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Winds of Fate (The Mage Winds, Book 1) Mass Market Paperback – July 7, 1992
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From Publishers Weekly
First of a new trilogy, Lackey's fantasy novel, again set in the imperiled magical realm of Valdemar, features strong and believable men, women and creatures.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
Mercedes Lackey is a full-time writer and has published numerous novels and works of short fiction, including the bestselling Heralds of Valdemar series. She is also a professional lyricist and a licensed wild bird rehabilitator. She lives in Oklahoma with her husband, artist Larry Dixon, and their flock of parrots.
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Unfortunately, I have been disappointed over and over again by the number of typos in the kindle versions of these books. The best explanation I can come up with, is that some one used an OCR scanner on the original manuscript and then didn't read this version or spell check it. Merc - short for mercenary is almost always "mere". And that is one of the easier misspellings to decode. Frequently a word will end have an 'm' instead of 'rn'. There are too many other misspellings to list, and now I am running into incidences of "gobbledygook" that I can't decode.
How am I supposed to encourage my kids to read these books when the misspelling frequently ruins the context and flow of the story? I am very disappointed and hope that an edited/ update will be released soon.
So far I have found these problems in the first 3 trilogies.
But again, the story itself is perfectly fine. The ebook formatting is at times really bad. It's strange, too, because "The Last Herald-Mage" ebooks didn't have these formatting issues.
First, the story. This is part of her Valdemar series and is a slight departure from the brand up to this point. This is the first story, after By the Sword to blend the two parts of the universe together. It follows two distinct plot and narrative voices that are completely disconnected until the end of the novel. That is not the usual Valemar narrative approach up to this point, so that's a bit of a welcome change.
The story itself follows the standard formula: our hero(s) set off to fix The Thing that's wrong, face myriad difficulties, not the least of which springs from character flaws, and then they fix The Thing at the end (or at least, enough so that there is a satisfying resolution that can lead to the next story in the trilogy). I'm making light of this, but the formula works. Lackey does a great job wiht characters, they have flaws we can all relate to, and they are generally good people doing their best. It's a great way to spend ones time, hanging out with people that you'd actually like to meet in real life.
But the text! I'm shocked and appalled at how badly this has been ported over to Kindle. I had owned the paper back when it first came out and decided I wanted to revisit some "old friends" and have had, at times, trouble reading it. Text is very important in this story, because the author uses italics to indicate a specific communication method or language used. This book screws up the italics often, inserts random italics and bold text, has poorly placed hyphens, line breaks, and other formatting. DAW should be ashamed of charging money for this and Lackey should demand that they stop having her books remind people of sloppy self-publishing efforts. And Kindle should seriously consider strong-arming DAW to quit putting out such a poor example of what e-text can be.
Note: the next book in the series is little better from a textual standpoint.
Elspeth must find a way to bring magery back to Valdemar. Instead of following the convenient plan set out for her, she chooses to ride a different path - much to the consternation of her traveling companions.
Honestly, I found Darkwind's sections boring, and often found myself skipping through them impatiently. The best part of those were the griffins!
I don't see the same character faults in Elspeth that she sees in herself. Nevermind. I'm not sure if it's a character inconsistency or something else wrong with the writing.
There were some inconsistencies with Skif's characters. Elspeth says that Skif's uncle was a thief, and Skif followed in his footsteps, but if you've read 'Take a Thief', you'll know this isn't the case. Also, the ending, I felt that what he might be planning to do would be outside what was required of him as a herald.
This is a great refresher on magic in Valdemar if you've forgotten all about it since Vanyel's time. Lots of useful history and other good things.
I'm positive there are some redeeming factors for this book - I've certainly read them more than once. But I'm hardly ever attracted to them when they sit on my shelf ready to read, so that must say something as well.