To be honest I don’t remember buying Thief’s Magic. According to Amazon I bought right when it came out for $2.99 (the price now is $9.99). I looked at my Kindle books one day and it was there. I thought is was a trail or something, like it was only the first chapter or two. Nope. One day a two weeks ago I started reading and found it really interesting. I also bought the audio upgrade for less than $5, so I could listen on the way to work and then pick right back up and read when I could. This was the first time I have bought the upgrade so this will also be a review of that.
Score: 8 out of 10
Thief’s Magic is the first book in the newest trilogy, from Trudi Canavan, Millennium Rule. Trudi is known for writing other trilogies such as; Age of the Five Gods Trilogy, The Black Magician Trilogy, and The Traitor Spy Trilogy. Thief’s Magic was released in May 2014.
Thief’s Magic is split into two separate stories. The first is about a boy named Tyen Ironsmilter, an archaeology/sorcery student. Who finds a magic book named Vella, who was once a woman over a thousand years ago. Her purpose is to collect and share knowledge. Some of her knowledge is looked down upon as radical ideals about the professors at the Academy .
The other story is about a girl, Rielle. She is the daughter of the town’s dyer. The only thing her mother cares about is making sure the family image is upheld. It’s her goal to make sure that her daughter, Rielle, marries into a well respected family. Where Rielle grew believes that magic should only be used by the Angels and if a mortal uses magic then they are stealing from the Angels and are tainted and will, in a sense, burn in hell. Rielle has the ability to see Stain. That means she has the ability to use magic, if taught. After an unfortunate encounter with a tainted, Rielle’s life is changed forever. She falls in love with a painter (not the tainted). Artisans aren’t looked well upon, so her family would never approve. She also tries to think of a way to help the priests catch the person corrupting people into becoming tainted.
I found Tyen’s story the most compelling. While Rielle’s story did eventually get somewhat interesting halfway through, I kept reading/listening for when it went back to Tyen. If the book didn’t start with Tyen, I would have completely lost interest. I’m very picky when it comes to reading books. That’s why you don’t see a lot of book reviews on this site. I like action, and other than the encounter with the tainted, Rielle’s story had none.
The use of magic is way more common in Tyen’s story than in Reille’s because of the whole anti-magic religion that Reille is apart of. The way magic is described is interesting. Magic is in the air and people who use magic pulls it into themselves to “cast spells”. The absence of magic left behind is described as a black cloud. Tyen calls it Void and Rielle calls it Stain.
While both stories never intersect the stories are definite parallels of each other. Both deal with being betrayed by someone they trusted, that leading to being separated/estranged from family and friends. A;sp both learn that the places that they live aren’t as great as they once thought and are in fact deeply flawed and corrupt.
The biggest problem I had was, not with the book itself, but the audio upgrade. What I was expecting was the Audible version with some extra features. Features like, the audio starting on the page that was reading last, or highlighting the words as I both read and listened at the same time. Those it did. But the problem was the audio. It was sometimes skip half of words, or sentences, or even whole paragraphs. I only noticed it happening at the end of chapters. It would sound something like this, “Rielle walked ups——tper 15”. When I went back and tried to force the audio to read that last paragraph, an error would appear saying “Professional narration not available on this page.” So the only thing you can do is be quick on the pause button and hope that the next red light is long enough to quickly finish the paragraph. Not that I did that.
If I had to pick one flaw in the book itself it would be the transition between chapters. Well the issue wouldn’t exist if the audio didn’t skip like it did. When there’s a cliffhanger at the end a chapter and the next chapter doesn’t start right where it left off but instead going to do a flashback of what happened three paragraphs later. I don’t know if the audio skipped a whole page or what. I left me franticly pulling my phone out to pause and go back and read when I had the chance. Here is an example of what I mean, without spoilers;
“The room [pronoun] entered was not large, but made up for it in grandeur. Tall windows allowed in the afternoon light, currently a deep red from the setting sun. The colour reflecting off the gliding on the paintings and plasterwork made it look as if the room was on fire. It also cast the occupants of the room into russet-edged shadows, so [character name] had to squint to see their faces.
When [pronoun] did, [possessive adjective] blood froze.
“[Character name],” [Antagonist] said, “We’ve been looking for you everywhere.”
After this there’s a break and there are a couple chapter about the other character.
[Character name] rubbed [possessive adjective] face, yawned and leaned back against the [spoiler]. It had been a gusty night and, with the wind making [spoiler] bob and jerk against the tether, [pronoun]’d not slept well…”
This is where I started to panic, and scramble for my phone to pause. Thinking that the audio had skipped again. Turned out that there was a flashback to what did happen a couple paragraphs later. Like I said not a issue with the book but with the flawed audio making me think there was a problem.
I really did end up enjoying the book and I’m looking forward to book two coming out this November. Whether I get the audio upgrade again or not I haven’t decided yet. I might just go straight audiobook. I’ve found I’m more likely to finish a book if I buy the audiobook.