Why this book?
As a young girl reading this book, I was gripped by the idea of women having rulership. Women's Lib was going on then, but girls like me simply weren't encouraged to take leadership roles.
The viewpoint character is an Earth man who comes through a portal into the land of Estcarp. There he learns to respect the magical power of his witch companion, whose training forbids him to even know her name. They are joined by two warriors, a young woman in disguise and a hunchback exiled because of his disability. Together the four thwart an incursion by creepy technological invaders.
Andre Norton often pushed boundaries by including disadvantaged groups in her fiction. Her distinctive voice, objective and yet powerful, inspired and shaped my own fiction.