Francis, Diana Pharaoh -- Path of Fate

Young healer is drawn into a war, gets magical telepathic bird companion. I was prepared to approve of this book for showing a society with healing as a non-mystical profession -- no magical healing, but a tradition of herb knowledge and antisepsis, with apprenticeships and social support for people with this valuable training. The magical animal companions are a separate thing. They come to people meant to handle law and justice, but it's still up to the humans to decide justice; they get no magical support other than a link to a potentially useful scout animal.

Anyway, I was all pleased about solidly human-centered magic-animal fantasy, and half a chapter later the protagonist gets magical healing abilities. At this point the floor drops out of the narrative. Her biggest problem turns out to be whether the Goddess will give her superpowers fast enough to deal with the ostensible crisis (a political kidnapping). Feh.

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