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.
Other Sellers on Amazon
Magus Of Stonewylde Book One Paperback – September 1, 2007
"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Learn more
Frequently bought together
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Customers who bought this item also bought
I read a dozen pages of Magus of Stonewylde and was trapped, for the duration of the book. In fact, I got so emotionally involved with the two main characters that I lay awake at night worrying about them, and had to exert all my strength of character not to flick to the last chapter to reassure myself that they won through. And then I was left on the biggest cliff-hanger at the end of a first novel in a sequence since "The Fellowship of the Ring". Of course I can't wait, now, to get my hands on book two, and I couldn't imagine that any sane person would feel otherwise. Kit Berry is an amazing natural storyteller, as much a magician in her effect as any of her characters. There is nobody who has taken the spirit of modern British Paganism, and infused it into a thrilling tale, as convincingly and alluringly as she. In a deeper sense, however, this is achievement is an extra one, because her people, her places and her plots are all so vivid that they would in themselves establish her as a major novelist of what can be termed 'fantastic realism'. --Professor Ronald Hutton in Pagan Dawn (UK magazine)
A reader knows they are hooked on a story when a few pages into a book they suddenly realise that all everyday preoccupations are temporarily suspended in favour of a complete obsession with the characters and their fates. The Stonewylde books are absolutely at the top of the league of unputdownable novels. Kit Berry has pulled off a remarkable coup. Her detailed description of the small, remote community makes it very believable despite the unlikely scenario of an alternative agrarian society living by farming along medieval lines, ruled over by a rich despotic tyrant in complete isolation from the modern world. The author s descriptive powers also indicate a deep love of landscape and an acute observation of nature, while the brutality of some of the action brings a disturbing tension to the story. There are few enough Pagan fiction writers, and unfortunately even fewer examples of good Pagan fiction. The Stonewylde series has to be among the best in what is a fledgling genre. These books are such a terrific read that I have absolutely no reservations about recommending them to anyone. And yes, I can t wait for the next one! Highly Recommended --Jerry Bird, in Merry Meet (UK magazine)
Kit Berry has written what is destined to be a best-selling commercial smash and an award-winning darling of the critics. In all honesty, I loved this book. From the moment that I first picked it up to read, I had a very hard time putting it down. What Kit Berry has done with Magus of Stonewylde is create one of the most amazing worlds and some of the most vibrant and fully-fleshed characters that I have encountered in my reading career. I found myself completely caught up in the triumphs and tragedies of Sylvie and Miranda; hating Buzz and rooting for Yul; cautious of Magus and wary of Mother Heggy. I loved every aspect of this book and am amazed at Berry s boundless imagination. I highly recommend that you get hold of the book ... I promise that you will not regret reading Magus of Stonewylde. This is a wonderful book. I, for one, am itching to get my dirty little mitts on a copy of Moondance of Stonewylde and see what happens to Sylvie and Yul and Miranda and Magus next. --American blogger: bryansbookblog.blogspot.com
About the Author
Kit Berry is an English writer who loves the natural world. She has a great love of standing stones, ancient sacred sites, the beauty of the landscape and wildlife and nature. She's a spiritual person who feels most at one with creation when she's out walking in the hills or woods, or gazing at the moon. Kit was a school teacher for many years, and raised three sons who are now grown up. She began writing the Stonewylde Series after a transformational encounter in some woods with a hare (or jack-rabbit in US speak!). She enoys going to alternative retreats and festivals. She lives with a wonderful man and two Burmese cats in a 16th Century cottage in England. Kit and her partner enjoy travelling and new adventures. Kit has written four of the five books in the Stonewylde Series. She continues to work on the series, and loves to attend author events to speak about her writing. She can be found on MySpace and contacted via the Stonewylde website.
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
I did feel that Sylvie was bit too naive and trusting of Magus after she saw how dangerous and brutal he could be. I was also a bit surprised by her mother's behavior as she became more insinuated into the community. But I suppose that because Miranda is still young, only about 30, and having Sylvie when she was 15 (and not knowing who the father is) she can be excused for being naive where men and romantic relationships are concerned. I expect things to get very interesting between mother and daughter when Sylvie comes of age.
I was also a bit surprised that Miranda didn't do more research on the community before committing herself and Sylvie to joining them permanently. She is a teacher after all and had access to the Internet and what sounds like a vast library from the Hall, but she didn't even look up the meaning of the festivals that Magus mentioned to her. I understand that having a break from the hard unfulfilling life she used to lead and feeling accepted for the first time in her adult life can be a powerful thing. But, you would think being an educator she would at least be curious of what Magus was talking about and what everyone in the Village worked so hard on.
I do hope we learn more of Sylvie's father in the next book. I also wonder about Yul and one of his sisters. I don't think Alwyn sired all of those children.
One thing I haven't' seen discussed in other reviews is the names given these two. I am assuming that Sylvie's name is most likely a derivative of "Sylvia" which relates to woods or forests. I was expecting her character to be more drawn to the woods surrounding Stonewylde than she appears to be. Yes, she enjoys her walks through the estate, but she seems to have no knowledge of trees or tree lore. Perhaps, though her name is to show that she is destined to be with Yul, a woodsman.
Then there is the name Miranda which means "worthy of admiration". This seems to indicate that she must have some innate quality that drew Sylvie's father and Magus to her, but this isn't explored much in this book, other than to mention that Magus likes her hair.
Of course, perhaps Ms. Berry was making a reference to Shakespeare's "The Tempest" and her conservative upbringing that made her susceptible to Sylvie's father's attention and in the course of the story makes her easily manipulated by Magus.
I liked other character's names also. Buzzard is appropriately named as is Jackdaw and Magus' half-brother Eclipse, who was to be the true ruler of Stonewylde, but is eclipsed by Magus' stronger and more focused personality. But, Alwyn seems to be misnamed, as I don't find him being a noble or elf friend of anyone. If feel the same about Yul's mother, Maizie which means, "pearl". Of course, this could be a reference to "pearls before swine" due to her unfortunate marriage to Alwyn. But, with her continued acceptance of Alwyn's ever increasing brutality I don't really see her as one of the "good guys" or worthy of a name that refers to a high priced and valued gem. Perhaps she will redeem herself in future books.
I'm curious of naming the old wise woman "Heggy". I would love to know if that is a reference to "hedge" as in "to protect against loss or harm" or if it is to mean something else entirely. Most of the other characters have pretty straightforward names so this obscure one has me really wondering.
I'm really looking forward to the next book in the series and highly recommend giving this book a try if you like magical fiction with a bit of adventure. There is a bit of romance, but not too much. If you, too, feel it starts a bit slow, give it time and I think you will be glad you did.
July 9, 2010
The descriptions of the people, environs and flora and fauna of Stonewylde mean you don't just read this book you live it. Ms Berry obviously has a feel for the 'old ways' and Pagan beliefs because the attention to detail is that good. The book gets a lot darker towards the end and I actually found myself worried for Yul, the male lead character (yeah, I know he's the hero and everything will be alright but the stuff he has to endure is tough)
Loved this book and would highly recommend it to anyone. Thankfully book 2 will be out soon because this ended on not so much a cliffhanger as a major turning point so midnight on release day it'll be heading straight to my kindle.
Although seasoned readers and reviewers learn to not spend too much thought or energy on short, powerful statements designed to spark interest and excitement, in this case, the cross-genre aspects of this book make it both noteworthy and worth a read. Berry has rendered the boundaries of several genres invisible, pulling elements from each to build her vivid world, and still manages to present a tight, well-crafted story. At 304 pages, Magus of Stonewylde is a quick, page-turning read.
Stonewylde is a fascinating place--a closed community in England, where the fair-haired, fair-eyed Hallfolk are supported by the working-class, peasant Villagers. Structured around the eight pagan festivals that mark the cycles of the year, Stonewylde seems to offer a remedy to the fast-paced, impersonal, material world. It is a place of great power and healing, full of wizards and shamans. A place where sexual intercourse is a path to the Goddess. A place where the Ancient Ways are alive and somewhat well.
If much of this sounds familiar, from both page and screen, keep reading--Berry brings plenty that is fresh and new to the table. Stonewylde is a garden teeming with Evil. Among her beautiful rock formations, ceremonial fields, and deep woods are dark energies and a past of twisted secrets. Berry teases us, as a good author does, with bits of information and history that will guarantee we come back to visit Stonewylde in the subsequent books.
I found myself deeply interested in the characters, even going so far as to scribble expletives and less than flattering monikers for some of the less likable ones in the margins.
Be prepared to be pissed off (and I mean that as a selling point of the book)--the teenagers are vacillating, ego-maniacal, and as quick to tease and scheme as any teenagers I've ever met on the page (they're very realistic)... and the "adults" are something to behold--those who should Protect inflict the greatest Hurt and their actions are often shockingly ignorant and cruel. I found myself pushing other things back so I could read "a few more pages" to find out just when those actions would be paid back in kind. I know of no better compliment than that.
Berry really does have a knack for creating multidimensional and moving characters. She has succeeded with the simple formula so many writers fail to make work--she has done her research to create a well-painted environment easy to enter and explore; she has populated it with characters that jump off the page with their humanness, for good and for bad--often in the same character; and she has energized it all with the key themes that resonate most with readers--Love, Power, Violence, Secrecy, and Destiny.
Magus of Stonewylde has wide appeal--for those still lamenting the end of the Harry Potter series, this is a magical world populated with the types of quirky teens and scheming adults that made those books such a success; for those who are interested in or practitioners of pagan/wiccan rites, this is a place custom-made for you to visit; and for those who just plain love a good story, with excellent pace and plenty of blood-rising action, you can't do much better.
I look forward to exploring more of Stonewylde--Kit Berry is an author that will no doubt be enjoying a continual increase in readership and accolades.