Author: Tamora Pierce
The Immortals, vol. 1
Ever since she was little, Daine has had a talent for dealing with all sorts of animals–some might even say a gift, although she’s surely not magically Gifted in the normal sense at all. When she is forced to leave her home, she finds her knack for animals to be quite useful, landing her a job helping the trader Onua transport a string of ponies to the Queen’s Riders in Tortall. Only, their trip goes anything but smoothly as they encounter half-human, half-bird monsters–monsters that were supposed to have been locked away in the Divine Realms 400 years ago. They do reach their destination safely, however, and Daine settles into the routines of caring for the ponies, helping train new recruits, and studying animals and her own connection to them with her new tutor, the master magician Numair. But trouble is looming on the horizon, both for Tortall and for Daine, and it’s only a matter of time until the storms break.
I might have mentioned this before, but I absolutely love Tamora Pierce’s books, and Wild Magic is no exception. The story itself is intricate, well-paced, exciting, and fun–I think I finished it within 12 hours of starting, even with a full night’s sleep fit in the middle. I love that Pierce set this in Tortall and brings in numerous characters from her “Song of the Lioness” quartet (see vol. 1, 2, 3, & 4)–it’s a treat to see George, Alanna, Thayet, and the others again! The new characters introduced in this book are wonderful as well. (I have a feeling Numair is going to be a particularly interesting wild card for this quartet.) I think the blend of fantasy, internal struggle, political intrigue, action, and just plain fun is balanced nicely; the story moves and is very enjoyable. Plus, I love all the animals, especially the ones like Cloud (Daine’s horse) who are full of attitude! I think Wild Magic is a great option for anyone who likes a solid fantasy novel, especially for those who like Pierce’s other books.