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Publisher's Summary

"The Innocent Mage is come, and we stand at the beginning of the end of everything." Being a fisherman like his father isn't a bad life, but it's not the one that Asher wants. Despite his humble roots, Asher has grand dreams. And they call him to Dorana, home of princes, beggars, and the warrior mages who have protected the kingdom for generations. Little does Asher know, however, that his arrival in the city is being closely watched by members of the Circle, people dedicated to preserving an ancient magic. Asher might have come to the city to make his fortune, but he will find his destiny.

©2007 Karen Miller (P)2010 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"A solid epic that posits political intrigue, ethereal prophecies and a rags-to-riches hero against a vivid if familiar fantasy backdrop." ( Publishers Weekly)

What listeners say about The Innocent Mage

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting

Would you listen to The Innocent Mage again? Why?

I would yes, because this book is full of different human aspects, ranging from hidding secrets to sibling rivalry, desire to learn at great risk to trying to do whats right.

Who was your favorite character and why?

King Borne, even though he does not play a huge role in this book, he is what I invision a fair and just king. he cares for his subjects and does what he can to make sure they continue to be safe. Unlike most of the Doranen he accepts the Olken as a major part of his kingdom and does not look down on them. one part of the book a young man breaks a major law and must be exicuted. Borne showed compassion to the young man and kept the execution to the people who judged him only. He walks the fine line of balance in the kingdom showing justice and love at the same time.

Which character – as performed by Kirby Heyborne – was your favorite?

Prince Gar, just how Heyborne portrays Gar's acceptance of Asher, his inward laughing at the pranks but how he cant show it. to me thats well done

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

I did laugh at some of the things that Asher does and says.

Any additional comments?

This book is a little slower to get started, but just wait it will be worth it

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • NC
  • 09-15-12

Great emotion, though the plot's a bit lacking

I have mixed feelings about this book, because while I liked the characters and felt deeply for them, there wasn't much in the way of originality here. The highlight was Asher, who defies the likable farm boy stereotype by being belligerent, selfish, self-centered...and entirely fascinating to watch crash through his version of life. His friendship with Gar is a great buddy story, but the rest of the plot lines are less defined. Also, this is only half of a book, so beware the blatant cliffhanger.

Kirby Heyborne did an excellent job at narration, and I loved his portrayal of Asher. His narration was a good part of my enjoying this story.

8 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Heroic Fantasy well written

This was my first experience with Karen Miller's work. I enjoyed both books in this series very much. This is Fantasy with characters I could understand, a lot of raw emotion, and a rich background story only hinted at. Looking at the other books available, I can see that the history behind the Innocent Mage is out there as well. Miller breaks a couple 'rules' of writing and does it very well. She writes in dialect, and she calls real things by made up names. These rules are meant to be broken, but it takes a good fantasy writer to do it. She succeeds. The narrator of these books handled the dialect very well but does not return to read the series that comes after, and that may be a difficult switch. I was looking for long fantasy novels where I could get involved with the characters and not have my attention wander. Miller gave me that and I will continue to read her novels. The only criticism I have is that she seems to be dancing around a religious allegory and that was a bit distracting. I may be confusing the basic progression of "The Hero's Journey" with religious allegory... something to think about. It may also just be my imagination, and if so, she has touched on an issue in Fantasy I strongly believe in. We have to be able to believe in the character's world before we can believe in them. If it is too alien, we shouldn't just be dropped into the deep end unless we already know how to swim. That doesn't say it very well, but I've read books where I've drowned, and a few brilliant works that I have learned to swim in. I prefer to wade in and swim out to the deep end when I'm comfortable. These are well worth the time to listen to.

13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good story, can be slow

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

I think this book is worth the time, provided your not hugely interested in books based around action. Its a fairly solid world. Not great, This book flows around characters and the drama surrounding them, within a fantasy setting. Unfortunately not all the characters are built well. but there are some good ones, and is worth the read if you Like books based around character drama and development.

Would you recommend The Innocent Mage to your friends? Why or why not?

It depends. Some i would, some i wont. I think a lot of people would find this and its squeal boring.

Have you listened to any of Kirby Heyborne’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

These two books are the only two ive heard from him but, he does a solid job, Though this is one of the issues with the books. Either the reader potrays many moments as very Soap opera-esk And seems overly dramatic at times. Or maybe thats the book and its writing. To tell i would need to listen more from Kirby, But this audiobook was very... overly dramatic at times.

Was The Innocent Mage worth the listening time?

For the most part, yes. Beginning drags but for most of it, its a solid piece of work

Any additional comments?

This book ends in a straight up cliff hanger. and its very very irritating if you want even some kind of resolution, but it offers none, You need to have the next book ready. Its basically one long book broken up into two. The biggest difference between this and its sequel is the tone.

If you like character dramas, and have some extra money, go for it. If not, pass this over

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

At least she got the cliff in cliffhanger right

What could Karen Miller have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Karen could have actually made the "innocent mage" actually do something seemingly relevant to the title or heroic and a villian beyond that of a Simpson's Mr. Burns saying "excellent, excellent" and mocking those that surround him. The set-up was there but the author decided to say hell with it and made the action parts bland and could have just called the book "The Innocent guy who befriends a prince and gets his heart toyed with by a descendant of a prophet" I like the hero, but I expect a hero to do perform the duty assigned. For example, a knight protects the kingdom, a barbarian goes crazy with a sharp weapon, and perhaps a mage at least uses magic in some fashion, even if its the last 5 words of the book. "Awakened Mage" is past tense right so shouldn't he awaken prior to it.

5 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Dissapointed.

Paper thin characters and plot. The villain was so very thin I thought it was a ruse and that something deeper and more interesting was waiting to be revealed. But alas that was not to be.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

A great novel

I really enjoyed this book. The writing and the characters make this one of my favorite novels of all times. The narration brings it all to life like no other audio book I have listened to yet. I recommend this book strongly!

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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I love Karen Miller

Such a delight to listen to everytime. Karen Miller's characters are one of a kind.

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This Is My Trash

I read this series as a teenager, and teen sci-fi fantasy is a good frame of reference when describing this book. It’s not for everyone but is absolutely one of those books you mindlessly and habitually reread if it clicks with you. So how to know if it’s for you?

Weeeellll are you someone who enjoys a lot of action and flashy descriptors of magic like your reading a Harry Dresden Book? Well boom have yourself a heaping pile of politics, colonization, racism, a perspective on disabilities, and religious zealotry and inquisitions set in a magical kingdom where magic is treated as a background prop or maguffin. Yeah the title of this book is a little bit of a catfish I’ll admit it. The teenage boy me was disappointed at first but in the end it hooked me. If you keep reading this review (which is shaping up to be a long sob) you will see why.

What this book does well lives solely in the characters and their emotional content as well as world building . While not all characters are compelling they are given enough thought that there isn’t a character who you can’t vividly see in your mind and either say to yourself “I absolutely know someone like this” or “yeah that is absolutely what they would feel or do”. It has a great bromance duo in the main characters who have great give and take dialogue, side note I played this on a road trip and my Girlfriend literally yelled “GAY” in their first few lines of dialogue (in the best way)

Characters are absolutely what this book is good at and the story takes it’s time to unfold with the characters. Which is fine because it basically spills the beans right a way in a sub plot, sure not explicitly, but about halfway through the book it’s fairly clear where it is going. The story is basically a magic boy chosen by destiny affair all of it slowly but surely edging the reader to a climactic showdown. However it’s a journey towards that destiny that is very unique and entertaining.

And since this is an audiobook I’ll end with the narrator, he’s great! Hits the emotional highs and lows just right, his voice acting fits the setting and characters beautifully too.

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A World Of Fantasy That Touches the Heart

I was caught up in this tale of love, loyalty, magic and suspense. The narration was flawless and embedding into my imagination. I felt that I was living the story. I recently started the 2nd book of the series and found my emotions scattered everywhere. You will experience the same, I do not doubt.