Zen Cho ☆ 9 download
Sover I didn t feel connected to any of the characters The ones that were likable were so high falutin with their words that I couldn t stand them The feminism felt like a joke a character flips her personality like a switch and conveniently the plot gains several feet of progressionAnd the whole world was so frustratingly obstinate that I celebrated as soon as the book was overYouTube Blog Instagram Twitter Snapchat mirandareads Happy Reading Copy provided by NetGalleyThere have been a plethora of fantasy romances in the Regency of late not surprising considering there s a good chance that a lot of these authors grew p reading Georgette Heyer and possibly Jane Austen Except for Susanna Clarke I don t find Austen s sharp characterization wit or style of satire in any of them however there s a strong feel of Heyer s mix of modernity and her idiosyncratic version of Regency era language in most and I think that the homage to Heyer is part of the strong appeal as they are entertaining and accessible to readers not steeped in period literatureIn Zen Cho s Sorcerer to the Crown there is a great deal of Heyer s idiom but without her tendency toward Disappearing Nightly (Esther Diamond, unexamined prejudice and thenderlying assumption that Birth Will Always Tell What Cho gives s instead is a black Sorcerer Royal who despite his intelligence and scrupulous honesty is constantly dealing with insults assassination attempts and other forms of bigotry by supposedly wel Delightful books are delightfulI am completely tterly enamoured with Sorcerer to the Crown Zen Cho s first novel A wonderful and charming book that pays homage to Regency romances and Fantasy novels at the same time that interrogates some of the problematic aspects of those genres in regards to race and gender It s like this book was written for meZacharias Whyte is a freed slave and a talented magician who just so happens to have recently become Sorcerer Royal of the Unnatural Philosophers of Britain His fellow magicians are not exactly happy about it because Zacharias is not only a black man and not exactly a gentleman but also the events surrounding his mastery of the Sorcerer Royal s Staff that only answers to the One True SR are shrouded in mystery WHAT exactly happened that night everybody wonders And so the magicians and sorcerers whisper and gossip and plot behind Zacharias back because that is the polite thing to do as we know Microagressions are always the way to go too And Zacharias knows everything about thoseWithin the story there is a truth Platinum Cowboy universally acknowledged thatEngland s scarcity of magic was a matter of common knowledge among the magicalWhat with the magic no longer freely flowing from fairyland and the number of familiars declining to the point where no magician has even seen a familiar in ages The familiars are magical creatures from fairyland that devote their lives to the service of a magician at a Great Cost who is then considered a sorcerer This is the Right and Proper way of doing things of courseBut ANYWAYS the lack of magic is terrible and the magicians have been anguishing over that and trying to hide it from the Government because magic and the statuso are directly connected and even though the Sorcerer Royal should be independent from politics this is really Zacharias being completely na ve and a fool for believing that POWER is as The Proverbial Harry S. Truman uncomplicated as thatAnd here is the funny thing about this so called scarcity of magic because if you move your eyes away from London and the Unnatural Philosophers and the gentlemen and look at other places like the school for gentlewitches where inconveniently magical daughters are sent to learn restraint because women s bodies and little brains simply can t cope with magic as everybody knows you will see magic abounds really But inappropriate magic doesn t count Shameless impudent meddling females who presumed to set at naught the Society s prohibition on women s magic and duped the common people with their potions and cantrips HAHAHA This book it is awesome Because that s the setup and we know that something awesome is going to happen to disprove that Like have a myriad of different women from all over the world doing amazing things from heroism to villainy the women are the ones to move the plot along and to sort out all the problemsZacharias Whyte SORCERER ROYAL secondary characterAND THENEnter Prunella Gentleman WOMANAn orphaned mixed race half Indian WOMANWho has magic in her little finger than many gentlemen in their entire bodies Who knows how to wield such magics in ways that are preposterously dangerous completely outrageous and incredibly coolPrunella who has something like a thousand familiars OK I exaggerate but this is an important point because of the ways that it s all connected to history power and familyPrunella Gentleman who has the guts and fortitude to do anything to get what she wants And those who dare stand in the way and tell her she can t because of her genderPrunella is all like I shall do what I please SIR saves EnglandPrunella had once thought life in London would be all flirting and balls and dresses hitting attentive suitors on the shoulder with a fan and breakfasting latepon bowls of chocolate She sighed now for her na vet Little had she known life in London was in fact all hexes and murder and thaumaturgical politics and she would always be rising early for some reason or otherPrunella incorrigible busybody Who meets Zacharias and then nothing will ever be the same again And I just love the dynamics between Zacharias and Prunella and even though the romance is an obvious but super welcomed development the subtlety of it is delicious especially in how Zacharias is anything but ambitious while Prunella could easily run the niverse An example of an interaction between themYour amoral ingenuity in the pursuit of your interest is perfectly shocking said Zacharias severely Yes isn t it said Prunella pleased Said Prunella pleased Prunella Gentleman you are my patronusWhen talking about the book and its inspirations and influences Zen Cho most commonly mentions Susannah Clarke and Georgette Heyer s regencies but there is one work that I thought about the most when reading Sorcerer to the Crown In many ways I think this book is in direct conversation with another sensational read from earlier this year Uprooted by Naomi Novik especially with the way that both novels examine the relationship between power and class between power and the social strata which inevitably places women in a subordinate position within the status o Both books Retrain Your Anxious Brain uestion and subvert this really well and look at the ways that women create and wield magic Both books converse with feminism and with topical issues within SFF and they are both incredibly light delightful charming and friendly in ways that we don tsually see in mainstream FantasyThis has been an incredible year for reading so far Sorcerer to the Crown is another favourite and a strong top 10 contender Your amoral ingenuity in the pursuit of your interest is perfectly shocking said Zacharias severelyYes isn t it said Prunella pleasedWelcome back friends I finished Sorcerer to the Crown written by Zen Cho and published in 2015 A historical fantasy novel it won the Best Newcomer award at the 2016 British Fantasy AwardsSo What s It AboutZacharias Wythe is Sorcerer Royal of the Unnatural Philosophers an esteemed position that he has a tenuous hold on because of the racist pushback he faces from the rest of the society On top of this the stores of magic in England are drying p and no one knows why While dealing with all of this Zacharias happens to cross paths with Prunella Gentleman a devious young woman with extreme magical power They are soon entangled in a mess of intrigue and danger that will change the course of magic in England foreverWhat I ThoughtSorcerer to the Crown is a remarkable debut novel emulating the style of a Regency era novel with great success I have read a few other books in this style most significantly Jonathan Strange Mr Norrell and Sorcery and Celia or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot While Jonathan Strange Mr Norrell fully immerses itself in historical minutiae and archaic details and Sorcery and Celia or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot puts the most emphasis on Austenian style romance Sorcerer to the Crown finds something of a middle ground There is a touch of romance but it is mostly interested in exploring the prejudices and power dynamics of the Regency era through the metaphor of magic It manages to balance its astute social commentary with charming wit and grace a feat that would make Austen proud Add to this two complex and compelling lead characters in Prunella and Zacharias and you ve got a winner for sureThe F WordSorcerer to the Crown features an excellent treatment of magic in a historical setting because it argues that magic would be no different from any other form of power in its misuse corruption and propagation of entrenched prejudices In this book we see how the sorcerers of England attempt to se magic as a tool of colonialism racism and sexism The matter of racism is explored through both Zacharias s and Prunella s stories as Zacharias was born a slave and Prunella is half IndianZacharias s life is dictated by the ways other delegitimize him because of his skin color he is constantly doubted disrespected and ltimately threatened and endangered because he is a man of color in power I think his story goes a long way towards demonstrating the futility of respectability politics no matter how many times he proves himself to be competent alified and the perfect gentleman he is still treated with contempt and disrespect by many of the other sorcerers As he says to Prunella It is not within my power to make you respectable I cannot even do that for myselfNo matter how perfectly he behaves he will never be perfect enough to make Kincaid Bride (Montana Mavericks: Wed in Whitehorn Series up for the transgression of being black There is also the matter of his secret anger and resentment towards his benefactor Sir Stephen who purchased him when he was a child Did not Sir Stephen purchase your parents as wellNo said Zacharias Presumably he did not discern the same potential in themThe statement broughtp the old anger and confusion followed by the accustomed guilt that he should be so The Seventh Night ungrateful as to resent the man who had rescued him from bondage And yet he did resent Sir Stephen even nowThe relationship with Sir Stephen is a complicated one to say the least There are true regard and love between the two of them but Zacharias has spent a long time forbidding himself to acknowledge the validity of his confusion anger and resentment These feelings of conflict arise not only in his individual relationship with Sir Stephen but also in his role as the Sorcerer Royal dedicated to serving the goals of a country that has very much been an enemy to Zacharias and countless other people of color around the world You are calledpon to advance the good of this nation and none other Your allegiance is no to magic alone nor to all humanity but to your own portion of humanity to the country that nurtured you And enslaved my parents said ZachariasWhat I especially appreciated about Cho s depiction of historical racism is that it s also intersectional Prunella and Zacharias experience the world in very different ways as men and women of color and Prunella is very pragmatic about the fact that her primary goal is to find a rich husband because there are certain opportunities that will simply not be afforded to her Knightleys Tale until she is seen as a legitimate figure within London s social circles and there are a very limited number of ways that she can make herself respectable as a poor youngnmarried woman of color Her goal is to knock off the poor and The Magnificent M.D. unmarried descriptors and hope that that takes her far enough In addition Zacharias starts out the story not thinking twice about the way that women are barred from doing magic and he mustnlearn his ignorance as he gets to know Prunella His own personal experiences as an outsider because of his race give him empathy for her experiences as an outsider because of bother her gender and her raceThere s one Mail-Order Mistletoe Brides uote in particular that I really loved from his process ofnlearning his sexism Surely feminine magic must be curbed magic being so peculiarly detrimental to women s delicate frames Besides magic was too hard to come by in these days for it to be frittered away in women s frivolities ballgowns and christening gowns and gowns of other descriptionsYet the moment this thought passed through Zacharias s mind his conscience presented the image of Lady Wythe as a counterpoint Anyone less likely to waste magic in fripperies was impossible to imagine nless it were the cooks maids charwomen herbwives and other females of the lower classes who were permitted to practise their craft in peace because they employed it for the benefit of th. Ings him in contact with a most nusual comrade a woman with immense power and an nfathomable gift he sets on a path which will alter the nature of sorcery in all of Britain and the world at large.
Not at all what I expected And it was greatFrom the cover art the title and the length of the book I was expecting a weighty Asia tinged fantasy epic NopeIt may be long but I zipped through it in a day And it s hilariousAs the comments below indicate yes comparisons with Susanna Clarke s Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell are navoidable The settings are very similar an old timey London inhabited by a society of stuffy and aristocratic magicians There are also incursions of Fairyland and in addition both prominently feature a former slave who dramatically rises in society However this is a much less serious work Although not The Best Man in Texas unsophisticated it s less fussy and much romantic I d say imagine if Susanna Clarke s writing met Gail Carriger s I have to say though I enjoyed this better than either it hit my sweet spotOur two main charactersPrunella is an orphaned assistant at a girls school Abandoned by her British father her Indian mother known only by the tint she imparted to her daughter s skin she is dependent on the headmistress for her living She has a deal of magical talentnfortunately in this England girls are not considered to have a constitution suitable for the The Prodigal Comes Home (Mirror Lake, use of magic and schools such as this one for gentlewitches are devoted solely to preventing the young women fromsing their skills Of course people tend to look the other way when servants Beast Of Darkness (Knights of White use magic to accomplish their menial tasksZacharias is the titular Sorcerer to the Crown Unfortunately his occupation of the post of head sorcerer in Britain is a matter of some controversy A black man and a former slave he is notite the aristocrat his fellow magicians want as their leader Plots to depose him are already being fomentedAlthough Zacharias position is already Hawks Way Grooms (Hawks Way unstable politics and disasters wait for no one The magic of England seems to be draining away and no one is sure why In addition a Sultan and a foreign witch from Janda Baik a small Malaysian island are at each others throats and both threaten to drag England into a conflict overseasBut when the Sorcerer is imposedpon to give a speech at a girls school he meets Prunella and from there events proceed in a merrily headlong roller coaster type fashionThoroughly delightfulMany thanks to Ace and Net Galley for the opportunity to read this excellent book As always my opinions are solely my own I picked A Biblical Approach to Developing the Inner Qualities of a Leader up Sorcerer to the Crown because I heard it was strikingly reminiscent of one of my favourite fantasy books the wonderful Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Suasana Clarke Such a thing is this book s greatest asset and also its downfall Perhaps my rating of this would have been slightly higher had I read first Though when reading all I saw was how the book had drawn from a much better book Cho s setting and world building are adeuate but again I was imagining them in relation to Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell Both books deal with English magic during the time of the Napoleonic wars and the regency period Magic is seen as improper in the stuffy society of the early nineteenth century it is frownedpon and drastically misunderstood Is it too similarIn Clarke s novel Stephen is the black house servant of Sir Walter Pole He has descended from slaves and though not part of the system he is very much a second class citizen Zacharias Wythe from Cho s novel is a black sorcerer in a society that deems him inferior I feel like Cho has essentially read Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell and asked herself a estion what would happen if Stephen was also a magician And this is the book that answers the situation An African sorcerer is at the head of the English magic society in an all too familiar worldCho attempts to write in dated prose she attempts to infuse modern prose with that of Austen Clarke did the same with an absolute brilliant level of execution She even produced a typical three volume novel to add to this effect Cho s attempt is sloppy with distinctively modern words and phrasing being set against older expressions The result is neven writing that dances between being accessible to younger readers and being a pastiche All in all it just was not written with the same level of skill and attention to detail that Clarke displayed Clarke is just SO much better Sorcerer to the Crown certainly isn t a terrible book but for me it will always exist in the shadow of a much greater book one that I wanted to stop reading this one for The parallels are far too strong Perhaps all this is merely coincidental and the writers just had similar ideas for the setting of a novel though even so Clarke handles her book with skill Her characters are charming and very complex individuals I love the way she based her two magicians on Wordsworth and Coleridge with magic replacing the arguments they had over poetry If you have read Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell then you will possibly hate this for its bland attempt at similar ideas However if you have not read it you may find some enjoyment here Rating 3 stars ranting than reviewIt started promising with little Zacharias Wythe showing the Royal Society of Unnatural Philosophers that he is a worthy apprentice to Sir Stephen Wythe despite the color of his skin Years have passed and following the death of Sir Stephen Zacharias takes his place of Sorcerer Royal something that because of his origins doesn t sit well with the majority of the thaumaturges magicianssorcerers Zacharias was born a slave Sir Stephen saw something special in the little boy He had liberated him separating his fate from that of his birth parents given him his name and the position in society that goes with it no matter the society liked it or not and honed him to become a powerful sorcererPrunella Gentleman on the other hand was raised by Mrs Daubeney and hes spent her youth helping her manage the School for Gentlewitches She never new her mother who due to Prunella s complexion must have been of darker skin and her father Mr Hilary Gentleman had left her alone in the world when she was but a little child presumably drowning himself Mrs Daubney Gentleman s lodger didn t know what to do with the little girl that had even then begun to show troubling signs of being magical Because Ladies cannot be magical They are too fragile and empty headed to handle magical powers It is not something befitting a young lady It is alright for some village woman to be a witch and sell some potions and herbs But real magic is for men precisely gentlemen and with the right colour of skin Learning how to handle a girl afflicted by magic Mrs Daubney changes her fortunes opening a school for young ladies suffering the same magical problems as Prunella s Being a school for gentlewitches it did not of course instruct its students in practical thaumaturgy Mrs Daubeney knew just what parents desired her to inculcate in their inconveniently magical daughters pretty manners a moderate measure of education and above all a habit of restraint This book had all the elements it needed to make me fall in love with the story and then Taming the Demon (Demon Blade unfortunately it didn t It had the interesting racial element that wasnderplayed It had the possibility to shake the ground with the politics or war The story Sinfully Sweet (Harlequin Blaze unfolds on Britain during the Napoleonic wars It had all the makes of great conflicts Britain with France The thaumaturges versus the British government The thaumaturges versus the Fairy Court even that was almostnused And there was a botched attempt of romance don t look at me like that I don t count that as romance zero chemistryBy some blurbs and reviews this was described as a mix of Georgette Heyer s regency novels and Susanna Clarke s Jonathan Strange Mr Norrell I didn t read any of Heyer s books though I think I know what regency books are like Maybe there s something in that claim For the comparisons with Jonathan Strange Mr Norrell phleeese no way I mean I get the similarities but for someone to say if I love Heyer and Strange I would love this book I did like parts of this book but I loved all those 1000 pages of Strange footnotes and all there s no way comparing these twoIn the end I think my problem was that Prunella has turned out to be after a few promising chapters too hungry for power and position for my taste Prunella had no interest in magical lore than a fish has in the philosophical properties of water Ok she doesn t have any interest in magic even if she is gifted with power than many men I can get that But she wishes to be powerful through a high profile marriage She wants to wed someone wealthy not just moderate wealthy excessively in love with her and who would let me do whatever she wished Greedy much I get girl power I love a kick ass heroine that knows what she wants in lifebut Prunella was too much for me She reminded me of Alison Goodman s Eona she was pretty hard to digest in book two Eona The Last Dragoneye but somehow I could get why she acted so power hungry but with Prunella not so much So I ended grumbling to myself till the end of the book And the ending was that supposed to make me swoonMaybe it s me again Usually if something rubs me hard the wrong way I can t enjoy the rest of the book And oh don t make me start on that poor familiar what was that Surely they could have found another solution to LeofricIn the end Prunella annoyed me Zacharias bored me and maybe I ended enjoying smaller players like Damerell Hsiang Han and Mak GenggangNot bad not great an OK book Reviewed by Rabid ReadsI tried to read SORCERER TO THE CROWN by Zen Cho THREE separate times and had pretty much given it Tabitha in the Moonlight up for lost when I decided to give it one chanceMany many thanks to friend and fellow 4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum many comparisons have already been made to describe Sorcerer to the Crown and I m going to chime in too with This feels like epic fantasy for fans of Gail Carriger Zen Cho has created a world here that s reminiscent of Austen meets Tolkien yet at the same time it s so wonderfully adaptable that pigeonholing this book into any one category makes it feel a bit remissA Regency setting is what you will get though even if the nature of the style and story isp for debate Fantasy of manners is also a subgenre that freuently crops p in discussions of novels like this with a focus on a rigid set of expectations within a hierarchical societal structure One of the protagonists in Sorcerer to the Crown is Zacharias Wythe the first black sorcerer in Britain who also holds the highest office in his profession a fact that makes him the target of much opposition and bigotry from many of his so called socially refined peers who feel that a freed slave should not have risen so far above his stationInstitutional racism and oppression is a real menace in this story even overshadowing the threats of war from France the dwindling magical resources of England and the political entanglements involving the matter of witches and belligerent visiting diplomats In spite of all that s going on Zacharias greatest enemies end p being his own neighbors and fellows Already plagued with A Time to Heal ugly rumors surrounding the death of his predecessor and adoptive guardian now it seems someone has decided to go even further by attempting to murder Zacharias Just when he thinks life couldn t get complicated enough along also comes Prunella Gentleman a mixed race young woman of considerable thaumaturgical power and Zacharias takes itpon himself to mentor her in a society where women The Far Far Better Thing using magic is considered anathemaThe fleeting mention of Prunella in the book s blurb actually belies the huge role that she plays While I adored Zacharias to me it was Prunella who stole the show as the star of the novel with the sheer force of her personality In every proper situation she somehow still manages to find a way to throw expectations back into the scandalized faces of those who naively thought they couldse tradition to keep her in line It was also very entertaining to see how often she bends etiuette to her advantage wielding it as a weapon rather than letting it restrict her as evidenced by a particularly hilarious scene where she proposes the Valentines Cowboy use of gossip and rumor as a way to actually deflect potential damage to her reputation I loved her for her frankness and her thoroughlynbreakable spirit and because she is strong ruthless and determined in other words the opposite of everything the small minded folks in this book say about women magiciansI was also surprised at how light hearted this novel was some of its weightier themes notwithstanding I definitely don t claim to be an expert in Regency fiction or books of this type but it s my The Truth About Jane Doe understanding that a particular style of humor is freuently employed and that it could beite tricky to pull off For what it s worth I thought the author nailed it There s some genuine wit in here subtle but also infused with that certain Austenesue charm That said I wouldn t exactly. Magic and mayhem collide with the British elite in this whimsical and sparkling debutAt his wit’s end Zacharias Wythe freed slave eminently proficient magician and Sorcerer Royal of the Unnatural.
EBOOK ONLINE Sorcerer to the Crown – jimmychooshoes.us
Call Sorcerer to the Crown an easy read especially if you re not Mediterranean Men Bundle use to the style which I m personally wasn t I confess to having a difficult time at the beginning of the novel while adjusting to the writing which I thought it was a little hard on the eyes and it made reading slow But eventually I did get into it as you can see once I reached a point where I could enjoy myself and start appreciating its cleverness and nuances this novel was a pure joyZen Cho crafts her setting with much love and care evoking the Regency era and all its punctilious social arrangements but also manages to seamlessly weave in romance adventure and political intrigue and I haven t even gotten the chance to mention the magic and all the fantastical creatures yet Dandy socialites posh boarding school matrons andarreling politicians share this wonderfully niue world with fairies dragons and magicians It is a truly delightful alternate history where magic is an integral part of lifeYou really can t ask for Sorcerer to the Crown is a deftly written novel that thoroughly explores important issues adding further depth to a story already rich with memorable characters and a pleasantly entertaining plot Zen Cho is a new fantasy novelist who is immediately going on my list of authors to watch and I m looking forward to her next book in this series This review originally appeared on my blog Shoulda Coulda Woulda BooksMan I hope the writer of this book was cackling as she wrote this That s how I pictured her especially as the book wore on just sitting there rubbing her hands and laughing as she typed going Ooooh I know what I ll do to them now I mean that s what I would have been doing as I wrote this I don t know if I could have restrained myself because I would have been very pleased with just how clever I was Maybe she could restrain herself because doubtless she is less shocked about how great she is I don t know But anyway I hope that gives you an idea of the spirit of the thing because that s the best part of itI have to be honest I wasn t ite sure about this one when I started The tone seemed forced like someone who had studied a great deal of Jane Austen and read a lot of Regency romances and was painstakingly trying to recreate the sentence structure with the result that her characters sounded a good deal wooden than they should even the excellent concept of a protagonist Zacharias Wythe the somewhat hapless well meaning Sorcerer Royal the book focuses on And then of course there was all the exposition to get set Holding Tight (Five in a Bed Book 3) up and getting our protagonists heretofore with no reason to be anywhere near each other together That part was okay I kept going for the concept than anything else magic is commonplace in England there s a whole long standing structure of magicians and familiars in place it s tiedp with politics and acknowledged as A Thing but very much tied into an otherwise recognizable Regency society that can t be bothered to be that impressed too busy being impressed with the knots in their cravats obviously You guys know that Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell is one of my favorite books right I couldn t love this concept I was going to stick around ntil the end especially since it was clearly going to deal with some racial and class issues that simmered nder the surface in that one in a blatant way and there were some cleverly placed One Eye Closed (The Pack, unanswered mystery breadcrumbs placed out early on well done ChoBut then I hit what my kindle told me was about 40% Remember how I told you guys reading JSMN and losing patience to just hang out for Strange Same damn thing here Then Strange showedp and things got amazing pretty Malones Vow uickly and never got less amazingntil the last page I laughed out loud once then twice and then traded gasping and laughing for a sustained period pretty much almost Roughing it with Ryan until the endOkay so basic plot Zacharias Wythe is the Sorcerer Royal like I told you above but he inherited his position from his mentor and father figure Sir Stephen Wythe in suspicious circumstances that were neverite explained He is clearly the most powerful magician living so as yet he still holds the staff of office but there is a louder and louder rebellion stirring amongst England s magicians about his leadership not helped of course by the fact that this is the early 1800s and Zacharias is of African birth and appearance and some Englishmen don t like acknowledging that any foreigner can do anything better than they can hey actually maybe this isn t just because it s the early 1800s Ringing some bells This situation is only made precarious by the fact that England seems to be in the process of losing the plentiful magic it once had and has been for decades No new magical creatures or familiars have appeared and the borders to Fairy have been slowly but inexorably closingEnter Prunella Gentleman aka my new fictional best friend She works at a magical school for young ladies where they are mostly taught to hide their gifts and pretend like magic doesn t exist think of it like one of those boarding schools where rich people send embarrassing daughters who get pregnant young or show signs of mental health difficulties She has lead a precarious life on the sufferance of someone who took her in but then early in the novel she makes a discovery that changes her entire life and throws her in the path of Zacharias leading to life altering conseuences for both of them The surprise is so good and her course of action is so audacious and amazing I don t want to even hint at it but suffice it to say that it leads to them making an amazing team in ways than oneAside from the wonderful plot and an outstanding cast of supporting characters in the best Regency farce fashion Rollo Damerell Aunt Georgiana what s really wonderful in the back half of the book is Cho s increased confidence and ability to handle the tone dialogue and rhythms of the genres that she s paying homage to both Regency farce and epic fantasy She really does a great job with ramping p the ridiculousness to just the right volume while never ite forgetting the serious threats that Transcending Taboos underlie all of this conflictBTW Man I hope this book is an indication that this mixed genre is here to stay Can I just makep one of these cool new subgenre names for it to help marketers Bonnet fantasy Carriage wheels and magic wands fantasy Hmmmm Come on guys we have to be able to come Black Bottom Stomp up with something to encourage people to do this Not to mention the serious girl power in this book Prunella my new BFF is as I mentionedtterly fantastic and I love the way the author goes about showing that to s She never needs her to be admired and stared at as the belle of the ball at least not than briefly before something goes terribly wrong she doesn t need her to necessarily be Mary Sue She just needs her to be determined clever to know what she wants and not be afraid of stating it whether it s feminine or feminist or not and of course to be a whole lot of fun Although Zacharias is our ostensible hero and so much of the book is from his point of view and he really does a great job of playing the straight man and the tragic hero we want out of our epic fantasies Prunella is really the true farcical heart of the novel she gives it life and insanity and the heart palpitations we want out of an adventure I told you guys she s Strange but way funnier self aware but just as ferocious when she needs to be There s some pitiless stuff in here and she s nobody s perfect heroine and man does she screw p but it s enjoyable from beginning to endI was never delighted than when I saw in parentheses after the title that this was only Sorcerer Royal 1 which hopefully means there s to come I don t think it s spoiler y of me to say that I want to see how Prunella continues her reign of terror and mayhem in the next book and who she shocks to their core nextI am sorry I was ever wary of this anyone who ever recommended this to me More fool I please be as smug as you like You deserve it It s never a good sign when it takes well over 150 pgs to get the story startedreallytruly notThis book dragged Nothing really worked for me Nothing If I could get that time back I would I want it back so much THE PREMISE aka not a bad start The British elite conuest consist of magicians called thaumaturges who are racist sexist and all have all sorts of petty bullying behavior They are all jerksAnd they are all pissed Why The new Sorcerer Royal Zacharias Wythe inherited the position based on his magic talent and intellectoh and he happens to be a former freed slave The nerve of himDespite none of them seemingly owning slaves they are pissed that he manages to conduct magic despite being so inferiorAnnnnnnnnnnd then there s the other elephant in the room We are a laughingstock a nation of hundreds of enchanters and nothing to enchant with So there s another reason to hate Zarcharias The magic is drying Tempting Kate (Regency Quartet, up and the Sorcerer Royal can t magically fix it Oh And there s one other reason to hate him Nothing disgusted a thaumaturge so much as a witch He visits what passes as a school for witches and finds one far stronger than he ever expected Essentially everyone hates Zarcharias but they hate Prunella Gentleman even because she s dark AND she is a woman AND she s a insanely powerful witchIn additionokay I m bored That s all the summary I want to do The premise does sound good There s so few YA books with people of color at the forefront and it has a strong female lead to boot Soyou may be asking what went wrong Glad you asked THE WRITING aka are we there yet No What about now She was no great reader and her choice was written in so laborious a style that that she found herself rereading the same page several times without absorbing any of the sense It took AT LEAST four times as long to say anything in this book FOUR TIMESWhy Because the author is attempting to this pseudo old timey British Victorian language super posh formal and rigidand good lord It took FOREVER There was so much bowing and kowtowing politic rhetoric and pleases and thank yous that I just couldn t stand it It was maddening THE FEMINISM aka put a ring on it Inderstand Miss Gentleman will venture to find herself a husband and only desires assistance in gaining access to the best society Essentially Prunella spends the first half of the book as an obstinent young woman She can do magic She knows what she wants and she will get it in a time where women were NEVER expected to do anything but suppress any and all individualityIt may take her seven or eight sentences to make her point but by gosh she will burst through that glass ceilingThen Prunella flipped like a dimeThe inconsistency bothered me so much Don t get me wrong I am all for a strong female lead who also wants to get married My issue comes from the way it happened One minute she s all for education and empowerment and literally the next page she s asking if she can find a husband and settling down claiming it s all she wanted all along No character development no explanation no hint at all that she even wanted to get marriedIt was matchmaking time and woe be the stuffy English jerk who stood in her way It seems impossible these days to find any truly pretty girls it makes even a dark little thing like Miss Gentleman seem a phoenix which brings Progress or Collapse us to my last point THE STRUGGLE aka everyone was a needless jerk because reasons Magicians are obstinate creatures but they can be persuaded and they esteem power above all things Okay so I m all for a book that rips down stereotypes and empowers people I love it when thenderdog climbs to the top and shows The New Goddess up all the naysayers and disbelieversbut that didn t happen The book set everythingp with Zacharias despite being brilliant at the bottom of the pack He spent his entire childhood dealing with rampart racism and is now expected to lead a bunch of racist ahole magicians Then there was Prunella arguably lower than the low despite having ngodly powers She dealt with rampart sexism and racism and decides to rise above itEverywhere we looked was society showing its gly sideand amazingly powerful andor perfect characters who must fight to the topIt could have been the language or the setting very dry despite the magicbut I just didn t care enough to want to see it fixed The author didn t create a world that could be changed easily without decades of hard effort and I don t want to stick around for thatWhen I read something I don t want to read 100 pages of this jerk saying so and so can t do blank because of her womanly weaknesses only to see her prove him wrongTHEN he finds the next issue to latch on to and to be proven wrong again and again ang againIt was frustrating to read and disappointing that throughout the book we were just hitting our heads at literally the same exact issues Over And Over For hundreds of pages Overall aka thankgawdthistorturei. Philosophers one of the most respected organizations throughout all of Britain ventures to the border of Fairyland to discover why England’s magical stocks are drying pBut when his adventure br.
Sorcerer to the Crown about magic intrigue and politics in Regency London; a seuel about cursed sisters anticolonial witches dapper dragon dandies and murderous fairies called