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Master of the Five Magics Paperback – Import, 1985

4.3 out of 5 stars 43 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Arcadia Sequence Series

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi; Reprint edition (1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552126799
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552126793
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,301,893 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
As my bookshelves continue to grow, I can name only a handful of books that I continue revisit time and time again. Duncan's Magic Casement series. Feist's Riftwar. Moon's Saga of Paksenarrion. And above all, Hardy's Master of the Five Magics.
Hardy's spellbinding tale of Alodar's quest through the five paths of magic, and the climactic culmination of his talents at the end, is a thrilling adventure no matter how many times you've read it. Hardy's detailed explanations of the tenets of each of the magical paths are some of the most logical I've ever encountered in this genre.
The only negative thing I can say about this book is that the romantic scenes read like a daytime soap opera, and not a particularly good one at that. Fortunately they only last a page or two, and then our hero is back on his quest.
Master of the Five Magics is simple to read, complex in scope, and thorougly compelling to the last page. Get it if you can find it; you'll probably never sell it.
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By grooveman on November 16, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I read this book years ago, but It is still one of my favorites.

It is a great fantasy novel for someone with an analytical mind and a penchant for subtlety. A good book for imaginative intellectuals (as opposed to entertainment-seekers or cyincal intellectuals who like to find fault in everything not of the mundane).

Hardy is a good writer who has an excellent grasp of human nature and a natural bent for keeping complex theoritical constructs internally consistent. His story is imaginative and fantastic, and yet at the same time not an affront to one's "common sense". The story line moves along at a nice pace with a few nice twists and turns.

This whole series is well worth a read or two. I can't say enough good things about this book.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I grew up reading fantasy and science fiction, and one of the greatest regrets I have is that I never found more than three books written by Lyndon Hardy, an author I still consider an automatic buy. In a way, this man's work defined what I expect from fantasy.

Of his three published works, I liked 'Master of the Five Magics' the best, followed closely with 'Secret of the Sixth Magic'. 'Riddle of the Seven Realms' comes in third, but keep in mind it's been over 20 years since I purchased the books, and I've moved six times and had to parse my book collection. I still have these wonderful novels, which I've re-read about once every five years.

Now about the book -- it follows Alodar, an apprentice Thaumaturgist. The magic system used by Lyndon Hardy is unique and self-consistent, hitting the right balance of rules vs power to make fantasy magic truly interesting. The closest modern equivlents I can think of are David Farland's Runelords or even Robert Jordan's One Power.

Alodar's journey takes him into enclaves of each magic practitioner across the land, and he meets adversaries that constantly beat him down. Yet he doesn't give up! I could really feel for Alodar by the end of the novel, so the primary characterization is wonderful.

The plotting was strong, and kept me with the book until the end. I never expected some of the twists thrown at me by Hardy.

As for the settings, I can still conjure up the inner heart of the Volcano with uncut gems waiting like burning fruit, the wizard's library with the spell barrier gongs, and the imposing black tower surrounded by minor demons. Those images have stayed with me for years, and have become benchmarks I measure new fantasy by. Lyndon Hardy hit the right mix of dialogue, pacing, and description I find lacking in so many 'modern' fantasy efforts.

If you haven't read this wonderful novel, I urge you to try it.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Like some other reviewers, I can't remember exactly when I read this, but it seems like freshman year in high school. I just found my old copy of this book in storage, and I suddenly rememebred how incredible this book is. I remember following Alodar through his trials and his desperate search for some way to win a queen's hand. I remember how he went through each of the 5 magics in the hopes of finding something that could aid him in his quest for a woman, and how he in turn becomes involved in a much greater plan. l also rememeber how I threw this book across the room several times because I was so SICK of Alodar getting repeatedly shafted by others that benefited from his hard work. But, most of all, I remember how I actually yelled out with joy (in the middle of class no less) as I read the story's climax. It is that good, and well worth the wait. This book is flawless and fascinating. I can't wait to read it again.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I really quite enjoyed this book. The logical view of how magic works is well developed and has an internal consistency that is lacking in most fantasy worlds.

The writing is not the best you will ever read. However, it is a fun read. It is significantly better than most of the crap that is being published by Wizards of the Coast stable of authors -- I have to apologize to R. A. Salvatore (he still puts out a good book now and again).

The approach to the story, magic and character development are a bit different that most other books. If you see a copy in a used bookstore, it is worth picking up and giving a try. If you like this book you will like the two follow up books.
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