While shopping with Steve the other month, he recommended I read The Magicians’ Guild (Book 1) by Trudi Canavan. I’m pleased to say I thoroughly enjoyed The Magicians’ Guild (Book 1) by Trudi Canavan which is the first book in The Black Magician’s Trilogy. The book is split into three distinct parts.
In part 1 we are introduced to the city of Imardin in the land of Kyralia (with some maps). We are quickly absorbed into this world were there are Magicians in a Magician’s Guild and King Merin. King Merin orders for “the purge” to take place once a year to rid the city of the lower class. “The purge” is undertaken by Magician’s from the guild creating a magical forcefield and driving the lower classes out of the city and into the slums. While “the purge” is taking place among the crowd a young girl named Sonea throws a stone at the shield putting her rage behind it. To the surprise of her and the crowd the stone penetrates the shield and knocks a magician unconscious. Chaos follows with the magicians firing force strikes at the crowd. Cery a wannabe thief and friend helps Sonea escape.
They seek refuge with thief’s and start to realise that Sonea has natural magic. The magicians Lord Rothen, Lord Fergun (the magician she had knocked unconscious), Dannyl and others also know that she’s a natural. They know that a magician without control over her magic is dangerous so they go in search for her.
In part 2 a thief agrees to hide her from the magicians guild, thinking that a magician in his employment will be useful in the future. During this period of hiding, Sonea’s magic becomes more unstable and somewhat dangerous (she seems to set fire to a lot of furniture). So Cery sneaks Sonea into the Magician’s Guild with the hopes of learning how to control her power.
However this is unsuccessful an in Part 3 Sonea faces her fear of the Magicians and goes to them for help. A character to particularly take notice of is Akkarin the head of the Magician’s Guild who seems to be hiding something, as Sonea accidentally discovers one night. There is far too much that happens in this book to explain in detail, which is why I’ve kept it brief.
Throughout this book I enjoyed the depth of the introduction of the characters. Each character has motivations, some are apparent whereas others are mysterious. Each character has past experiences that as made them who they are, with their own strengths, weaknesses and flaws. I enjoyed the reading about the classes: the rich living near the palace and the poor living in the slums. And in later books the micro-cultures of the different races is particularising interesting. The micro-cultures influence on the characters gives a hint of realism in a strict fantasy series.
At points in the book it gives experiences of characters, information from dialog that you take note of. You notice these red herrings as they appear unexplained or irrelevant to the story at the time. These red herrings encourage you to keep reading to reveal why the experience or information was given and what it means for the characters and story. Having read all three in the trilogy, these red herrings add to the over arching story of the world of Imardin and each one is an essential link to the next part of this story.
If you’re into fantasy books or would like a good introduction to them I would recommend The Magicians’ Guild (Book 1) by Trudi Canavan.