Reviewed by First Mate Keira
Title: The Lost Gate (Mither Mages, Book 1)
Author: Orson Scott Card
Page Count: 350 pages
Grade Reading Level: Ages 15+
Summary: Danny North was part of legend. Or at least his family was. As for Danny? Yeah, not so much. Danny as the son of two very powerful magical parents should be extrodinary. Only he isn’t. He’s talentless at anything magical, but anything normal and he’s great – school, languages, all that he knows and picks up on quickly, but he’d trade it all in for a chance to be special. And yet, while he doesn’t know it, Danny North is special. Very special. With a magical talent that could get him killed. To live he must go into exile. To survive he must master the forbidden magic that he possesses.
Why I started this book:
I really enjoyed Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game (though I couldn’t get into Bean’s sequel story because it was too gory for me) and I thought upon reading the summary that this would be perfect for me because I’m more inclined to reading fantasy than science fiction.
- I like how magical power as it waned over the centuries began to be despised by those that craved more of it. Every magical family line wanted to host the next Gatemage who could open a Gate (with power boosting attributes) to the distant planet they all once hailed from… and yet it was forbidden to host a Gatemage and all should be (and were if known) killed on sight… because every family feared another family would get the Gatemage first.
- I like the strong mechanics of the science behind the magic. It has rules. It follows logic, if you understand it. It makes sense on paper. It makes sense in the story. I like how minor Gate magicians begin popping up and learning their powers all because Danny is a Gagemage and they can finally access their own powers because of the presence of his Gates.
- I like how Danny defeats the main threat of this novel. It was clever, well thought out, and heavily foreshadowed if one paid attention. I particularly enjoyed the fact that the big threat hadn’t a clue because said threat didn’t get an outside view of how a similar incident played out, even though the threat was a part of those very same incidents.
- There’s a lot of unnecessary side characters, particularly the horny married (prostitute? Ex-prostitute?) woman who sexual assualts (but not to the conclusion of the act) Danny in the course of the novel. I mean, what gives? Seriously. Totally irrelevant.
- Also I felt that Danny lacked a strong moral code. He breaks into places with his magic, because he can, because it’s undetectable. He hurts people who threatened (I can’t help but think this to be very un-Harry Potter-like if you get my drift.)
Last Minute Thoughts: I am definitely going to read the next book. I hope it is as good as this one was.
Rating: 4 Treasure Chests
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