Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Foundation: Book One of the Collegium Chronicles: A Valdemar Novel Mass Market Paperback – October 6, 2009
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
“Returning to her beloved Valdemar universe, Lackey opens her new series at a pivotal time in the history of Valdemar, when the education of Heralds is changing and dangers from other lands are felt in the court and on the training field. Series fans will enjoy the variations on a familiar theme, while enough information is presented for first-timers to discover a world of high adventure and individual courage. Highly recommended.” —Library Journal
“A real page-turner.... Outstanding characters, especially Mags, will greatly please Valdemar fans.” —Booklist
“An enjoyable and pleasant read.... Mags is an appealing protagonist facing challenges (and successes) with which readers will empathize." —RT Book Reviews
"Top Pick! ... A wonderful amalgam of fantasy and character study." —Night Owl Reviews
Top Customer Reviews
Firstly, the writing style is overly simplistic. It almost reads like a Young Adult book. I think it's to try and showcase the main character's general ignorance about the world at large, but since the book is still written in the third person, it brings the whole book down. Speaking of the main character, he's a bit flat....and also seems to be near perfect at everything he does with little struggle. There also isn't much in the way of story...very little really happens. I suspect that's because this is more of a just prologue for more books to come, especially since the ending kind of came out of nowhere and left things unexplained.
The most glaring problem for me though, as a long time reader of the series, are the many places that it contradicts things that are stated in other books, and that even though it's supposed to be taking place hundreds of years in the past (from the "present day" Valdemar reign of Selenay), some things actually seem to be more advanced, and the rest seem exactly the same, as if the passing of time has very little effect.
It's also worth noting that if you've never read a Valdemar book, this is not the one to start with. Most of the other books offer at least some background, information, or explanation of the general aspects Valdemar...this one very much does not, and just assumes that you already know. You particularly would want to read The Last Herald Mage trilogy before this one.
I'm afraid this story will annoy serious fans and bewilder those new to the otherwise admirable Valdemar series. Skip it.
In a nutshell: don't waste your money on the hardcover version, and unless you're a big fan of Valdemar, and HAVE to read every book out there, you can probably live your life without having read it and be okay.
The main character of the book is a TOTAL Mary Sue. He's practically illiterate, malnourished, knows nothing at all of the world outside his slavery, but once he is freed and Chosen, he pretty much can do anything he tries to do, and do it better than most other people. Even if he's never done it before. Or even heard about it before. And he does it all in a totally unrealistic short period of time. Oh, and his Gift of Mindspeech is greater than anybody else's, ever. And he has no failings (unless you count his wavering doubt of others/self-doubt as a failing). He is also, apparently, the only one in the ENTIRE Circle who can do what he does, and he does it as a newly Chosen.
If that weren't off-putting enough, the characters in the book play blindman's bluff, and I Spy (and actually call it "I Spy"). The student Healer-herbalist uses pills rather than tea and knows all about heart disease and its causes ("Cut down on red meat..."), there is a mechanical log-splitter, the houses have wall-to-wall carpeting in them and are furnished like houses in the modern world. There are so many references to 20th-century type things.... I don't know how she can put this in a medieval setting. And yet, this is supposed to take place 500 years before Talia.
It's been less than 50 years since Vanyel died, but Stefan died a long time ago from the way it reads.... he should still be alive at this point, however. So should Treven and Jisa, unless something weird happened to them. But I don't think anything did.... Treven was still listed as king, iirc, in the epilogue of Magic's Price. The vrondi are seen as totally mythical, which would not happen in the span of 50 years. Oh, and the Holderkin are alive and well in Valdemar, even though it states in AotQ they only came to Valdemar in Talia's grandmother's time. It's like she completely ignored her own canon, or was just too lazy to look up some simple facts.
And I don't even want to talk about her writing. At least she wrote this from a single POV, and didn't split the chapters up into separate POV. But her writing has just gone downhill from her earliest books. You don't lose talent, though. You just get lazy. And that's how it reads, as lazy writing. It's uninspired and unoriginal, and maybe it's hard to be original in Valdemar after all these years, but to pull modern day tools, games, food (fondue, anyone?), etc. and stick them in Valdemar without even trying to disguise the fact that you're doing so is just laziness. How about creating a brand new Gift that is volatile and dangerous, but absolutely necessary for the crisis at hand, and then have the Companions suppress it from memory (they're good at that). Or something. Anything. But this? I've read fanfiction better than this. I only gave it two stars because it's Valdemar. Maybe I should only have given it one.
I'm just really disappointed with this book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Five books in this series: Foundation, Intrigues, Changes, Redoubt, and Bastion.Read more