Sunday, October 19, 2014

The Magic Thief: A Proper Wizard (Magic Thief #3.5) by Sarah Prineas

I kind of like these little short books in between novels. It makes me want to pick up book 4 and it is a good review for my remiss brain that remembers details about as well as I cook. At least I don't blow things up cooking like Conn does with his experiments. Not only is Conn back, which I didn't expect since the trilogy wrapped up nicely, but he's still blowing things up. Yeehaw! The absent-minded risk-taker is hard-working and more observant than it would appear. He fools many by his appearance and when Verent, apprentice to a wizard that is seeking Conn's help on a magical problem, meets Conn he is ready to turn around and head home. Verent's elitist attitude is a turn off as the snobbish Verent wants nothing to do with the poorly dressed Conn and his low-class accent. But Conn isn't offended and he includes Verent in his experiments teaching him how to turn a mistake into a positive experience.

Verent doesn't know what to think of Conn and makes comparisons to the current wizard he's apprenticed to in the city of Danivelle. This is a nice study of character development as the author shows how to birth a one-dimensional character into a complex, three-dimensional one (sounds like an alien). Verent's views hide his insecurities about his lack of skills as a wizard. He is never praised nor encouraged in a steady progression of mastering wizardry skills. Instead he is shamed and browbeaten by his master creating a person that puts others down so that he can feel good about himself. Conn teaches him that he has worthwhile skills and must allow himself to make mistakes and take risks. Otherwise he will never reach his potential as a wizard. Prineas does a great job showing this through dialogue and action. Plus I got a refresher on Conn and Nevery's background. I forgot quite a bit because book 3 was published in 2010. My brain is befuddled with too many other books to remember that long ago. If you want a quick read (49 pages), a refresher on the series, and a little depth regarding mistakes and risk-taking then give this a go.

4 Smileys

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