Sunday, 10 October 2010

Book Review - The Accidental Sorcerer

Synopsis
He's blown up a factory, lost his job, and there's a chance that he's not really a Third Grade wizard after all. Career disaster strikes again. Luckily, an influential friend manages to get him a posting. So it's off to New Ottosland to be the new Court Wizard for King Lional. His back-up, an ensorcelled bird with a mysterious past, seems dubious. But it's New Ottosland, or nothing. Unfortunately, King Lional isn't the vain, self-centred young man he appeared to be. With a Princess in danger, a bird-brained back-up, and a kingdom to save, Gerald soon suspects he might be out of his depth. And if he can't keep this job, how can he become the wizard he was destined to be ... 


My Review
I first saw this book about 6 months ago and thought it looked good, but found out book 3 wasn't out until this month, so i decided to wait to read it, so i could go through all of them at once. In the meantime my colleague at work read it and told me she really enjoyed it, so i was looking forward to reading it even more. It's quite a fat book, at 488 pages it's a good size, i sat down on Friday to start it with high hopes. 
Gerald is the main character, as a lowly third grade wizard with no real talent and always getting in trouble, he is sent on a general inspection job at a Wizard's Staff Factory. But unfortunately, gets involved in disaster which leads to the factory being blown up. He is of course fired and his name marked with disgrace. He finds a job in the paper in another 'country' for a Court Wizard for King Lionel the 43rd. Leaping at the chance to get away from the disaster he has left behind, Gerald goes for it. But the post isn't all it seems. 
I felt this could be a really good story, but to me it went on a bit too much. At 160 pages in, the only thing that had happened was what i summed up above, which is also what is on the blurb. Why it took so many pages to get that far i do not know. There was a lot of unnecessary description and conversations that seemed to have no real impact on the story. But i don't like to give up on a book so i decided to carry on. As the story progressed i began to enjoy it a bit more, but still can't say I was really into it. I fact I sat and read a magazine on the sofa just to avoid picking up this book. I made myself sit down this morning to finish the last half, and  in the last 150 pages it got a lot more exciting and i wanted to know what would happen. But when i had finished i didn't feel any satisfaction, the story comes to a natural end, but is clearly set for book two, and whereas usually i look forward to reading a series, i can only say the thought of two more fat books in this series puts me off. I'm not really sure i will bother with them, may try book 2 to see if it improves it's style. 
I will say though that it was refreshing to have characters aged 20-25, not many stories focus on this age group and it was nice to see, as that is my age, i could relate to some of the issues the characters were experiencing.
So overall, a good story with some interesting characters, but too much padding and unnecessary  writing. Could make an excellent 250 page book!


My Rating
I would give this book 5/10, good idea but too long, wouldn't read it again

6 comments:

Lou Rohde said...

Was the "padding" based on too much description in the book? I'm usually needing a little more action in my books.

Lou

barmybex said...

Yeah, it over described everything, but also had a lot of dialogue between characters that didn't really have any affect on the story, was just nonsense chatter.
Wanted more action, less talking! :D

Lou Rohde said...

I've recently read a book with similar dialogue. Seems too forced.

barmybex said...

yeah it definitely does, what book was it you read?

Lou Rohde said...

Balancing Acts by Zoe Fishman. I have the review on my site if you are interested :)
http://readerrecommended.blogspot.com/2010/09/balancing-acts-by-zoe-fishman.html

barmybex said...

cool, will check it out :D