So I have still not been in a super blogging mood of late. I’ve been busy teaching myself to play bass guitar (with the help of Rocksmith on the PS4, brilliant) and making adorable notebooks to sell in my Etsy store. (Guys – people have actually purchased some of my notebooks! Such a thrill!) Blogging blehs usually go along with somewhat of a reading bleh – I never stop reading, but sometimes I go through periods where I only read fluff, evidenced this time around that I reread the entirety of Nora Roberts’s Bridal Quartet in five days. Whoops.
However, I have every intention of catching up on a backlog of reviews soon, and today I was inspired to sit down and actually finish this review which I started two or so weeks ago(!), so that, if nothing else, you all would know that I am still alive… and reading!
As soon as I heard the premise of The Magician’s Workshop, I was intrigued. A world comprised of islands that are peopled by individuals who all possess, at some level, magic? How fun is that? The answer is that it is quite fun, actually.
There is a lot going on in these books, so I am not really going to try and summarize them a great deal. Suffice to say that the story focuses on several young people from all over O’Ceea. In O’Ceea, there is a big event at a certain age where young people go through a ceremony that evaluates their level of magic, which in turn helps determine what they do with the rest of their lives. Our story begins with several of these teenagers approaching the ceremony.
The story jumps all over O’Ceea, and many of the characters don’t know each other (yet). Volume I, especially, is definitely focused on setting the stage, and I felt that it somewhat lacked in action because of that. There were a lot of characters to meet and a lot of information to assimilate, but once I got into the groove of the story, I found myself enjoying it. However, the broad cast of characters did mean that sometimes I found myself trying to remember where I last saw this character – I think a lot of that had to do with the fact that I was reading this on my Kindle. If I had a physical book, it would have been much easier to flip back to where I last saw this character and then transition into what that character was doing now. My Kindle isn’t as page-flipping friendly.
The second volume had a lot more action and not as many new characters to meet, so I was more engaged in the story. The big ceremony occurred, with lots of drama centered around that, and I was really excited to see what directions the characters were heading – and how their storylines might start to collide.
These are definitely stories that are teaching a lesson. That aspect could probably be a little more subtle, but on the whole it doesn’t distract from the actual story too much, although I did find myself thinking about Dr. Seuss’s sneeches pretty regularly.
I yearn for a map of O’Ceea. I LOVE maps, and being able to better understand the geography of this world would be fabulous.
All in all, 3/5 for Volume I and 4/5 for Volume II. The authors aren’t sure if they are going to continue with the series, but I most certainly hope that they do as I am quite curious to see how things play out.
NB: Volume I was given to me by the authors, which obviously does not impact my review.