Peter Morwood

I went into this expecting it to feel more like a Diane Duane novel, which entirely wasn’t the case. (For context, they’re married—that wasn’t an entirely random thought to have.) Instead, it felt like a storyteller; the plot didn’t quite line up in the way I expect from a novel, but I think it works fairly well as a story being told to a great hall full of revelers.

There’s a couple odd spots, still—near the beginning, a couple chapters from a different character’s perspective, and I kept expecting to go back to them, but they never reappeared. And, towards the end, a skip forward in time that feels like it’s glossing over a lot of things that happened. This is listed as “Book 1” in the series, but I feel like, in the interest of closure, the last chapter was actually borrowed from the end of Book 2 instead.

Those issues aside, I quite enjoyed the book. The prose flows in a way that, again, feels like a story teller in a way; there’s a rhythm to it throughout. I’m still a bit unclear on the system of magic—there’s a distinction between sorcerers and wizards, but I still couldn’t tell you which was which—but that feels like just a mixing of words, and the actual system feels reasonably clear.1 And I appreciated that, while it doesn’t wrap up every thread, and actually specifically starts up some new ones at the end, it still came with enough of a sense of closure on the story that it felt complete. It’s the start of a series, but I don’t feel cheated out of anything by having only read the first one so far.

All in all, this was a good read, and a fairly approachable fantasy novel. Give it a read.2

  1. Which, again, very different from Duane’s works—in here, it’s clearly a ‘soft magic’ system, whereas the Young Wizards series has a fairly hard magic system, with very clear rules and functionality… that can still occasionally bend for the betterment of the plot. But then, in-universe, that kind of thing still makes sense, because the reader isn’t the only outside force looking in, and the others are able to influence things more directly.
  2. This is an Amazon affiliate link – if you buy it from here, I get a little bit of commission. It won’t hurt my feelings if you buy it elsewhere; honestly, I’d rather you check it out from your local library, or go to a local book store. I prefer Bookshop affiliate links to Amazon when possible, but in this case, the book wasn’t available there, so it’ll have to do.