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A Scholar of Magics (A College of Magics Book 2) Kindle Edition
Glasscastle. University of dreaming towers and distant bells, pompous dons and disputatious undergraduates, exquisite architecture and grass that can choke you to death if you walk on it without the proper escort. On the surface, it is one of the most beautiful and peaceful places in England. But underneath, its magic is ancient and dangerous.
Samuel Lambert, sharpshooter, adventurer, late of the Wyoming plains and Kiowa Bob's Wild West Show, has been invited to Glasscastle to contribute his phemomenally accurate shooting eye to the top secret Agincourt Project. The only dangers he expects to face are British snobbery, heavy dinners, and tea with the Provost's pretty wife. But when the Provost's stylish sister Jane comes to town, things get much more exciting.
This sparkling sequel to A College of Magics is a whirlwind of secret weapons, motor cars, mysterious assaults and abductions, thugs in bowler hats, and a mild-mannered don who is heir to a magical power greater than all Glasscastle. The resulting tale is as funny as a Gilbert and Sullivan Victorian romp, with the wit and suspense of a Dorothy Sayers mystery and a dash of John Wayne thrown in for good measure.
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From the Inside Flap
"Caroline Stevermer has a wonderfully light touch, and in A Scholar of Magics she is in top form. It is a deft and witty interweaving of mystery and magic in a world that is familiar on all points but the most important."--Jo Walton
"Caroline Stevermer's A Scholar of Magics is, quite precisely, wonderful -- full of wonders. By the end of the first paragraph, I suspected I was in good hands; by the end of the third page, I was sure of it. Stevermer's writing has grown in assurance and power, and it rings like Glasscastle's own magic bells."-Lois McMaster Bujold
"One of the best fantasies I've read of the 2004 crop. A wonderfully conceived and described setting, likable characters, worthy villains, a reasonable mystery, and delightful writing."--Chronicle, Don D'Ammassa, March 04
"In this sequel to Stevermer's charming fantasy of manners, A College of Magics, set in an alternate Edwardian age, the descriptions of life at Glasscastle University, together with the sheer zest of the characters for magic, truth and fashion, make this a sweet, magical romance. This is the perfect read for those who enjoy taking ambling walks in orderly alternate worlds where calling cards and starched collars still help make a man."-Publishers Weekly
"The sequel to A College of Magics takes place in the same magical, Victorian-Edwardian Britain, and shows yet again that Stevermer is a worthy follower of Jane Austen for wit, of Dorothy Sayers for suspense and erudition. This emerging series will likely draw readers from across a very wide spectrum of the fantasy and alternate history audiences, including--indeed, never forgetting--the adult readership for the adventures of the boy named Harry."-Booklist, Frieda Murray
"A Scholar of Magics is the sequel to A College of Magics and is set a couple of months after that book. This book stands alone very nicely. A Scholar of Magics is set in an alternate Britain, where airplanes are a new invention and motor cars are uncommon, and the British practice afternoon tea as an art. In this Britain the ancient and honorable university of Glasscastle is teaching magic.This book is more full of ambience then action. But oh it's such wonderful atmosphere. It takes the reader into the quiet, proper, peaceful, magical world of an England before the World Wars, and it's a very nice visit. Subtle detail make this a real world and not a bare stage with the characters walking upon it. This is a very well written book and a pleasure to read."-SF Revu--This text refers to the mass_market edition.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
- ASIN : B007VOTE0U
- Publisher : Tor Books; 1st edition (March 7, 2006)
- Publication date : March 7, 2006
- Language : English
- File size : 489 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Sticky notes : On Kindle Scribe
- Print length : 435 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: #579,393 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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The setting is an Edwardian alternate world, where the sun never sets on the British Empire, and people chuff about in steam engines, motor cars, and aeroplanes with their little red Baedeckers at the ready. Jane Brailsford, a scholar of Greenlaw (`the' College of Magics) returns for this sequel, and meets up with the American, Samuel Lambert, a sharpshooter from Kiowa Bob's Wild West Show.
Lambert yearns to become a scholar at Glasscastle University (modeled I believe, on Cambridge University) where he has been temporarily employed to test a magical weapon. He offers to take Jane on a tour of the unrestricted areas of the University, and she accepts with a little too much alacrity (Lambert doesn't know her yet). As they are strolling about, they see a bowler-hatted man cutting across the forbidden Midsummer Green. When they attempt to stop him, he bolts. Jane and Lambert then discover a Senior Scholar's study that has been ransacked. It belongs to Lambert's friend, the mysteriously absent Nicholas Fell.
Slowly (very slowly, indeed) Jane and Lambert are involved in a plot to steal the secret, magical weapon called the Agincourt Device. When, after many pages the villain finally has them at his mercy, he brandishes the weapon and brags that he has already used it on Jane's brother. The Agincourt Device transforms people into beasts, and her brother got turned into a border collie. The villain remarks:
"Still, it suits him (Jane's brother). Relatively high intelligence, a keen sense of duty, and a glossy black coat with touches of white. My first successful transformation."
"What have you done with him?" Jane demanded..."
"He's around here somewhere. Cook gives him kitchen scraps."
The whole book is reflected in the above dialogue: dry, witty, with touches of unexpected magic. It never quite caught fire like its predecessor, "A College of Magics," but the love story is rather sweet, Jane's brother is recovered from his doggy state, the Magical Universe is brought back into balance, and Lambert gets his dearest wish (much to the indignation of some of the more traditional fuddy-duddies at Glasscastle University). I am hoping for a sequel with yet more revelations about the powerful Wardens of the North, South, East, and West.
I would recommend this to anyone who wanted to sit down with a cup of tea (coffee, or lemonade) with a good book. I also suggest checking out her joint compilations; she and Wrede complement each other well.