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The Magicians' Guild (The Black Magician Trilogy, Book 1) Mass Market Paperback – January 27, 2004
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The first part of the Black Magician Trilogy, this captivating tale has already been hailed by critics as a must for lovers of good fantasy. --Marie Claire Magazine --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.
About the Author
Trudi Canavan is the author of the bestselling Black Magician trilogy—The Magician's Guild, The Novice, and The High Lord—as well as Priestess of the White and Last of the Wilds, Books One and Two of her Age of the Five trilogy. She lives in a little house on a hillside, near a forest, in the Melbourne suburb of Ferntree Gully in Australia. She has been making up stories about things that don't exist for as long as she can remember, and was amazed when her first published story received an Aurealis Award for Best Fantasy Short Story in 1999. A freelance illustrator and designer, she also works as the designer and Art Director of Aurealis, a magazine of Australian Fantasy & Science Fiction.
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Top customer reviews
The series follows Sonea, a slum-living girl of Imardin, who violently discovers latent magic within her. While the first book focuses on her escaping the magicians who seek to control her and tame her now reckless magic shows a slightly innocent Sonea, she develops throughout the course of the series into a strong, resolute, able and compassionate woman. I love it when women in novels don’t turn into classic female archetypes. Sonea is definitely an original. If I ever had a daughter, I would want her to read this book (and also the Lioness Quartet by Tamora Pierce) so she could see what a truly strong woman is.
Canavan is also a master of threading multiple plots in a single novel. Each book in the trilogy has multiple storylines and each of the storylines are still interesting, a feat in and of itself. It shows that not only is Canavan limitlessly imaginative, but she is also crazy talented. I can only hope to make so many storylines flow together so smoothly and beautifully. Though the last book is dogged down by a love-plotline that came from way out in left field, I still appreciate the story in it’s entirety. The first book is a novel version of cat and mouse, the second is more of an adult version of Harry Potter, and the third is a book-long climax that wont let you go for a second.
I totally recommend this book to anyone with a love of both magic and realism. Canavan is truly a hero among authors for her world building, and her books manage to rekindle the nostalgia in me for the days of Harry Potter and schools where you can go learn magic. I would trade my Anthropology of Religion class for Transfiguration any day.
Good opening character development for the slum characters, though does have room to grow. I'd like to see more cleverness by these characters. The lead magician characters have much work needed, they seem fairly 2 dimensional and thus, predictable. Let the characters have fun, show that even the goody two shoes characters aren't perfect all the time... or even if they are, reveal their internal conflict and decisions via internal dialogue. Show that the evil characters have deeper motivations and/or think what their doing is right or justified, as most real people do. We all make decisions to do good or evil in every second, in every moment, with every decision. Good character development portrays these constant decisions made internally/externally, and it's not always a straight line, though can be a consistent trend.
Humor was attempted but a failure with this book, good try though. Very few fantasy authors can pull this off, but I'll keep crying about it until they collectively get better. LoL.
The plot was very good borderline great. The choice on perspectives for some of the plot reveals was a nice touch in order to prolong suspense for a harder hitting climax. Well played! Also the weaving in of the greater trilogy plot within this opening story without comprising either deserves some recognition. Finally, a few minor to moderate plot twists towards and at the end help to give the plotline some additional suspense and unpredictability.
All in all, good book and I'm buying the next. Hopefully the author grows and these turn into 5 stars!
One gripe: Too many names ending with the similar end sound. Sonea, Tania, Dania... The characters might be different but the names blended together.
There was little question who the focus bad guy would be in the book. It was telegraphed, dropped in front of the reader. Sure, some red herrings were offered, but they didn't hold well enough to distract. The overarching plot bad guy, on the other hand, they were a surprise.
I'm saying this is a worthy start to a series and I'm interested to see where the author goes from here.
Overall, I really enjoyed it and recommend it to anyone who likes fantasy novels, magic/wizards, rags to riches, and to an extinct, thieves! :)