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Patricia A. McKillip is a winner of the World Fantasy Award, and the author of many fantasy novels, including The Riddlemaster of Hed trilogy, Stepping from the Shadows, and The Cygnet and the Firebird. She lives in Oregon.
Delicately skirting the edge of preachiness, World Fantasy Award-winner McKillip (Alphabet of Thorn) demonstrates once again her exquisite grasp of the fantasist's craft in this slender stand-alone novel. Generations ago, the seemingly immortal wizard Od saved the city of Numis from destruction, not out of altruism but because it seemed like a nice place to found a school of magic. Over the years, the practice of magic has come more and more under the king's control. Deciding to stir things up, Od recruits Brenden Vetch, a gardener from the northlands with tremendous raw power and no taste for politics. As Brenden arrives in Numis, so does a fabulous street magician, Tyramin, whose sleight-of-hand looks suspiciously like unauthorized wizardry. King Galin's attempts to control Brendan and arrest Tyramin only scare them away and earn him the scorn of his daughter, Sulys. As with the Narnia books and other fantasy classics with religious or political agendas, if you can shut off your awareness of worldly context, you'll find this an otherworldly delight. Agent, Howard Morhaim. (June 7) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
In the land of Numis, all wizards were taught to serve the king and country, and uncontrolled magic was forbidden. When the legendary wizard Od summons the reclusive Brenden Vetch to her school of wizardry to serve as gardener, she knows that the young man's talent for growing things hides a gift powerful enough to challenge those who pull the wizards' strings. McKillip (In the Forests of Serre) finds poetry in every story she tells, crafting tales that are both personal and universal. Featuring unusual and compelling characters, her latest belongs in most fantasy collections and should appeal to both adult and YA readers. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
"McKillip demonstrates once again her exquisite grasp of the fantasist's craft."--Publishers Weekly"Lyrical prose, well-limned characterizations, vibrant action, a sense of the wonder of magic, and a generous dollop of romance . . . a story that will bind readers in its spell."--Booklist "More enchantments and wonders from McKillip."--Kirkus Reviews "A terrific fantasy tale starring a delightful protagonist, a vile villain, and an assortment of eccentric supporting characters including the mysterious wonderful Wizard of Od. The story line grips . . . mesmerizes readers until the final spell is spun."--Midwest Book Review