An alternate cover edition of this ISBN can be found hereTo the forest on the shore of the Kingdom of the Isles, the orphan Pug came to study with the master magician Kulgan His courage won him a place at court and the heart of a lovely Princess, but he was ill at ease with normal wizardry Yet his strange magic may save two worlds from dark beings who opened spacetime to renew the ageold battle between Order and Chaos Via Book Reviews by Niki Hawkes at www.nikihawkes.comWhen customers approach me for a fantasy recommend, I always ask: have you read Feist? As the longtime favorite of my family, Magician: Apprentice is the book that first inspired my love of the genre I've gone through hundreds of books since then, and it is still one of the best novels I've ever read It's got all of the elements I loved about the Lord of the Rings trilogy, but it is written in a muchvibrant and storydriven manner I'm a stickler for good characters, and all of the characters in this series are incredibly welldeveloped and memorable Elves, dwarves, dragons, and magic are all woven together in an adventure that will leave you eager for the next book.This is the first book in the Riftwar Saga, and each book in the series is as good as the last If you would like an introduction to the fantasy genre, this is the novel for you As for the hardcore fantasy fans, this book should definitely be on your list of mustreads.Recommendations: As much as I loved this book, it's hard to believe that I loved a trilogy by Feist and Wurts evenRead the Magician: Apprentice and Magician: Master first, then take some time to read the Daughter of the Empire trilogy before moving on to the third Riftwar book (Silverthorn). Earlier this year I got back into the fantasy genre by reading Patrick Rothfuss' The Name of the Wind Since then I've been reading backwards; finding the authors Rothfuss was favorably compared to and reading their books I was very taken with the author I read next, George R R Martin, and would happily have continued the Song of Fire and Ice series, but apparently the next book in that series has been postponed till 2013 So I chose Raymond Feist who was next on my list To a total fantasy virgin it may hold some appeal, but even the books I read at the peak of my dorkiness, at a time when I read almost nothing except books by R.A Salvatore and others published by Forgotten Realms, are significantly better than this book Simply put Magician: Apprentice lacks the subtlety, beauty, and complexity of the other works of fantasy (or even plain old fiction) I've read this year Overall I'd say it reads like the collected notes of what were probably very engaging DD styled scenarios and RPG adventures The characters are perhaps overloved by the author All are sort of generic nice guys thrown into tough situations They lack flaws, they have no weaknesses, and so they don't broaden as characters They're chivalrous and handsome When they fail (rarely) it's through no fault of their own All personal conflicts are resolved with a good cry, some laughter, and then drinks The most major change in a character is enacted not by learning from experience or harsh reality, or personal introspection, but instead by donning mysterious magical armor None of the characters facethan brief moral or ethical dilemmas Because these men are only faced with deus ex machina type problems their growth is never shown, we're merely told it's happened after random narrative leaps Four months has passed and generic male hero #1 wishes to return home, or 2 years have passed and generic male #2 is now battle hardened Okay, I guess if you say so The females are evenone dimensional All those giventhan one line of dialog are beautiful, playful, strongwilled, and eager to find a partner Even the elven Queen is essentially the same, she just has a title Leaving aside for a moment the other worldly opposition, the only villains are mentioned in passing None are full characters, just useful tools to create minor shifts in the action The opposition from another world are the most interesting, but unfortunately much of the consideration and description of them is repetitious They have different notions of honor, they're fearless, they speak a tonal language, they come from a world without metal, and employ a magic beyond the understanding Midkemians Those basic points are hammered home over and over again Over and over again is one of the main problems of this book So much feels like repetition of the same fight, the same history, and the same description I read the author's preferred text or edition or some such nonsense Having not read the original I can't be sure, but I'm sure that with 2040 pages trimmed while many of my complaints about the characters would be the same, at the very least the plot would move that much faster.I also read Magician: Master, which I won't bother reviewing, but is a slight improvement: I'd probably give it two stars The description and consideration of the Kelewan world, its people, and their customs is farinteresting than anything in the first book, but the writing and characters still feel tired and one dimensional. *** 4 ***A buddy read with the Epic Fantasy aficionados at BBB!I can't believe I waited so long to read this series! Unfortunately, I am weird and used to start on a series only when the last book of said series was published Then I came to the understanding that if I stuck with this trend, there would be way too many good books I might never get to enjoy in my lifetime Too many authors, for one reason or another, take decades to finish up a story So, instead of starting the series as I wanted to in the 80'shm, I am dating myself, I read the first volume in the first week of this new 2017 year “ Nisi se ružno ponela prema meni, Karlina Ja sam se ponašao kao tupan Ne, ti si se samo ponašao kao prijatelj Rolande Rekao si mi istinu, a ne ono što sam želela da čujem.” It is a good thing that I was raised on the Fantasy genre as mother's milk, because there are obvious trends from the time this work was written and weretypical then The biggest such trend is the mostly linear story line, which seems to have gone by the wayside in the storytelling of today We have about 45 POV's and they are not as jarring as the way the contemporary writers tend to employ them I call the Feist way, a classic fairy tail for adults:) And I love it! It feels cozy, comfortable and somehow, despite a certain degree of predictability, feels like an adventure you set on with your best friend and the sky is the limit!I am not very good at justifying why I feel one way or another about something I read Different books affect me in different ways, and thank goodness for that abundance of diversity out there! But I am also not blind to some of the weaknesses in the writing Despite that, I am going to rate this on how it made me feel, and I thoroughly enjoyed and loved it! “Dolgan: ’Tis a wise thing to know what is wanted, and wiser still to know when ‘tis achieved.Rhuagh: True And still wiser to know when it is unachievable, for then striving is folly.” The story is mostly about a young orphan boy who becomes an apprentice to an old magician, and the community where he grows up and finds himself having to defend against invading forces from a place far, far away The world is populated with humans, Elves, Fae folks, Dwarfs, there was a Dragon, and a distant cousin of it, the little Drake, which is no bigger than a dog and loooooves to cuddle:) Oooo “Some love comes like the wind off the sea, while others grow slowly from the seeds of friendship and kindness I would recommend this book and series to everyone who loves the Fantasy genre, those who are interested in getting acquainted with it, and even those who just now start showing interest in reading a story like this is bound to get anyone addicted to the magic of reading!!! I loved this book and I ma looking forward to going into the next one:) What a wonderful journey it promises to be!!! Now I wish you all Happy Reading and may you find joy in every book you read!!! I wanted to like this book I really did First, a major caveat: The Magician: Apprentice is only one part of a twovolume novel The second volume, The Magician: Master, completes the tale Given this, it isn’t really fair to judge the first volume on many points, so keep in mind that my review applies almost exclusively to this first volume.The Magician: Apprentice is a story centered on — you guessed it — a magician’s apprentice named Pug who finds himself an unlikely hero when the world of Midkemia is invaded by the Tsurani from another dimension Unfortunately, the whole thing soundsexciting than it really is First of all, I found myself perpetually annoyed that our hero was named “Pug” It kept conjuring images of a dogfaced boy with bugeyes The name is “cute” in a way that distracted me from believing that he could ever become anythingthan a pubescent putz Further, Pug’s character is thin and cliche Fiest provides plenty of narration, but Pug performs so few characterdefining actions and has so few lines of dialogue that he remains a mystery Rather than being a participant, I often felt as though the story were happening to him.Sadly, Kulgan, the magician to whom Pug is apprenticed, is your stereotypical fantasy magician: he is tempermental, wears long robes and a funny hat, sports a long white beard and puffs away on a pipe That isn’t to say that a fantasy magician shouldn’t appear this way, it’s just that this is all I know of Kulgan He too is flat and boring.I really liked the concept of the apprentice magician It reminds me of Luke Skywalker apprenticing with Obi Wan and Yoda But we never really see Pug do any apprenticing He becomes an apprentice, reads a lot, and that’s pretty much it In fact, we don’t see him doing much other than being conflicted over the Duke’s daughter which, frankly, I thought was lame I picked up a book called The Magician, not An Average Awkward Fourteen Year Old Boy Discovers Girls.We also never get to see a scene like the one in which Skywalker observes the master at work: such as Obi Wan’s Jedi mind tricks — “These aren’t the droids you’re looking for” — or Yoda lifting the XWing from the swamp on Dagobah We never see Kulgan do anything interesting with magic, so we really don’t have any idea what Pug is shooting for.There are also problems with the plot itself First, I have read some of it before in a little tale called The Lord of the Rings You may have heard of it Feist’s world is so Tolkienesque that it gives me heartburn Take, for example, the trek through the mines You know, the mines dug out by the dwarves who dared to delve deeper than was safe? So deep, in fact, that there are unnamed evils lurking there? No, I’m not talking about the mines of Moria, I’m talking about the mines of Mac Mordian Cadal Yeah, even the name is somewhat familiar This is a setting too associated with the The Lord of the Rings to work well anywhere else Moria is a place that truly scared me, but the mines of Mac Mordian Cadal make me feel like an adult walking through a Disneyland version of Moria To be fair, the first three quarters of The Magician: Apprentice are almost an unnecessary part of the story These chapters serve to introduce a variety of characters and place them in position for the inevitable Tsurani invasion After the invasion, however, the story finally loses its Tolkiensque flavor and begins to take on a life of its own.Feist fails to consistently pace his story: we jump from “We have been invaded!” to “The war has been going on now for a year and now we’re tired.” You’re telling me that all the excitement surrounding an invasion from another dimension is going to be frittered away like Adam Sandler’s life was fastforwarded in Click? WTF? I want to be where the fighting is, not in some drawing room talking about strategy a whole year after the war has started.Feist also has trouble with perspective At first, we think we’re in third person limited, but Feist frequently hops into third person omniscient Onthan one occasion he switches perspective midscene with no line breaks or visual cues This drives me up the wall There is nothingannoying than being in Pug’s head one moment and then hopping over to Kulgan and then back to Pug It is enough to make a reader go crosseyed Further, when we’re supposed to be in Pug’s perspective, Feist insists on telling us things that he can’t possibly know The narrator’s voice creeps into the story and I find myself wanting to slam the door in his face and tell him to get the hell out.Overall, I found myself trudging through this book Although I think the concept of the rift is genius, Feist failed to bring it to fruition I can’t help but think that Feist’s editor should have rapped him on the knuckles with this manuscript It never should have left the editor’s desk looking like this Once I hit a point when I realized that the story had jumped two years ahead in time, I nearly gave up Massive temporal shifts like that are tough to pull off, but they are made evendifficult when the reader doesn’t give a damn about the characters.Having started reading the second volume, I can say that much is improved Feist has finally managed to bring Pug into focus and — despite its flaws — I am honestly looking forward to continuing the story. Reread.I devoured this book and the next four back in the late eighties and SERIOUSLY desiredand yet, I never did get around to picking up all the subsequent books until now.Of course, I needed to reread an old love and see if it stands up to the test of time, and you know what I found?Fantastical fantasy goodness! I love it! And you know what's better? The author did a bangup job of reediting this authorpreferred text An extra 50k words, side plots, characters, androunding of the world The old story was not touched, just enhanced What can I say?I like this novel better this time :)Great elements remain, and now through my YAjaded eyes, what could have been a cringeworthy love triangle was nothing of the sort Becoming an apprentice, solidifying lifelong friendships, going on an adventure full of pathos and seeming tragedy ends with lots of valor, gorgeous descriptions, and a vast, sweeping war Alien invaders in the literal sense, if not in an SF sense Alternate world, rifts, magics, slavery, and SO MUCH VALOR! :)I'm SO glad I'm revisiting this I fully plan to read all the way through this next year :) Yay! What a treat! Started out well I liked the main character, it seemed like it might be interesting Then they walked into the mines of Moria, visited Galadriel in Lothlorien, (but he renamed them all, cuz he's smart like that) and the main character disappeared halfway through the narrative.The characters were flat as cardboard, particularly the females, and he spent most of his time telling rather than showing Eventually the main character shows up, in the second half of this book which was published as Magician:Master By that time, he's utterly useless except as a plot device, boring, self important, and overall I wished he had stayed kidnapped.Basically, it was a load of derivative and nighunmitigated crap and I can't believe I actually read the sequel to this What was I thinking? Magician: Apprentice is an appealing introduction into an epic fantasy series that a newbie can enjoy It offers a young hero who is just at the beginning of his journey to find his purpose in life Feist offers a fantasy world on the brink of war from a threat that has the capacity to bring great change to Midkemia as they know it While the world has a typical medievaltype feel, the variety of races presented give the world an incredible texture I loved the descriptions of the elves and their way of life, how they are similar and different from the Dark Brotherhood, Elves who have fallen into a darker way of life I have to say that the dwarves really caught my attention Their beliefs, values and their skill at fighting and navigating the mines of the Stone Mountains Of course, loved the dragon!I wasn't sure about the Tsurani storyline initially, but it takes this story in a different direction from what I initially expected It sets up an incredible culture clash that takes this novel to a wider focus as the Midkemians have to work together to stave off the invasion of forces from another world.Initially, it seems that Pug, our young magician apprentice, is the center of this story But it becomes clear that various characters gain the focus of Feist Starting out like a coming of age story, and I suppose it continues to be one in some way, this story becomes one about people dealing with their world being invaded by a formidable group of people whose values are completely alien to their own, and who seem invincible.One detractor I'd have for this story is that it's not a standalone The story doesn't end on an obvious cliffhanger, but you definitely have to keep reading to find out what happens to all the pivotal characters With a massively overflowing to read list, I am not eager for too many series to add, but the strength of the story and the good writing here, guarantees I will be back for .Fantasy Beginner Rating (explanation: Scale is based on whether this is a good book for beginner fantasy readers or it is better for one who has read a lot of fantasy HighGood starter book MediumOkay for a beginner LowMay be confusing for a novice fantasyreader.): High. Buddy read with some wonderful peeps over at BBBI really enjoyed this book! I love the main character, Pug I loved his friendship with his best friend Tomas Pug got picked to be the magician Kulgan's apprentice while Tomas was to be trained as a soldier But they found plenty of time to spend together and get into this, that and the other One day there was a wrecked ship and it turns out they were people from another time A rift in the world and Pug and the people called them aliens I mean they were in a sense, right? But I'm getting ahead of myself One day Pug is asked to take the princess, Carline, out for a ride in the forest With all of the guards you think they would have found someone to take her, but I digress While they were settling down for a picnic they get attacked by trolls Pug (whose magic wasn't working at all) worked some special magic and took care of them Since then he was accepted into the Duke's court So, now he's not the orphan boy of the place He's a part of the court and a magician's apprentice He also has a crush on the princess A lot of peeps do Also, Pug's magic just comes on like that, never when he wants, at least not yet! That would suck, in a sense Andhe was getting somewhere without even knowing it until the day they all set out to talk to some other princes and dukes etc about these aliens They also had a visit from the Elf Queen and they all sided together to find out what's going on The duke let Tomas come along because of Pug They were have a fine time of it until they are attacked and people and animals start keeling over left and right They end up meeting up with some of the dwarves OMG, I loved the Chieftan Dolgan He's a really nice dwarf, but still fierce Oh, you know what I mean! Anyway, they have to go through these tunnels underground to get to the other side I couldn't help it Anyway, they are attacked by something not saying, and they get separated from Tomas Dolgan tells everyone to go on when they got out and he would go back in and find him I know it's weird to say but this was the best part of the book to me because Dolgan finds Tomas with a dragon And it was really good and I cried! YES, I CRIED! DON'T JUDGE ME Anyhoo, the dragon gave them some gifts and things happened Now that part was pretty short but it was just awesome to me Tomas ends up having to stay with Dolgan I'm not sure what will happen or how they are going to get back together with the group That will be in the other books of course There are a lot of other things that happened More get separated, some attacks happen, but we don't really find out a whole lot I think the author is setting us up for some pretty cool things Or not, they could all just die in the next book and we move on The book made me think of my childhood Certain high fantasy books do that and I don't know why Maybe it's just the older ones At any rate I enjoyed this one a lot even though I don't know what all is going to happen I think it was set up nicely for the next book The only thing is I wish Kulgan used his magicI was thinking he was going to be zapping things left and right He might not be all that great of a wizard in that sense, he seemed like it from time to time, but what do I know Oh yeah, I want to knowabout the really strong magician We will be seeingof him I'm sure and he had a tie to the dragon but I'm not telling you what it was just that it was nice and part of what made me cry MY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List I first read this book shortly after it came out in the early 80's while in my 20's It's every bit as enjoyable on the 4th read almost 30 years later In many ways, it is a very typical fantasy, but the character's pop very well the world has enough new elements to make it quite intriguing The quick pace hides a complexity that becomes apparent as the story progresses we're led deeper into the world Since I have a towering TBR pile, I reread sparingly I'm so happy I did this again.On to Magician: Master In the HB UK editions, these are published as one volume I prefer PB's am glad the two were split Unlike the Jordan bricks, these PB's have withstood the test of time due to their reasonable size.