Note: This is the final book in the series, "The Labors of Ki'shto'ba Huge-Head." Good news! Lorinda wasn't ready to leave her termite world, so a sequel to the series is now available. I'll post information about the new book, "The Ship Buried at the End of the World," on Tuesday.
The Revenge of the Dead Enemy by Lorinda J. Taylor
(The Labors of Ki'shto'ba Huge-Head, Volume Six)
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Buy on Amazon
So you think you can't empathize with a giant termite? We've had many insectoid and arachnid heroes in literature. Consider "Charlotte's Web." If you didn't get teary-eyed when Charlotte died, then you must have a heart of stone. Other stories empathetic toward multi-legged creatures: Ant Bully, It's a Bug's Life, Bee Story. I'm sure there are others. I don't usually seek out books about bugs, but I could come up with these examples in a few seconds.
So, what about the entire epic journey "The Labors of Ki'sh'toba: Volumes 1-6?" I have previously reviewed 1-5, not to mention the 2-volume "Termite Queen" saga. I liked them...a lot. I continually complained about the difficult names, places, and concepts with the conlang (constructed language) of the Termite world. Too many apostrophes and a bunch of other punctuation I have no clue how to pronounce.
I will complain no more. I still can't pronounce 90% of the termite language, but I can visually recognize the names of the main characters. All have become familiar and lovable in their own ways. Di'fa'kro'mi, the Remembrancer (storyteller) is quite an adept author considering he had to invent a written language in which to tell the tales. I know, the real Remembrancer is Lorinda Taylor, but she is such a wonderful writer, I was immersed in the stories as if they were really told by Di'fa'kro'mi.
As I did when first reading "Charlotte's Web," I wept over the death of some of my favorites throughout the entire six volumes. I cried for termites? Yes, I did, and I'm not ashamed.
The entire tale of Ki'shto'ba and his labors (modeled on the Greek Hercules myth) is hard to get into, but an epic worthy of the difficulty of the journey.
I completely and thoroughly recommend the entire six volumes. But you might want to start with the Termite Queen books to allow yourself to ease into the idea of termite heroes.