Tag Archives: Wizards

The Wind Through the Keyhole by Stephen King (Dark Tower, Book 4.5)

Synopsis: On their way to Calla Bryn Sturgis, Roland and his ka-tet take shelter from a starkblast, and Roland tells the story of his first quest after killing his mother, and within it tells a fairy tale about a brave boy who tangles with a demonic trickster. Review: Oh, my, and it was good to hear Roland’s voice again, you say true and I say thankya. With the series complete, King didn’t need to add to his Dark Tower saga, but The Wind Through the…

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The Spirit Ring by Lois McMaster Bujold

Synopsis: In a magical version of Renaissance Italy, the daughter of a sculptor/mage finds herself embroiled in a deadly political dispute as she struggles to free her father’s soul, which a wicked lord wants to imprison in a magic ring. Review: Lois McMaster Bujold crafts a suspenseful tale of intrigue, sorcery, and politics that really satisfied me. The Spirit Ring is grounded in the kinds of real squabblings that mark territorial disputes, and the magic serves that story, rather than being the sole purpose of…

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Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien

Synopsis: One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them. Review: This is my third time reading JRR Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, and I can’t say I’ve ever enjoyed it more. I’ve been following along with The Tolkien Professor’s podcasted course, and the background I got from finally reading and actually comprehending The Silmarillion really enhanced the depth of pleasure I received once diving back into Frodo’s familiar world.…

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Feast of Souls by CS Friedman (The Magister Trilogy)

Synopsis: In a world where the price of magic is human life, one woman dares transgress against the prevailing power structures even as an ancient enemy threatens humankind. Review: Man, I hate synopsizing epic fantasy. The premises always end up sounding so silly. That’s a shame, because Feast of Souls actually really intrigued me with its central idea. Basically, there can be no magic without a human life force as fuel. Women who can control the life force become witches, but every act of magic…

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The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie

Synopsis: In a world characterized by politics and intrigue, a sorceror unites a legendary rogue, a dandyish fighter, and an outlaw woman in the fight to… oh, I’m not really sure what, honestly. Review: Seriously, what is The Blade Itself about? I was lost from really early on. The characters were interesting, but there didn’t seem to be much of a story, just a bunch of incidents loosely threaded together. I never got the connections or what the stakes were, or what anyone’s goals were.…

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Dreamsongs (Volume 1) by George RR Martin

Synopsis: The first of two anthologies featuring short stories by George RR Martin, ranging from fantasy to science fiction to horror to genre hybrids. Review: I am one of those readers who had never heard of George RR Martin before encountering A Game of Thrones, book one in his Song of Ice and Fire series. What I did not know is that Martin has had a prolific career as a short story writer, primarily in the genre of science fiction. Dreamsongs Volume 1 includes some…

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Emperor and Clown by Dave Duncan

Synopsis: Now married to the cursed Sultan Azak, Princess Inos finally heads to the capital city to plead her case in front of the wardens, as stable boy Rap rushes to meet her and embrace his destiny. Review: (Is that like the worst cover you have ever seen? Seriously.) Emperor and Clown is the final installment in Dave Duncan’s A Man of His Word series, and a most satisfying conclusion indeed. The overall story is a rich, satisfying adventure full of political machinations and romance,…

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The Limbreth Gate by Megan Lindholm

Synopsis: A gypsy woman is drawn into a shadow world to fulfill the destiny created for her when she was briefly kidnapped as a child. Review: The Limbreth Gate is the third installment in Megan Lindholm’s Ki and Vandien Quartet, and is perhaps the most conventional of her books. The plotline is a familiar one–a shadow world opens up, sucking the main characters in–and while Lindholm doesn’t exactly take it to new heights, she does deliver a solid, well-written, suspenseful fantasy tale. Share on Facebook

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The Windsingers by Megan Lindholm

Synopsis: The second in the adventures of gypsy teamster Ki, hired by a wizard to reunite his head with the rest of his body, which have been seized by the menacing Windsingers. Meanwhile, Vandien has contracted himself to a fool’s errand retrieving a treasure of the Windsingers, trapped in a sunken temple. Review: As I mentioned in my post on Harpy’s Flight, it doesn’t seem like Lindholm will be developing an overall mythology, though she is using some recurring characters, and might be continuing some…

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A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin

Synopsis: A young mage-in-training with unprecedented powers performs a forbidden spell and looses a shadow from another realm that intends to destroy him. Review: The writing in A Wizard of Earthsea is beautiful, and the world is wholly original. However, this books gets a little too fantasy-ey for me. It’s got a lot of Magic, and not that that much adventure. It’s much more about the ideas than it is about character development–which is fine. It’s just not what I prefer. Share on Facebook

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