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Masques [Audiobook] [Audio CD]

Patricia Briggs , Katherine Kellgren
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
Price: 10.62 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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MP3 CD, Audiobook 10.54  
Audio, CD, Audiobook, 19 Mar 2013 10.62  
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Book Description

19 Mar 2013
After an upbringing of proper behavior and oppressive expectations, Aralorn fled her noble birthright for a life of adventure as a mercenary spy. Her latest mission involves spying on the increasingly powerful sorcerer Geoffrey ae'Magi. But in a war against an enemy armed with the powers of illusion, how do you know who the true enemy is-or where he will strike next?
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio; Unabridged edition (19 Mar 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1469232375
  • ISBN-13: 978-1469232379
  • Product Dimensions: 13.7 x 16.5 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,567,271 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Patricia Briggs graduated from Montana State University with degrees in history and German. She worked for a while as a substitute teacher but now writes full time. Patricia Briggs lives in the Pacific Northwest.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Back to Basics 5 Oct 2010
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Patricia Briggs' first novel is back in print, revised and updated, but at heart the same story she told seventeen years ago. It stars Aralorn, an unconventional heroine, who escaped from her sheltered upbringing by becoming a mercenary, then a spy, which she is very good at thanks to her shapechanger mother. But when she's sent to spy in the master mage's - ae'magi - castle, following rumours of an assassination attempt, no amount of green magic can prepare her for what she finds.

The handsome, kind, charismatic ae'magi is the opposite of what he seems. But no one will believer her. As the ae'magi's spell spreads out across the world, Aralorn is in increasing danger. Until she finds a place where others know the truth. A young king, a band of peasants, herself and Wolf - a mysterious masked mage she'd known for years, mostly as a yellow-eyed wolf - might not seem much in world saving terms, but Aralorn is determined to try. And with secretive Wolf on her side, nothing can go wrong. Can it?

Briggs does high fantasy in wonderful style. True there are clichés galore abounding here - super powerful mages, talking animals, a deposed king, an evil baddie, shape-changers, a normal girl with not so normal powers, secrets, spells and even spirits - but that's what fantasy is all about. Rare indeed is an original tale from this genre, but who cares when the story is well told and the characters are good?

Aralorn (no, not Aragorn) is a spirited heroine, loyal and brave, and smart too. She's full of folktales and stories, and knows just how to handle the skittish, moody Wolf. He also makes for an interesting hero, with his strange magic and dark past. It's fascinating to see him change throughout the story, and always with Aralorn in mind. They make a good pair.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Behind the masques 18 Mar 2010
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Every great author has to begin somewhere -- and with Patricia Briggs, it started with "Masques." Briggs' first novel is pretty obviously a first novel, since she hadn't yet gotten a solid grip on her pacing and her characterization, but there are flickers of brilliance in her shapeshifting heroine and vivid writing.

Aralorn is a shapeshifting spy who gets sent on some various dangerous missions with her friend Wolf, even to spy on the lethal Geoffrey ae'Magi (who uses magic to make people adore him... kind of like a politician). When the crown prince Myr is accused of murdering one of his guards, she knows that the ae'Magi has somehow framed Myr -- and she and Wolf quickly join a small, ragtag rebellion that Myr is forming.

But Aralorn soon discovers that Wolf has some horrendous secrets in his past, some of which involve the ae'Magi and his bloody magic. With zombielike Uriah and a dragon waiting outside Myr's caves -- and the ae'Magi intent on capturing some of their party -- Aralorn and Wolf must find a way to defeat the magician before he gains control of the whole country.

When reading "Masques," it's pretty obvious that this was a very early Briggs work -- the narrative is rather choppy, the worldbuilding is fuzzy (what are these countries again?), and everything bounces from crisis to crisis at a breakneck pace. It's definitely not a bad novel, but it has all the earmarks of an early work, written before the author's rough edges had been rubbed off.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
By sharon TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a rewrite of her first novel Masques, PB was in her early twenties at the time, & in the introduction she is quite candid at how bad her first published edition was. She wanted to put that right & fifteen novels & twenty years later she has. More has been added in the beginning, none of the original pieces have been taken out, just reworked & she even says she's left some of the cliche's & oddities of the original book, it's an expanded version of the original works, just written so much better.

Our protagonist is called Aralon - a rare green wild magic user, mercenary, beautiful, confidant, kind & moral with a spine of steel. She's sent to spy on the powerful Geoffrey ae'Mage who is meant to be above reproach, but is misusing his power to steal magic & plump up his own power base. His machinisations are dark & bloody, which belies the beauty of his face.

There's political intrigue, a magi wolf (who is he?). Aralon must gather intelligence & join a rebellion against the ae'Mage as he is spreading like a cancer throughout her world, can she see through the powerful illusions. Aralon wants to unravel the puzzle that is wolf, there is romantic threads throughout but mainly a political sometimes brutal fantasy fiction.

Enjoyed this rewrite very much. I think Patricia Briggs has put this embarrassing thorn in her side to bed, & can hold her head up high.
The next book in the series is Wolfsbane (Aralorn).

P.S because of the Amazon cross referencing of reviews this review is not for the 1993 Masques edition but for Masques 2010 version.
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