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Publisher's Summary

A rich, compelling and laugh-out-loud new series for all teen, YA, adult and fantasy fans.

How do you survive a mage's duel without magic? Kellen's about to risk everything: his family, his home, even his own life....

When you're a Jan'Tep initiate approaching your 16th birthday, you'd better be ready to prove your worth as a mage. Either that or have a miracle on the way. And Kellen isn't counting on either. He knows he'll need a few tricks up his sleeve to avoid disgracing his family and becoming a Sha'Tep servant. So when a sassy, straight-talking traveller arrives in town, Kellen is all ears. Ferius Parfax is jaded but worldly, an exile who lives by her wits and the three decks of cards she carries. She can't teach him to spark his bands and access the seven magics, but with the hand that Kellen's been dealt, he knows he needs all the help he can get....

©2017 Sebastien de Castell (P)2017 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • J
  • 05-23-17

This was fun

This story and it's narrator were great. I loved every minute of it. The magic and the world were unique and kept my attention.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Phenomenal

Well holy $#!+ that was great. I BLEW through this, listening every chance I got. Although I'll very likely grab a hard copy of this book to cherish, I wholeheartedly recommend listening to it, as the narration is sublime, and Sebastien's wit lends itself perfectly to vocal performance.

Enjoy!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Alexander
  • Camp Pendleton, CA, United States
  • 05-10-17

Incredible debut audiobook from fantastic author!

I loved every minute of the story! Funny and Fast with a great magical world.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Magic is a con game.

A magic-less boy tries to find his place among a town full of magic folk.

3.5 stars rounded up. Very fun.

That ending! *screams* I love it!
The story was very intriguing to me, but I didn't like most of the characters.

I did not like the sister or the love interest. The sister was arrogant and whenever she made an appearance, she was a) shunning Kellen, b) using Kellen for meanial tasks, or c) trying to awaken Kellen's powers. Maybe it was her first appearance, (view spoiler) that I just didn't trust her. I did not care for the love interest at first. She didn't have much personality and after (view spoiler), I was done with her. (Also, after that incident, Kellen fears she's mad at him because he slapped her. Wtf.) The author does try to make you feel sorry for her but I. Can't.

Kellen is funny but I hope his character develops.

I hope to see more of Ferius.

I thought I'd love squirrel-cats but I hate them.

Quotes:
♦️ "Can something really be evil for just being what it is?"
♦️ "Life is the curse, love is the cure."
♦️ "First thing you learn wondering the long roads, kid. Everyone thinks they're the hero of their own story."
♦️ "I'm a woman, kid. You probably haven't met one before, coming as you do from this backwards place. But it's like a man only smarter and with bigger balls."

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  • sammys_shelf
  • 09-02-17

Great narration and story!

Fabulous reading of a fabulous book! It's only my 3rd audiobook but if I keep listening to great ones like this I will be spending all money on them!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • peastri
  • 06-27-18

Perfect from the cover to 'the end'.

This one caught me by surprise. I was using it unceremoniously as a filler book until another book I was waiting for came out. I didn't even think I'd finish it in time but I blitzed through it unable to put it down and am now torn between reading the book I was waiting for or picking up Shadowblack. It's the kind of bittersweet conundrum I hope for.


It's a fun and entertaining mess of love, hatred, friendship, betrayal, magic and squirrel cats. Nothing complex or overwhelmingly stupid. Plot reveals are timed nicely some with nifty twists and the pacing is swift and smooth.


For the audio fans: Joe Jameson. No need to say anymore other than brilliant as always.


The cover (UK/AU): Love this cover. It's unique, precisely executed and completely relevant to the story. Nailed it. Full marks from me and right up there with some of my all time favourites.


In short: Readers looking for something fun, light and just plain entertaining will love it. Extra marks because it also looks so handsome on the shelf.