is completely relatable….She brings an analytical eye to a highly stratified, low-tech, but magical place, and by speaking truth to power she learns new lessons about herself. This beautifully written first novel reverberates with echoes of fairy tales and fantasy literature from Narnia to Harry Potter.” —Tonie Lilley, The Regulator Bookshop, Durham, NC
“Nora must find her place in a world where her academic skills, and even the English language, are suddenly useless. She is alternately aided and thwarted by the magician Aruendiel, who can perhaps be best described as an Alan Rickman character when the Harry Potter films meet Love, Actually…. By the end of the novel, readers will feel at home in the alternate universe Barker has created, and their protagonists come to seem like old friends.” —Shelf Awareness
“…As the novel closes, Barker leaves Nora poised on the brink of a decision that could lead to another adventure. This reviewer can’t wait. VERDICT Readers who love magical fantasy adventures with strong female protagonists will enjoy Barker’s novel. And fans of Lev Grossman’s The Magicians may also want to try this.” —Library Journal.