The Magician's Apprentice Hardcover – 5 Feb 2009
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Praise for Trudi Canavan: 'A wonderfully and meticulously detailed world, and an edge-of-the-seat plot, this book is a must for lovers of good fantasy' Jennifer Fallon 'Canavan is a natural storyteller' Emerald City
"A wonderfully and meticulously detailed world, and an edge-of-the-seat plot, this book is a must for lovers of good fantasy." (Jennifer Fallon)
"Canavan is a natural storyteller." (Emerald City) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
Top customer reviews
Having read all of Trudi Canavan's other works, I looked very much forward to this title.
I really wanted to love it, but I wasn't pulled into the story, and it was too easy to put down.
What really makes this book worth reading is Trudi Canavan's way of describing characters. She has a talent not too often seen in the YA fantasy genre, a talent of making characters believable. Nothing is black or white, every character has a multitude of facets. The characters are like real persons, developing throughout the story.
CONCLUSION: Good storyline, lovely believable characters, but a little slow and boring, this is a book you should read if you've read the Black Magician Trilogy and loved it, but if you haven't read Trudi Canavan before, I'd recommend the wonderful Age of the Five Trilogy.
If you have read and enjoyed The Black Magician trilogy (TBM) and The Age of Five (Ao5) trilogy, I'm confident you will enjoy this addition to the Magician's Guild stories. As ever, Trudi Canavan writes well and chapter after chapter flows into a good read.
There are some problems, however. For a prequel set hundreds of years before TBM I often found it difficult to actually notice this. The culture of Elyne is the same, as is that of the other countries. Apart from the magicians, the day to day lives of normal people seems the same. The character of Tessia is very similar to Sonea (BMT) and Auraya (Ao5). I liked her and enjoyed reading about her, but I think Trudi Canavan would have been better writing about a male protagonist, a magician who wasn't a natural or at least someone who differs significantly from her standard main character.
My review is titled 'maintains her standards'. Ms Canavan certainly does that with this book, but she doesn't really improve on them. We still have a young woman with a strong interest in healing who discovers she's a natural magician. As Tessia is so like Sonea, I found myself wondering why Imardin still has slums in Sonea's time.
There was no real sense of place for me, the story did not feel like it was set hundreds of years before Sonea, even though it was before the Magician's Guild was formed. The character of Narvelan changed quickly and the really interesting stories such as the devastation of southern Sachaka by the source-stone were not given much pages. The war between marauding Ichani and Kyralia has been written about before and didn't need re-telling.
That said, I found the discovery of healing magic enjoyable. The side story of Stara was fascinating, offering hints of what might happen in the sequels to BMT. The hints of Duna are also intriguing. It's easy to immerse oneself in the setting and as a read it satisfies.
I have read most of the reviews posted here and I agree with most of them too. If I had to be critical, there could be lots I could find in this book to criticise. This book is not as good as TBM or Ao5; those two trilogies are better. However, the Magician's Apprentice does compliment TBM very well and although a lesser book the differences are slight. However, I still think this deserves three or four stars. It's an enjoyable read, Ms Canavan's writing engages the attention and it's a good story. There's a lot I found in the book that I enjoyed. It's just that it's not the first time we've met this sort of character and this sort of situation.
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