Summary: In a city that runs on a dwindling supply of magic, a young boy is drawn into a life of wizardry and adventure. Conn should have dropped dead the day he picked Nevery's pocket and touched the wizard's locus magicalicus, a stone used to focus magic and work spells. But for some reason he did not. Nevery finds that interesting, and he takes Conn as his apprentice on the provision that the boy find a locus stone of his own. But Conn has little time to search for his stone between wizard lessons and helping Nevery discover who or what is stealing the city of Wellmet's magic. (Summary and image taken from goodreads.com)
My Review: My friend recommended this as an audio book for my oldest – and, trying to redeem myself, I decided to read it first to see if it were appropriate.
I LOVED it!!
Sarah Prineas has created a world where the cities themselves need magic to survive, where wizards us a locus stone instead of a wand – but just as personal, and where the magic is inexplicably fading. Her characters are surprisingly fleshed out, and while they all have their faults, they are made more loveable for it.
Conn has lived a difficult life on the streets of the Twilight (the dicey part of Wellmet), picking pockets to survive. He’s an exceptionally talented—albeit uneducated—thief who has survived somehow without illness his entire life, and who relies on quick thinking and lies to do so. As his backstory unfolds, I couldn’t help but open my heart to this dirty-faced, bright young thief who is so determined to learn magic. His tutors, master, and the henchman who is assigned to look after him all also find a way to endear themselves to the reader.
I loved watching these characters grow and evolve. I loved the world that Prineas has created, and if I hadn’t read this book on a road trip, I’d have been at the library picking up the rest of the series! As it were, I handed the book to my oldest and demanded that he stop reading whatever it was that he was reading at the time and read this instead. (I don’t know if he obeyed me!)
My Rating: Four and a half stars, easily.
For the Sensitive Reader: There are a couple of cases of thug violence against Conn and his friends, and the end is a little intense, but it’s tame enough that I feel comfortable having my son read it.