Blake Charlton, Author . Tor $24.99 (350p) ISBN 978-0-7653-1727-8

Debut novelist Charlton creates a complex world in which magical abilities depend on the ability to handle words. Apprentice wizard Nicodemus Weal was once thought to be the prophesied Halcyon, but his inability to control spells sends him to the bottom of the pecking order. When murders and strange activities coincide with the Convocation at Starhaven, visiting wizards and druids begin to wonder whether Nicodemus might in fact be the anti-Halcyon. While the magic system is intriguing and carefully described, the setting is never fully realized, and Nicodemus's interactions with other teachers and students seem to take place in a world bereft of supporting characters. Charlton's baroque prose perfectly mirrors the central role of language and the byzantine politics surrounding the Convocation and the potential prophecy, and the innovative spell craft will please fantasy readers weary of more traditional magics. (Feb.)

Reviewed on: 12/21/2009
Release date: 03/01/2010
Ebook - 352 pages - 978-1-4299-4521-9
Paperback - 467 pages - 978-0-00-734919-7
Mass Market Paperbound - 462 pages - 978-0-7653-5658-1
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