"Vigorously told deceptions and battle scenes." ~Publishers Weekly review of Eolyn

"The characters are at their best when the events engulfing them are at their worst." ~Publishers Weekly review of High Maga

Monday, January 30, 2012

A Reckless Form of Magic

In Chapter 10 of Eolyn, the young maga tells her tutor Ghemena of a dream she had in which Akmael was slain on the battlefield.  Eolyn, frightened by the dream and concerned for her friend's future, wonders whether it might have been a vision, but the older witch scoffs at her, insisting it was only a dream.

"Divination is a reckless form of magic," Ghemena reminds her ward, and though the words do little to quiet Eolyn's fears, she accepts the older woman's teaching for the time being. 

Ghemena's truism reflects more than personal conviction.  The tradition of the Magas and Mages of Moisehén rejects outright any form of prophecy or divination.  Even though certain cultures, such as the Syrnte, practice divination with some dexterity, for a maga like Ghemena this sort of magic is at best an idle curiosity and at worst a tool that destroys hope and opportunity by undercutting faith in our own choices and the power of self-determination.

In addition to honoring the teachings of her predecessors, Ghemena may have some very personal reasons for her vehement rejection of divination.  Although these reasons are never fully revealed in the novel, they are hinted at in various places, including the scene we get to listen to today, an audio recording of Chapter 44 that has been kindly donated by friend and fellow author David Hunter.

This scene features the wizard Tzeremond, top advisor to Akmael's father Kedehen, and the man who oversaw the brutal purging of the Magas and the establishment of an exclusively male-centered tradition of magic.  Depending on your interpretation of the history behind the War of the Magas, Tzeremond -- and Kedehen along with him -- can be seen as extraordinarily cruel and calculating, or simply pragmatic albeit rather misguided.  I will have to let you read the novel (if you haven't already) to decide for yourself. 

In the meantime, I hope you enjoy this wonderful reading.  And many thanks to David for providing it.

While you're out visiting blogs this week, may I suggest you also stop by Heroines of Fantasy, where we have a wonderful guest post by Jodie Meadows, author of Incarnate, on the Vilification of Wool.

Also, lately Amazon has been offering a great price on the beautiful hardcover edition of EolynI encourage you to take advantage of the sale while it lasts.  The glossy book jacket features original cover art by Jesse Smolover, and the acid-free pages carry an epic adventure that will live in your memory and grace your bookshelf for a lifetime.  Already have your copy?  Then it's time to start thinking about gifts. 

And what better gift to give than magic? 

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a great week!