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Lady of Magick: A Noctis Magicae Novel Paperback – September 1, 2015
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Praise for The Midnight Queen
“The history of her world is not the usual stuff…inventive.”—Marie Brennan, Author of The Memoirs of Lady Trent
“A stunning story of magic, scholarship, and true love. Elegantly written, fast-paced and highly original…A remarkably assured debut.”—Juliet Marillier, National Bestselling Author of Dreamer's Pool
“Transported me back to those days when I discovered Anne McCaffrey, Robin McKinley, and…Tamora Pierce.”—TheBookPushers.com
About the Author
Sylvia Izzo Hunter was born in Calgary, Alberta, but now lives in Toronto with her husband and daughter and their slightly out-of-control collections of books, comics, and DVDs. When not writing, she works in scholarly journal publishing, sings in two choirs, reads as much as possible, knits hats, and engages in experimental baking. Her favorite Doctor is Tom Baker, her favorite pasta shape is rotini, and her favorite Beethoven symphony is the Seventh. She is the author of The Midnight Queen.
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Top Customer Reviews
When Gray is offered a position as a visiting lecturer at the University in Din Edin in the country of Alba and Sophie offered a position as a student there, they are eager to accept. However, Alba and Britain are separate countries and relations between them are somewhat tense. Sophie loves the university and is glad to meet and make friends with other female scholars. But the political situation isn't good. The land is suffering from some ills - crop failures and illness in some animal herds - and magickal interference is being blamed.
Tensions escalate when it is learned that the next Chieftain of the clans, Lucia MacNeill a fellow student of Sophie's, has become betrothed to Roland, Sophie's half brother and second in line to the throne in Britain, there are protests that threaten to grow into riots. The political factions that see this as Britain's attempt to conquer Alba are very unhappy.
Meanwhile, Joanna who is Sophie's sister is busy in London learning diplomacy from her guardian Sieur Germain de Kergabet who is an adviser to King Henry and Lord President of His Majesty's Privy Council. Joanna is on the inside knowing about the marriage plans of Roland, who has a monster crush on her, and Lucia MacNeill. Joanna is also planning a visit north to visit her sister and Gray.
Shortly before Joanna's arrival, Gray is kidnapped though, at first, it is assumed that he has been called home because of his father's illness. Time is lost because of the need to give him time to travel from Alba to the south of Britain but when a second letter is received, Sophie knows that something is very wrong. She learns that other foreign mages have also disappeared. She is determined to find her husband. In fact, she must find her husband because the longer he is away from her the more sick she becomes. Their marriage had linked their magick together. If she can't find him, they will both die.
This was a wonderful story. The world building was amazing. I loved the combination of magick and political intrigue. I also loved the growing relationship between Gray and Sophie as they adjust to being married. Sophie is a wonderful character who has immense magickal talent but no desire to use it for political gain.
This book will be going on my Keeper Shelf along with the first book in the series - THE MIDNIGHT QUEEN.
They settle in, with Sophie still hiding her new, uncomfortable rank, but eventually feels secure enough to allow some people to know the truth. As time passes, and the famine in Alba spreads, things become dark and troubling. As Joanna makes plans to make the trek north to visit, bringing her newfound friend Gwendolyn Pryce, Sophie considers telling her to remain in London for her own safety: darkness rides the land and foreign mages are going missing.
This is a fantastic read. If you loved the first book in the series, do not pass this one up. If you haven't read THE MIDNIGHT QUEEN yet, run out and get it so you can go straight into LADY OF MAGICK without missing a beat.
It’s been two years since Sophie and Gray Marshall thwarted a plot to kill the King, and along the way revealed Sophie as the long lost Princess of the crown.
Sophie has been diligently pursuing her studies at Merlin College, while Gray has been teaching. Being the only female student has not been easy on Sophie. Despite all her hard work, genuine desire to learn and be at the college, many regard her as an interloper. Her royal status also doesn’t help with those who view it as more of a means for Sophie to gain special treatment, however much this is untrue.
So when Gray is invited to teach at the university in Din Edin in the Kingdom of Alba, Sophie is excited to go to a place where female scholars are treated as equal to male. But once they arrive it seems that things in Alba are not as peaceful as they thought, and when certain clans voice discord in an apparent marriage alliance between Alba and Britain, Sophie and Gray find they might be in danger.
When I started reading Lady of Magick and realized that Sylvia Izzo Hunter had picked up a couple of years after the first book, I was happy she decided to do this because the image that readers get of the characters is one of growth. All of the characters have grown up and had more experiences (whether good or bad) separate from that of the conspiracy plot in the first book, and I rather liked seeing where everyone found themselves this time around.
Of course, it’s not long before Gray and Sophie, along with Sophie’s sister Joanna and Joanna’s friend Gwen, find themselves in an equally messy situation.
I’d say that the complaints I had about the first book pretty much stand the same for this second book. The progression is pretty slow. It takes quite awhile to understand the overlying conflict of the book and from there the action tends to ebb and flow. Once the path is known I kind of wish it would have kept the faster pace, but alas it was not to be so.
I also found myself never really warming up to Alba, which is the reason why this book got a lower rating from me than The Midnight Queen. For all that Sophie and Gray are there for months, I felt like I never really got to know their acquaintances or friends in the way I should have. They form relationships with people but that verifiable connection was never there for me. I’m thinking this is a result of the fact that most often a month’s time would pass in the change of each chapter.
What doesn’t disappoint of course are Sophie and Gray. Their sweet relationship has only grown stronger in the intervening years, and though they are not ones to overtly show their affection, I find I like the small subtle way they do show it. I also liked when seemingly inconsequential occurrences from the first book would pop up again and actually have an effect on what was happening in the storyline. Based on the blurb, I think we’re going to be in for more of the same in A Season of Spells.