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The Novice: The Black Magician Trilogy, Book 2 | [Trudi Canavan]

The Novice: The Black Magician Trilogy, Book 2

Sonea knows the other novices in the Magicians' Guild all come from powerful families, but she also knows she can turn to Rothen and Dannyl for help when she needs it. Promoted to Guild Ambassador, Lord Dannyl leaves for the Elyne court. His first order from Administrator Lorlen is to resume, in secret, High Lord Akkarin's long-abandoned research into ancient magical knowledge. Not knowing the true reason for his journey, Dannyl is soon facing unexpected dangers.
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Publisher's Summary

The sequel to The Magicians' Guild, one of Bolinda's top-selling audio books. The High Lord, Book 3 in the trilogy, is scheduled for publication in audio late 2008.

Sonea knows the other novices in the Magicians' Guild all come from powerful families, but she also knows she can turn to Rothen and Dannyl for help when she needs it. That is, until somone starts spreading malicious rumors about her - and Akkarin, The High Lord, steps in.

Promoted to Guild Ambassador, Lord Dannyl leaves for the Elyne court. His first order from Administrator Lorlen is to resume, in secret, High Lord Akkarin's long-abandoned research into ancient magical knowledge. Not knowing the true reason for his journey, Dannyl is soon facing unexpected dangers.

Meanwhile, Sonea has almost forgotten the High Lord's dark secret, but keeping the truth hidden may be a grave mistake.

©2004 Trudi Canavan; (P)2008 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

What the Critics Say

"...a wonderfully and meticulously detailed world, and an edge-of-the-seat splot, this book is a must for lovers of good fantasy." - Jennifer Fallon

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (776 )
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Story
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2 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Aaron Gerber Kansas City, MO. USA 06-05-13
    Aaron Gerber Kansas City, MO. USA 06-05-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    21
    12
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "I should have read the negative reviews..."
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Positive thoughts first. The first book was good. It had a solid story arch and interesting, clear cut character goals. You will likely buy this book to satisfy your curiosity gained from the first one. The narrator for the book did a great job of allowing the characters to have their own personality and really helped to bring the book to life. So you may also buy it because you like the narrator. That said the second book was all but dead, despite his talent. Multiple times I verbally screamed at my headphones.


    What was most disappointing about Trudi Canavan’s story?

    There is a rule that you cannot practice magic outside of class in the book, but apparently, as the Pirates of the Caribbean put it, “They’re more like guidelines.” The rule is broken over and over again. It would have been better if it never had existed. It ruined my suspension of belief.

    Brandon Sanderson, an amazing fantasy writer, wrote this wonderful article titled Sanderson’s First Law. In it he talks about soft magic and hard magic, detailing how magic systems can have hard fast laws or be that mysterious thing that makes our pulse quicken. You cannot solve stories with soft magic because then you have Deus ex machina. Well, in my opinion, the rules are vague enough for the magic in the book for it to be considered soft magic, and the resolution is so tied to magic that I feel that’s exactly what happened at the end: Deus ex machina. (In simple English weak story telling)

    Another thing that left a bad taste in my mouth was the inconsistent character decisions. Over and over again I felt like the characters were performing actions to move the story forward, not because that is what they would do. I’d tell you how but so much of the story rested on decisions that I felt were unbelievable or inconsistent for the character.

    The story arch was muddled and confusing. It wasn’t clear until the very end of the book what the main character wanted to accomplish… or at least how she was trying to accomplish this goal.

    Finally, the secondary story arch was completely unneeded. (More on this later)




    Which character – as performed by Richard Aspel – was your favorite?

    High Lord Akkarin was masterfully turned into a sinister friend by the narrator. I knew the High Lord wanted things to stay friendly, but at the same time I worried over why he kept his friends in the dark. That said, I never found out. (More on this later).


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Novice?

    Lord Dannyl’s story arch could have been skipped entirely. If ever it was apparent that an author was trying to push his or her worldview on the reader it would be here. Preachy on the level of a pastor. The relevance to the main story plot could have been stripped out into a few summary sentences and the things happening around Sonea could have been explained more fully.

    For example… what on earth is High Lord Akkarin up to? Can he be trusted? That’s what I bought the second book for. By the end of this book, I strongly believed there would be no decent explanation as to why he was keeping his friends in the dark, and by the way, there isn’t an explanation in this book for that.


    Any additional comments?

    Epilogue. An epilogue isn’t really part of the main story, and yet, it revealed in a few minutes, everything that I wanted to know over the course of the book. In summary, all but the epilogue was a waste of time. She should have focused on covering that content throughout the book and not half of what she did cover. I would have loved a book that focused on the High Lord, versus another novice who antagonizes her like he is 4 years old, with little believable motivation.

    My advice, go buy The Way of Kings.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alain maplewood, NJ, USA 04-02-10
    Alain maplewood, NJ, USA 04-02-10 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    36
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    129
    11
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    1
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    Overall
    "Usually agree"

    I usually agree with most of the reviewers of an audiobook before I end up buying it. Not so much this time. This story is just "ok".

    1) It drags A LOT
    2) The antagonists behavior and the protagonist's reaction to it don't really draw me into the story. I think part of the problem is that we don't really get a true sense of who the antagonist is. Something just feels a bit off about the way they interact with each other.
    3) The "research" plot line could be eliminated completely. Every time the audio switched over to that story I wanted to rip my eyes out. Also what's with the doubts and questions surrounding homosexuality? It just didn't make any sense, nor did the heterosexuality either. There's no passion of either kind. The author should have just stuck to the magic and left sexuality out; it wasn't believable when it was brought into the story.
    3 Stars because:
    a) the "magic" part of the book held my interest...
    b) the book got better once I hit the 2X speed on my ipod (the narrator is a SLOW reader too)


    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ken 06-08-12
    Ken 06-08-12 Member Since 2014

    I absolutely love my audible account, makes its from enjoying a book to loving the stories found in the books. Do forgive my errors in the reviews i do have dyslexia but i will share my love with everyone

    HELPFUL VOTES
    108
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    114
    75
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    FOLLOWING
    16
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing"
    Where does The Novice rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The Novice is a great book to listen to, Richard Aspel makes Trudi Canavan's book come to life, he shows emotion and speaks clearly


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura 07-20-11
    Laura 07-20-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    382
    12
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    2
    0
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    Performance
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    "The Magician's Guild"

    Very enjoyable listen. This audible book helped me through my spring cleaning. Thank you very much. Your fan.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Janeite 04-09-09
    Janeite 04-09-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    74
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    346
    46
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    FOLLOWING
    3
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    Overall
    "second book is great"

    The first book to a bit to get into, but I really enjoyed this one! I cared about the characters a lot, and there was lots of suspense and a couple of different plots. Going for the third one now.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Garry Pembroke Pines, Florida, United States 03-18-09
    Garry Pembroke Pines, Florida, United States 03-18-09 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    42
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    71
    21
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    0
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    "Great trilogy"

    worth the time and money spent it keep me going on all three books. wish they had more.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christopher Steele 11-05-09 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    75
    2
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    0
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    "good but really?"

    The book is entertaining, but a caution. If you dont not appreciate hints about homosexuality, or perhaps do not want your children hearing about it, do not get this book.

    10 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    strange child Florida 06-02-15
    strange child Florida 06-02-15

    strange child

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not Worth a Second Chance"
    Would you try another book from Trudi Canavan and/or Richard Aspel?

    No.


    What could Trudi Canavan have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Recognize that old men are likely to have more mature, meaningful inner monologues than teenage girls. Understand Story structure, build a little excitement.


    What didn’t you like about Richard Aspel’s performance?

    The material he was presenting. I also did not care for the stereotype accents adopted for the characters, they seemed forced and sometimes not appropriate to the character.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carrie E Sullivan 01-07-15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Weaving a web of plots and story lines."
    Would you listen to The Novice again? Why?

    Yes! This second book in the Black Magician's Trilogy pulls on the strings of the many different character stories and weaves them together into a compelling story.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The High Lord. One of the few characters who's story is still wrapped in a cloak of mystery. He's intriguing and beguiling and it sucks you into the story!


    What does Richard Aspel bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I'm sure that Richard Aspel would add something to the right story. However, this series is not one that I actually enjoy him reading.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Not extreme, but it did certainly leave me wanting more.


    Any additional comments?

    Love this book and have read it and/or listened to it three times already!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Yette Spokane, WA USA 08-05-14
    Yette Spokane, WA USA 08-05-14 Member Since 2012
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    16
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Sorry, made me give up on the series"
    What would have made The Novice better?

    More action! The setting for this book is mostly the University of the Magician's Guild. The small area becomes tedious as the character continues to be tormented, struggle with classes, etc. It doesn't feel as if anything really is tense or exciting.
    I had hoped that other characters would expand the world-building, and it does happen somewhat. However, it's not enough to make up for the boredom of the main story line.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    I found myself frequently wondering how much farther I had until the book was completed, rather than just finding myself immersed in the world and enjoying the story.
    I often felt the characters' thoughts were used to lecture at the reader & express the author's view on topics.


    Any additional comments?

    I gave up. I really wanted to finish the book so that I'd feel I gave a totally complete review. This is an honest review, nonetheless. I only made it about 90% through, then finally realized the time just wasn't worth my lack of enjoyment.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Frances
    Fareham, Hampshire, United Kingdom
    5/18/10
    Overall
    "Enjoyable reading"

    Narrative: Brilliant series, I loved reading the novels the first time round and the audio versions have not diminished my love for these books. Faster pace than The Magician's Guild makes this story far harder to stop listening/reading.

    Narrator: Easier to tell between point of view transitions, it has slightly improved since The Magician's Guild. The sample gives an accurate idea of what the narrator will sound like throughout the reading. As long as you do that and find you don't mind his voice, then you should be ok.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Nadia
    Fleet, United Kingdom
    7/9/09
    Overall
    "A fantastic sequel"

    This book takes up where The Magician's Guild left off. Sonea begins her training at the univercity under the kindly guardianship of her mentor, Rothen. She must deal with contempt and hostility from both her teachers and her classmates, and all the while, the shadow of High Lord Akkarin and his terrible secret looms over her. This book is somewhat darker than the previous story, but the author's excellent characterisation and engaging style are just as evident. A must-listen if you liked the first book.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Clare
    England
    11/27/08
    Overall
    "Amazing"

    I have read this book and also got it from audible, it is brilliant if a little hard to get in to. But worth the effort. Cant wait for all her other books to become unabridged on audible.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • MR
    STOCKPORT, United Kingdom
    8/14/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great story voicing a bit off"

    Loved the book and sonea's fight in the arena is epic. When she won there was totally a mini fist pump.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • James Timoney
    Manchester
    4/12/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "review"

    A good easy listen just has good has first book going to download load the next one now

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs. Lorraine J. Brown
    UK
    1/2/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A fun bok"
    Where does The Novice rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is one of the best books I have read


    What other book might you compare The Novice to, and why?

    This is only the first type of fantasy book I have read


    Have you listened to any of Richard Aspel’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    No but will look out for him


    Any additional comments?

    As a visually impaired listener having a story brought to life in this manner is nearly as good as reading IT yourself

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • barry
    1/1/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "loved it, addictive listening"

    loved this trilogy, each of the three books were brilliant, captivating adverse to listen too

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • CreativeSoulSOT
    9/5/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A griping sequel"
    Would you listen to The Novice again? Why?

    yes, I read this some years ago and enjoyed it so much I brought it to listen to again.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Christopher
    Telford, United Kingdom
    7/14/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Long-Winded Filler"


    Story – 3/5

    Truth be told, I found that this book went on for quite a while with not a lot actually happening. It was entertaining enough, which is why I give it a 3/5 for story, but I do think a young adult would enjoy this more than I did. I was waiting for something big to happen at the end, but I was left very under whelmed. There was very little action in it, and centred a little too much on the bullying aspect at the guild between novices rather than moving the over-arching story along.

    Trudi Canavan’s strongest point is making very likeable characters. They can be a bit one-dimensional at times but this could be down to the target audience. The world she has created is also quite good, with the magic system, social classes, and politics being detailed enough to make the reader want to learn more.

    I have heard that the 3rd book in the trilogy is the best of the 3, and redeems the other 2 books, so I will definitely persevere (plus I bought all 3 together in the sale).


    Performance – 3/5

    Richard Aspel’s reading is consistent with the first book in the novel. If you didn’t like that, you won’t like this. I don’t think he is quite as bad as other people are making out though, and if you are laid-back about this sort of thing like me, you will no doubt be fine with him. If you are still unsure, you can always return the book and get another

    He tends to read the novel like it is only children that will be listening, which is wrong to do. He over emphasises the thoughts and speech of the characters, making the younger people sound very whiney. His voice acting gives each character a distinctly recognisable voice though, and he does well to set the atmosphere of the scenes.


    Overall – 3/5

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • craig
    7/7/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Sub plot better than the main one"
    Would you listen to The Novice again? Why?

    Yes found it very engrossing listened to it on every dog walk or break time at work


    What did you like best about this story?

    The subplot of Daniel and tayend


    What three words best describe Richard Aspel’s performance?

    Boring and heavy breathing


    Any additional comments?

    The book on a whole is great, but I'm still not sure mr aspel is the right choice, tedious English dialects is his only go to

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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