Book Reviews

The Magicians' Guild: Book 1 of the Black Magician (Black Magician Trilogy) by Trudi Canavan

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List Price: £8.99


Paperback: 480 Pages.

Published: 04 March 2010 by Orbit

ISBN: 1841499609

EAN: 9781841499604

The first novel in the bestselling Black Magician Trilogy.


4.0 Stars4.0 Stars4.0 Stars4.0 Stars  by Debra Found

Enjoyable but not altogether original

This is a well written fantasy tale about thieves, magicians & intrigue. Sonea is a slum dwelling girl who discovers quite accidently that she is capable of magic. Unfortunately she finds out in a most public way & the chase is on as the magicians try to find her amongst the slum dwellings in order to teach her how to control her magic and become one of them.

This is a well written book which flows well. However, many of the aspects of the plot reminded me of other fantasy novels including Terry Pratchett's "Equal Rites" & Ursula Le Guin's "Wizard of Earthsea". There was also a predictablility about the whole story which, for me, stopped this book haaving the "wow" factor of a five star rated book & made it a very enjoyable 4 star rating. I saw the ending coming quite some time before it did meaning that the great climax was a little flat for me.

Sonea has the makings of a great character. She is young & quite unworldly when we meet her but as the story unfolds & she finds her magic, she learns a lot about the ways of the world & herself. She begins to understand that the inequality in the world is far more complicated than the black & white that she originally thought. Throughout the book Sonea starts to learn about the world & think for herself. This is a girl who can go places.

The story was ok but not particularly original. There was plenty of action throughout; not necessarily fast action but enough to keep the reader enthralled.

I can see possibilities for this series. The author has left plenty of loose ends & I look forward to seeing there develop in the next installment. I look forward to reading the next book in the series.

5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars  by Anne

A really good read

I purchased this because of an excellent review of the book on this site and I am pleased that I did. This is epic fantasy writing at its best.

The story has the usual ingredients - a young adult coming into their power, a society of thieves with their own rules, an inner circle of powerful magicians, a benevolent older mentor figure and a pseudo-medieval society. it is not particularly original and you can see echoes of other fantasy novels in the plot.

What makes the book worth reading is the excellent storytelling. The world which the author has created is very believable and well described. There are lots of interesting and realistic characters. The rules of magic and its associated power structure hang together well and will obviously create lots of excellent sub-plots in books to come. The world created is sort of like ours but also different enough to make it interesting. The whole book is tied together by the experiences of a young woman who is different from the other characters but who learns about much of this new world with us so that we identify with her and her experiences. The book is a self-contained story which also leads on to a sequel.

There is no sex and little violence in this book. It is the sort of book that you can become completely absorbed in for long periods of time. I very much enjoyed it and am off now to buy the rest in the series.

5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars  by Lou Reading

The Hunt Is On

After reading Trudi Canavans 'Age of Five' Trilogy I had to go back and read her first trilogy 'The Black Magician Trilogy' and the first book of that series is this one, 'The Magicians' Guild' and after reading it I can't wait to read the next one, such a good book.

This story follows a slum girl named Sonea who discovers after throwing a rock at a group of magicians and that it actually hits one, that she has magical skills too.

In the world created in this book, magicians are a hated by the slum dwellers and feared too. It also works the other way around, there is a distinct class structure to the story and of course a slum dweller is right at the bottom. One of the last people anyone would want to have magical ability.

So a chase begins, the magicians are desperate to find Sonea. She is desperate not to be found and the author could have really sped this up but she doesn't, the hunt is drawn out and for that the story is so much better. The reader is lead to see the magicians as dark and untrustworthy to start with but as the story progresses we see that is not always so and during the chase I found myself hoping she would be caught.

Fantastic ending with a huge twist that leads onto the next book, cant wait.

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