Author: Sebastien de Castell.
Publisher: Hot Key Books.
Page count: 416.
Release day: May 4th 2017.
Genre: YA, Fantasy.
Rating: 4 stars.
What is it about? (Summary from GoodReads)
There are three things that earn you a
man’s name among the Jan’Tep. The first is to demonstrate the strength to
defend your family. The second is to prove you can perform the high magic that
defines our people. The third is simply to reach the age of sixteen. I was a
few weeks shy of my birthday when I learned that I wouldn’t be doing any
of those things.
Magic is a con game.
Kellen is moments away from facing his first mage’s duel and the start of four trials that will make him a spellcaster. There’s just one problem: his magic is gone. As his sixteenth birthday approaches, Kellen falls back on his cunning in a bid to avoid total disgrace. But when a daring stranger arrives in town, she challenges Kellen to take a different path. Ferius Parfax is one of the mysterious Argosi – a traveller who lives by her wits and the three decks of cards she carries. She’s difficult and unpredictable, but she may be Kellen’s only hope…
I’ve seen this book around so often and it always sparked my interest. But for some reason I just did not pick it up. And then it was announced that it would be the groupbook for the NEWTs, so it was finally time for me to read it!
The reason why this book really interested me is because I thought it included a magic school. Which yes, but not really. It is only quite a small part of the actual story.
I really really like the magic system in this book. I loved that it was different for everyone.
This book really has some interesting characters. Everyone expected Kellen to be powerful, but he struggles creating the smallest breeze. Which is concerning since he is almost 16 and if by then he has no magic he will became Sha’Tep. The Sha’Tep do the manual labour and serve the mages. Him trying to figure out how to fix this results in an Intriguing plot.
I’m struggling writing this review. I enjoyed the story, it was funny an interesting. But also a bit underwhelming, I think I set my own expectations pretty high.
I really liked the card aspect of the book, but it was not that big of a part in this book. Which you would expect based on the cover haha. But based on the ending I think it will be a bigger part in the sequel. Which I’m definitely planning to read sometime soon!
Again a review that is a bit all over the place, it’s because I read this in my vacation and waited way to long to write this.. But I hope it was helpful in some way.