“You’re never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read to a child.” –Dr. Seuss
A talented journeyman portrait artist and son of a successful merchant, his life upended is forced to choose between certain failure in his current profession, or to take a gamble and train as an Imager (sorcerer) on Imagisle. A highly dangerous, unpopular and unknown profession.
This is a great place to start for readers new to Modesitt. It's a relatively smaller series, one of his better books, and a good example of his style of writing.
Modesitt creates an interesting world and goes into depth on the politics, economy, culture and religion of the world. The magic system is top notch, incredibly detailed and believable. He walks the perfect line between magic powerful enough to be interesting, but limited enough that he doesn't write himself into a corner where his foes have to be gods to challenge him and any problem can be solved as easily as snapping fingers.
If you want to immerse yourself a great new world, if you are looking for an interesting and great magic system, then this book is for you.
William Dufris is a great narrator. Each character is differentiated very well.
The story was good. a little slow but worth the wait. It is definitely a set up story for the rest of the series. ill continue in the folio. The narrator was good. The voices weren't as varried as some other narrators and the voice he uses for the main character seems a little more pompous than the character should be in my opinion. All in all he was good though. Very consistent.
As big name of the wind fans this was a bit slower but we felt happily connected to the characters by the end. Not as gripping, but a great story and we've already downloaded the next one.
I was a little confused at first because it starts like a timeline but it does make a little sense as a progressing of the main character life. After that, the story was great and thoroughly enjoyed it!
First of all, I am not a fan of the narrator's portrayal of the main character. The story is long and seems convoluted (it's not in the end, the author just takes a very long time to come to the climax of the story and thus reveal the point of the conflict in the book). I am an avid listener and consumer of audiobooks, but I could not keep track of many of the auxiliary characters, and therefore plot points, throughout this tale. I would recommend reading this book versus listening to it so that the names of the characters discussed are more clearly identified and separated from one another. I did enjoy the personal aspects to the main character's story, but the technical and political portions (where the conflict within the novel plays out) did not lend themselves to being easily consumed and digested as I was driving around running errands or back and forth to work or recreational activities. This is a book best served by print not audio.
Once again, Modesitt has me chasing all of his books in another series!
Imager is well thought out, and has an even pace to it. While all of Modesitt's books tend to be recognizable in many ways by his writing style, and his attention to details that most other authors frankly don't do, (because they can't. I mean this guy knows details to crafts that I never even began to think about!), his new Imager series is a whole new look at fantasy magic and life in another time or world. While I have seen comments regarding these books as being somewhat disheartening, I am glad that I decided to check it out myself, and believe that this series is as good as, if not better, then the Recluse series.
My only complaint is that Modesitt tends to drop characters after 3 stories (he proves me wrong with books 4-7), and I hope that he will go back and revisit these characters from the first 3 books.
Constant reader. Likes imaginative work, not formulaic filler.
A narrator with emotional maturity and the talent to portray characters as something other than pompous or petulant would have allowed Modesitt's storytelling to reach the audience. As it is, the story is buried under the dreary, annoying fakery of a man who has no concept of how to identify with characters or audience. On the positive side, his diction is good. If I were Modesitt, I would sue to have the series reproduced with a new narrator.
In the words of Elvis "A little more action." The book was well written in terms of consistency and fleshed out characters. However it reads like a combo of Dickens' "Great Expectations" and a treatise on the political events that led to the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand. Mind you that WW I is not included in the book, that is saved for some future books (I assume)! What little action there was in the story was repetitive and very prosaic. Despite the name and description, do not look for this to be a story of magic and excitement, but of a slow progression of a student through school.
I am getting tired of books that only act as introductions to long series. I guess the subtitle of this one should have been a tip off: "The First Book of the Imager Portfolio." Make the first book an exciting story in itself, rather than a simple introduction of characters and world. It can be done! See "The Fellowship of the Rings" or "Hard Magic." They both manage exciting self contained story arcs while being undeniable starts to a great series.
The reader did a great job of voicing the characters. There was some similarity in voice between the various students, but nothing unacceptable.
I would have greatly collapsed the repetitive "student works hard at learning subject until grudging respect given by teacher" sequences, the "student feels bump on magical shields, sees shadowy figure running away" sequences, and the "student asks master question and is told he isn't ready to know answer" sequences. These things all happened multiple times with minimal other supporting story elements. Admittedly the book would have been much shorter.
I don't have an issue with slow character driven stories (I *liked* "Great Expectations"), but I do have an issue with books that serve primarily as a way to make you buy the next book to get the real story. It's also annoying to have a book that invents an alternate world with different words for occupations, foods, days of the week, units of measurement, etc, but to have all those things be simply different words for the exact same concept in English. Even the "magic" in the book is very prosaic, used for little more than moving substances from point A to point B. Read the manner in which the main character is instructed to detect poisons, and you'll see it's identical to how a "real world" person would detect a poison, except instead of moving substances with hands, substances are moved with "imaging."