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Princeps: The Fifth Book of the Imager Portfolio Hardcover – May 22, 2012

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Frequently Bought Together

Princeps: The Fifth Book of the Imager Portfolio + Imager's Battalion: The Sixth Book of the Imager Portfolio + Scholar: A Novel in the Imager Portfolio
Price for all three: $51.67

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Product Details

  • Series: The Imager Portfolio (Book 5)
  • Hardcover: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; 1 edition (May 22, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765330954
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765330956
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.7 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (97 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #228,107 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


Praise for the Imager Portfolio:
“The prolific Modesitt kicks off a new fantasy series that boasts an early modern setting—think Victorian times without the pollution…. Modesitt’s capacity to wring new surprises from stock ideas remains undiminished.”  —Kirkus Reviews on Imager
“Modesitt writes some of the most interesting characters in Fantasy. He is a master of developing young heroes. Fans of the author's Recluce and Corus series will enjoy this series as well.”
SFRevu on Imager's Challenge
“Modesitt has drawn a superb portrait of an honest and powerful man handed a crisis that even he may not be able to handle…. Extremely satisfying.”  —Booklist on Imager's Intrigue

“There is something so satisfying about picking up a novel by an author who’s consistently good at his or her craft: the heft of the book, the scent of the ink, the awareness that what will happen in the pages will be truly wondrous. It is no different with Modesitt’s latest travel in the world of the Imagers; although Scholar is tied to the other books, this is a prequel that can stand alone. Quaeryt is a fascinating character, and his trials and journey are action packed and yet intellectual.”
RT Book Reviews, 4 stars on Scholar

About the Author

New York Times bestselling author L. E. MODESITT, JR., lives in Cedar City, Utah.

More About the Author

After spending years writing poetry, political speeches and analyses, as well as economic and technical reports on extraordinarily detailed and often boring subjects, I finally got around to writing my first short story, which was published in 1973. I kept submitting and occasionally having published stories until an editor indicated he'd refuse to buy any more until I wrote a novel. So I did, and it was published in 1982, and I've been writing novels -- along with a few short stories -- ever since.

If you want to know more, you can visit my website at

Customer Reviews

I have enjoyed reading the series so far and look forward to the next volume.
I found the Imager novels to be every bit as addictive as L.E. Modesitt's Saga of Recluce, with very interesting characters and story lines.
K. Thompson
Characters are engaging, story is compelling and it's hard to put any of his books down.
A California Entrepreneur

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Peter on May 26, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Princeps, the continuation of Scholar is up to Mr. Modesitt's usual high standard. The author has a very distinctive voice and style. If you are familiar with it, then you know what to expect. If you are not, then it is almost like reading a chess game. Characters (pieces) meet or approach, form alliances or enmities and fade away or conflict ensues. This is not to say that the story is dull but the plot is very logical.

Quaeryt, our main protagonist, newly married, is settling in as the Princeps or deputy governor of the province which he had saved in the previous book, Scholar. A natural disaster sends him to another city to govern although this could be said to be more crisis management than the role of a normal governor. From there, the plot continues predictably: not because of the writing but due to human nature. Modesitt is nothing if not a realist.

There are pleasant characteristics: a dash of mysticism and the well thought out magic system; this is more of a tool than anything else and exacts a price. A few more veils are lifted from the fascinating world that Modesitt is building although this is being done gradually as this is book two of a five book series. Modesitt's usual philosophy for his protagonists - the more they learn, the more they realize how little they know - runs strongly in this novel and stops Quaeryt from becoming a cardboard superhero.

Finally, a couple of points: having read a few odd negative reviews about Scholar, please note that this book has nothing to do with Rhenn, the protagonist of the first three Imager books. This is the second volume of five about Quaeryt and is set during a much earlier period in the same world.

If you are thinking about trying out this series, I would very much recommend beginning with the first volume of Quaeryt's adventures, Scholar. This is not really a standalone novel but a hugely enjoyable follow up.
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28 of 31 people found the following review helpful By J. Hulet on May 22, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Princeps is a direct follow-up to Scholar and continues the story of Quaeryt, the Scholar/Imager. In Scholar, Quaeryt grew greatly both as a person and as an Imager through his service to Lord Bhayar in investigating the reason for heavy military requirements in the province on Tilbor. Quaeryt's resounding success in figuring out the underlying issue and protecting Lord Bhayar's interests is rewarded by an appointment as Princeps of Tilbor and marriage to Bhayar's sister, Vaelora.

As Princeps of Tilbor, Quaeryt has a lot of his plate while managing the administrative and financial aspects of the province. Quaeryt is responsible for working out the details when merchants or tradesmen seek concessions or to negotiate with the government. This is a great teaching and learning experience for a well educated Scholar, and prepares him for the next phase of the story.

After a natural disaster in the province of Extela, Quaeryt and his wife are called by Lord Bhayar to take control and re-assert order. One interesting part of this is L.E. Modesitt's re-use of an ethnic group's gift for precognition. Vealora's grandmother had seen a vision of this a natural disaster taking place, but did not know when it would occur. The events surrounding the relocation to Extela, and Quaeryt's efforts to establish a working government and to keep people fed, are ground well-covered by Modesitt in many of his other books. It doesn't make it less interesting, but it does feel familiar. Quaeryt also comes into conflict with some of the greedy, self-interested local nobility. I liked the way that Modesitt did not paint all wealthy people with the same brush in terms of profiting from the misfortunes of others.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Liviu C. Suciu on May 30, 2012
Format: Hardcover
INTRODUCTION: After the trilogy consisting of Imager, Imager's Challenge and Imager's Intrigue that introduced us to Rhenn, one of the most enchanting narrators in recent fantasy, LE Modesitt goes back in time before the unification of Solidar to give us a tale that introduces another great character, scholar and secret imager, Quaeryt Rytersyn.

This time we will be treated to five Quaeryt volumes in the next few years - all written and all but the last titled and edited to go - so Princeps which picks up exactly where Scholar ends is the second volume of a huge five volume novel.

I will try to keep spoilers for Scholar at the minimum but obviously there will be some, so if you have not yet read the first Quaeryt novel and do not want to find out some major developments there, check my review of Scholar above instead.

OVERVIEW/ANALYSIS: First a quick refresher of the setup: the island continent of Lydar - in Rhenn's books named Solidar - separated in various states since time immemorial has recently been consolidated into three countries, of which big bad Bovaria in the East under sinister Rex Kharst plans to unite the whole continent with fire and sword and cleanse it of undesirable elements like the Pharsi minority - darker hued merchants, industrialists and seers famous for their beautiful and beguiling women as we have seen Seliora, Rhenn's wife in the original trilogy - the learned scholars and the magic wielding Imagers.

Opposing it, Telaryn is the other main continental power which has expanded to conquer most of the Western part of Lydar under its warlord Yaran dynasty, while the smaller southern Antiago stands for now mostly due to the reputation of its war Imagers and dreaded Antiagon Fire weapon.
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