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Tuning the Symphony Paperback – March 15, 2016
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About the Author
I am a North Carolina native and a lifelong fan of science fiction and fantasy. In no particular order, I am a mechanical engineer, a karate instructor, a video and board gamer, a reader, and a writer. In my spare time, I wrangle three cats and a bald guinea pig, and my wife wrangles me (not an easy task). We both enjoy putting our pets in cute little costumes and then taking pictures of them repeatedly.
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Top customer reviews
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A potential profession of a magic user is that of psychology. That profession is what the protagonist, Rilan, aspires to be. Rilan at the start of the novel is about to ascend from apprentice to fully fledged majus. She endures trials, competing against Vethis, an elitist apprentice she has contempt for as he is of a higher social standing and holds it above others. Although the worlds of the universe are connected through the Grand Symphony and magic, schisms of old remand. Classism and xenophobia are still alive and well.
But the novel doesn't primarily dwell on those themes. They are lurking off to the side but it's mostly about magic and people trying to abuse it. The plot feels like it could have been broken into two distinct parts, instead it sort of just flows and it feels a little bit strange.
But that didn't bother me that much as I was really enjoying what was going on. The pace was breezy and things were introduced at a comfortable pace. Getting a feel for the world as a treat and I loved the inclusion of artwork of the characters. It helped me visualize the aesthetic and the images were by themselves gorgeous.
The characters were on the flatter side, though. I wished there was more personally about them. Like I wanted a deeper feel into their being. I was left wanting. I want more of them. So the novel really enticed me in that sense.
That it did make me desire more of this world means that Tuning the Symphony was a novel that I enjoyed. So I would definitely recommend it for fantasy fans. The world was intriguing and it was a real page turner. Try it out!
Synopsis (from back cover): Change one note and the universe changes with the Symphony.
One apprentice will become a full majus today. The other will wait months for another suitable challenger. Rilan Ayama is skilled in using her song to change the Grand Symphony of the universe, but her opponent, Vethis, is crafty, and not above a little simple bribery. Though Rilan is counting on the support of her closest friend Origon, he remains absent. She has only a cryptic note saying important matters of his family take precedence, and he needs her help. The mystery pulls Rilan's attention away from the most important test of her life.
Maji create portals between the far flung planets of the Great Assembly of Species, but many places still remain out of easy reach. A search for Origon's brother leads Rilan and her friend across the wilds of one of the ten homeworlds. There, Rilan's fledgling skills are pushed to their limits as they investigate a secret that could bring down all six houses of the maji.