Arhionvar, the dread magic, is coming. Why can't the magisters see that? It is their job, yet only Connwaer, Magister Nevery, and Lady Rowan seem to be able to accept reality. Because he is still banished from Wellmet, it is not easy for Conn to communicate with Nevery; still, they find a way to make their plans to protect the city. First, Conn must find a new locus magicalus. His search takes him deep into a dragon's cave and reveals truths that may ultimately save Wellmet, but at what cost?
Dragons, magic, adventure, and well-developed characters make this an easy draw for upper elementary and middle grade audiences. The story is wholesome, extremely well crafted, and will make readers think!
I don't know if there will be another book after this one, but I have truly enjoyed meeting Connwaer, Nevery, Rowan, and even Captain Kerrn. The stories are well paced with plenty of action, but not so many characters or activities to overwhelm the audience - especially dormant readers.
This is the third volume in this adventure of an orphaned boy who has become a magician-in-training.
This is a book meant for fun reading, but there are lessons in responsibility, problem solving, and community. With older audiences, you could talk about what makes a family, justice/injustice, adult-teen relationships, and symbolism (blackbirds).
9 and Up
8 to 12
Buy. This is a wonderful, wholesome series with plenty of adventure and suspense, but not so much to scare an audience with elementary and middle-grade listeners.