Here's what the critics said about these novels. Note: Although all except The Catswold Portal and the omnibus edition of the Dragonbards trilogy are out of print, they are available as ebooks and print editions can be found in many public libraries.
Click on book cover to read an excerpt!
The Catswold Portal (Adult Fantasy)
NAL/ROC hardcover, 1992; paperback, 1993
EOS paperback, 2005
HarperCollins ebook, 2009
"You don't have to love cats to appreciate this fantasy novel in
which a race of shapechanging cats are the key to the fate of a
Netherworld.... Ms. Murphy's characterization of Melissa is truly
remarkable, making the reader fully alive to the vibrant, sensual world
of the feline. Masterfully orchestrating this cat's cradle plot, Ms.
Murphy will make you take a second look at the next cat you see."
-- Romantic Times
"Delightful fantasy.... Murphy...balances her rich, detailed Netherworld with a vividly characterized earthly realm. Her cat people, in particular, ring true." -- Publisher's Weekly
"A captivating feline fantasy.... Characterizations are dynamic,
whether human or otherwise, and the growing relationship between Braden
and Melissa--as cat and as human--is ingeniously handled as is Melissa's
Catswold heritage. Murphy has carefully created two well-realized,
disparate worlds linked by the dramatic struggle to defeat the evil
queen. Romantic fantasy with plenty of action and sure appeal."
"Murphy's true sorcery is in her deft juggling of two different but
inextricably related worlds...and a cast of exotic beasts, outlandlish
creatures and intriguing characters caught in a compelling turmoil that
swirls them between those worlds.... Some of the finest moments are
Murphy's convincing portrayals of the problems faced by a creature who
is a cat and a woman.... The Catswold Portal is an enchanting,
inventive and ingeniously plotted fantasy, and Murphy's insight into
feline nature is remarkable. A word of warning: Don't pick up this book
in the evening, intending to read yourself to sleep. You'll be awfully
tired the next day." -- Cat Fancy
New! The complete trilogy in one volume:
Nightpool, The Ivory Lyre, and The Dragonbards
Paperback and ebook editions, June 2016
"Scenes that fairly soar infuse the tale with mythical qualities, which are buttressed by vitalized characterizations (the otters, foxes and dragons as well as Teb are developed in loving detail while the evil ones are truly evil). An enthralling fantasy that begs a sequel, better yet a series of sequels." --ALA Booklist (on Nightpool)
"A riveting sequel to Nightpool.... A finely crafted story filled with scenes of chilling horror as well as courage and beauty. Murphy's dragon lore exhibits an exciting immediacy; her scenes of dragons in flight exalt the reader.... Anne McCaffrey, make room." --ALA Booklist (on The Ivory Lyre)
"Once again Murphy demonstrates a fine sense of storytelling, high
adventure, scene setting, and characterization--human, animal, and evil
monster. And her dragons remain some of the most appealing in
contemporary fantasy." --ALA Booklist (on The Dragonbards)
(Formerly titled The Children of Ynell series)