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Magic Casement (Man of His Word, Book 1) Mass Market Paperback – November 13, 1990

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 307 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey; Reissue edition (November 13, 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 034536628X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345366283
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 4.5 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,560,736 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Inos, daughter and only child of good King Holindarn of Krasnegar, is bored. She longs to go riding and hang out with the servants' children, but imperious old Aunt Kade is determined that the marriageable young princess cultivate a ladylike air and learn the social graces. To further that end, Inos is sent off to the estate of Kinvale, a combination finishing school and matchmaking bureau. There, she is swept off her feet by Sir Andor, a man of uncertain motives whose natural charms have been enhanced by a "word of power." Back in Krasnegar, Rap the stableboy, a childhood friend of Inos's, is exhibiting some magical prowess of his own, not to mention a rush of adolescence. The latter transforms his friendship into an undying love certain to be requited before the series--of which this is the first installment--is over. This is a childish romance wrapped in a thin veneer of fantasy which, despite the presence of sorcerers, imps, goblins and the like, fails to invest a weak story with the slightest bit of real magic. Duncan's works include A Rose-Red City.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

A princess and a stableboy, each with the potential for magic, become embroiled in the politics of a kingdom's succession struggle in an intriguing fantasy by the au thor of The Seventh Sword (1988). Dun can's unique concept of goblins, fauns, and imps adds a new twist to this imaginative fantasy adventure. Recommended.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Customer Reviews

I have read over a thousand fantasy novels, and this book starts my favorite series.
Patrick McCuller
He creates likeable characters, interesting situations, and a consistent system of magic--plus just a really wonderful story.
M. Kinsey
Both the writing and the story were great, can't wait to see what happens in it's sequel.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Alanna Evans on February 11, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
goes a long way in the case of "Magic Casement". Those that are tired of books with a horde of 'main' characters that seem to get nowhere even through a handful of 1,000 page tomes, will be most pleased with the start of this four book series. Two main characters: the shy but faithful stableboy Rap with a curious knack for horses and the quite unladylike princess Inos, grow from their juvenile beginnings into adults as the story unfolds even just in volume one. For Inos, life holds far more than the world of the pampered royalty in embroidery and casual tea party chat that her father whisks her into after it becomes a necessity for her to wed so she can ascend the throne after her father's death. And for Rap, a denial of the acceptance of power could very well prove fatal for him as he finds that life gets much harder than being a mere stableboy.
Duncan's pace is impeccable. Like "The Gilded Chain" and the books following in their wake (which came many years after this series was written), he sets the story in brisk motion and keeps us trekking across the continents along with the two centers of the novels, entwining many more characters into their lives to complicate things even more, yet he never strays too far from the gels that hold the story together.
Tightly well written, introducing a very unique magic system which becomes very important as things come to a head, and an assortment of savagely likeable characters who are far beyond the cliched bunch found in other novels, "Magic Casement" is the start of a very good thing, and a must read for anyone who loves fantasy with a bit of an original edge.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A. Kespohl on September 17, 2005
Format: Paperback
I loved this series so much. It plays with the usual fantasy cast, but they are very sincerely and beautifully developed. You have your honest young stable boy (not very good-looking, just to shatter one classic fantasy role a little) who is bent on following his childhood friend Princess Inosolan all over the world if need be to help her regain her kingdom. This all takes place in a rich, well-developed world with interesting races based on historical places in our own world. Like the imps, dark-complected people with an interest in empire-building and a very well-organized Romanesque military. The story is exciting, with great twists and interesting developments. The system of magic is unique, and I adored all the characters.

I have all the books in this series and the sequel series, A Handful of Men, and I have read the first four until the pages are starting to fall out of the book. I think it is a true gem among some of the typical fantasy that's out there and I hope to spread the word about it!
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Silmarwen VINE VOICE on May 12, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Princess Inosolan is bored. Bored with the tiny kingdom of Krasnegar, bored with her Aunt Kade's attempts to give her some polish and just bored of being somewhere where nothing ever happens! However, she is simply stunned to discover that her father, King Holindarn, is sending her to Kinvale with her Aunt Kade to find a husband. Inos doesn't feel ready to marry and has never even been interested in boys that way. Well, there was Rap, the stableboy, whom she rode horses and played on the beach with, but he surely didn't count. After all, Rap wasn't a boy he was just Rap.
Inos hated Kinvale when she first arrived. She wasn't good at any of the maidenly pursuits that were focused on there and she really didn't care about embroidery or anything of that nature anyway - until Sir Andor arrived...Sir Andor was everything a maiden dreams of marrying - strong, handsome, charming, witty, attentive to a woman's every wish and desire. If Inos got to select her husband, and her father said that she may, she would surely pick Sir Andor. However, before they could reach a firmer understanding on the matter, Sir Andor up and left for the winter and Inos began to despair of ever seeing him again...
Meanwhile, back in Krasnegar, Rap was working hard with the horses and trying to improve his station in life from stableboy or goat herder to wagon driver, but he couldn't stop thinking about Inos. Oh, Rap well knew that their stations in life were so different that there could never be anything between them, but that didn't stop him from loving her. He just hoped that he would still recognize her when she returned from Kinvale and that they would still be friends.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Joel Skinner on February 18, 2003
Format: Paperback
I have read hundreds of fantasy books and this remains my my uncontested favorite series ever. Reading this book is somewhat like watching the felowship of the ring with out knowing that it is going to end in the middle. Your flying through the pages to see what will happen to Rap and Inos when all of a sudden it's over without realizing it you have finished the book. Now you must hunt through the used book stores to find the next one (before amazon[.com]) stopping at nothing to find what will happen to our stable boy and his queen, will Raps magic progress further or get him killed buy someone trying to torture his secret out of him.........
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Lida on March 10, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love Dave Duncan and this series is no different. Fun and interesting characters, facing impossible odds, will suck you in but if you purchase this book for your Kindle be warned that the second and third book are not available on Kindle. Only the first and forth book of this series have been released in the Kindle format.
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More About the Author

Dave Duncan is a prolific writer of fantasy and science fiction, best known for his fantasy series, particularly The Seventh Sword, A Man of His Word, and The King's Blades. He is both a founding and honorary lifetime member of SF Canada. Dave and his wife Janet, his in-house editor and partner for over fifty years, live in Victoria, British Columbia. They have three children and four grandchildren. Visit his blog and webpage:

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