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The Novice (Black Magician Trilogy #2)

The Novice (Black Magician Trilogy #2)

4.5 115
by Trudi Canavan

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"Even if a magician's powers surface of their own accord, he will soon be dead if he does not gain the knowledge of how to control them."

Alone among all the novices in the Magicians' Guild, only Sonea comes from lowly beginnings. Yet she has won powerful allies -- including Lord Dannyl, newly promoted to Guild Ambassador. But Dannyl


"Even if a magician's powers surface of their own accord, he will soon be dead if he does not gain the knowledge of how to control them."

Alone among all the novices in the Magicians' Guild, only Sonea comes from lowly beginnings. Yet she has won powerful allies -- including Lord Dannyl, newly promoted to Guild Ambassador. But Dannyl must now depart for the Elyne court, leaving Sonea at the mercy of the lies and malicious rumors her enemies are busy spreading . . . until the High Lord Akkarin steps in. The price of Akkarin's support is dear, however, because Sonea, in turn, must protect his mysteries -- and a secret that could lead a young novice mage deep into the darkness.

Meanwhile, Dannyl's first order to resume High Lord Akkarin's long-abandoned research into ancient magical knowledge is setting him on an extraordinary journey fraught with unanticipated peril -- as he moves ever-closer to a future both wondrous . . . and terrible.

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
Australian fantasy author Trudi Canavan continues her Black Magician trilogy with the sequel to The Magicians' Guild, a novel that introduced readers to Sonea, an orphan girl with remarkable magical abilities. In The Novice, she must battle the malicious -- and potentially deadly -- machinations of the powerful magicians' guild and its evil High Lord.

After surviving a wild adventure that almost killed her, Sonea has finally been accepted as a novice into the prestigious university of the magicians' guild. But Sonea -- who grew up in the slums of the city Imardin -- is a fish out of water at the university, whose students all come from wealthy and powerful families. Even though she is easily the most gifted student, her peers ostracize her and play hurtful pranks on her. In a vast university of hundreds of students and teachers, it seems everyone is against Sonea and is waiting to see her fail.

Meanwhile, Dannyl, a guild ambassador to the distant kingdom of Elyne, is on a secret mission to find out the shadowy history of the enigmatic High Lord, who may very well be behind a series of gruesome murders in Imardin that involve black magic.

Fans of epic fantasy who have already sampled Australian authors like Sara Douglass, Cecilia Dart-Thornton, Juliet Marillier, and Ian Irvine should definitely give Canavan a try. The Novice is escapist literature at its very best. Paul Goat Allen

Product Details

Bolinda Publishing Pty, Limited
Publication date:
Black Magician Trilogy , #2
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
8.37(w) x 7.00(h) x 2.50(d)

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Read an Excerpt

The Novice
The Black Magician Trilogy Book 2

Chapter One

The Acceptance Ceremony

For a few weeks each summer, the sky over Kyralia cleared to a harsh blue and the sun beat down relentlessly. In the city of Imardin, the streets were dusty and the masts of ships in the Marina writhed behind the heat haze, while men and women retreated to their homes to fan themselves and sip juices or -- in the rougher parts of the slums -- drink copious amounts of bol.

But in the Magicians' Guild of Kyralia these scorching days hailed the approach of an important occasion: the swearing in of the summer intake of novices.

Sonea grimaced and tugged at the collar of her dress. Though she had wanted to wear the same simple, but well-made clothes she had worn while living in the Guild, Rothen had insisted that she needed something fancier for the Acceptance Ceremony.

Rothen chuckled. "Don't worry, Sonea. It will all be over soon and you'll have robes to wear -- and I'm sure you'll get sick of those soon enough."

"I'm not worried," Sonea told him irritably.

His eyes brightened with amusement. "Really? You don't feel even a little nervous?"

"It's not like the Hearing last year. That was wild."

"Wild?" His eyebrows rose. "You are nervous, Sonea. You haven't let that one slip in for weeks."

She gave a small sigh of exasperation. Since the Hearing five months earlier, when Rothen had won the right to be her guardian, he had given her the education that all novices must attain before starting at the University. She could read most of his books without help, and she could write, as Rothen put it, "well enough to get by." Mathematics had been harder to grasp, but the history lessons were fascinating.

During those months, Rothen had corrected her whenever she spoke a word of slum slang, and constantly made her rephrase and repeat herself until she sounded like a lady of a powerful Kyralian House. He warned her that the novices would not be as accepting of her past as he was, and she would only make things worse if she drew attention to her origins every time she spoke. He had used the same argument to persuade her to wear a dress for the Acceptance Ceremony, and though she knew he was right, it did not make her feel any more comfortable.

A circle of carriages came into view as they reached the front of the University. Beside each stood a set of primly dressed servants, all wearing the colors of the House they served. As Rothen appeared they turned and bowed to him.

Sonea stared at the carriages and felt her stomach turn over. She had seen vehicles like this before, but not so many together. Each was made of highly polished wood, carved and painted with intricate designs, and in the center of each door was a square design indicating which House the carriage belonged to—the House incal. She recognized the incals for Paren, Arran, Dillan and Saril, some of the most influential Houses in Imardin.

The sons and daughters of those Houses were going to be her classmates.

At that thought her stomach felt as if it were turning inside out. What would they think of her, the first Kyralian from outside the great Houses to join their ranks for centuries? At the worst they would agree with Fergun, the magician who had tried to prevent her joining the Guild last year. He believed that only the offspring of the Houses should be allowed to learn magic. By imprisoning her friend, Cery, he had blackmailed Sonea into cooperating with his schemes. And those schemes would have proven to the Guild that Kyralians of the lower classes were lacking in morals and not to be trusted with magic.

But Fergun's crime had been discovered, and he had been sent away to a distant fort. It did not seem to Sonea like a particularly severe punishment for threatening to kill her friend, and she could not help wondering if it would deter others from doing something similar.

She hoped that some of the novices would be like Rothen, who didn't care that she had once lived and worked in the slums. Some of the other races that attended the Guild might be more accepting of a girl from the lower classes, too. The Vindo were a friendly people; she had met several in the slums who had traveled to Imardin to work in vineyards and orchards. The Lan, she had been told, did not have lower and higher classes. They lived in tribes and ranked men and women through trials of bravery, cunning and wisdom -- though where that would place her in their society she couldn't guess.

Looking up at Rothen, she thought of all he had done for her and felt a pang of affection and gratitude. Once she would have been horrified to find herself so dependent on, of all people, a magician. She had hated the Guild once, and first used her powers unintentionally when throwing a stone at a magician in anger. Then, as they searched for her, she had been so sure they meant to kill her she had dared to seek the Thieves' help, and they always extracted a high price for such favors.

As her powers grew uncontrollable, the magicians convinced the Thieves to hand her over into their care. Rothen had been her captor and teacher. He had proven to her that magicians -- well, most of them -- were not the cruel, selfish monsters that the slum dwellers believed them to be.

Two guards stood at either side of the open University doors. Their presence was a formality observed only when important visitors were expected at the Guild. They bowed stiffly as Rothen led Sonea into the Entrance Hall.

Though she had seen it a few times before, the hall still amazed her. A thousand impossibly thin filaments of a glass-like substance sprouted from the floor, supporting stairs that spiraled gracefully up to the higher levels ...

The Novice
The Black Magician Trilogy Book 2
. Copyright © by Trudi Canavan. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Meet the Author

Trudi Canavan is the author of the bestselling Black Magician trilogy—The Magician's Guild, The Novice, and The High Lord—as well as Priestess of the White and Last of the Wilds, Books One and Two of her Age of the Five trilogy. She lives in a little house on a hillside, near a forest, in the Melbourne suburb of Ferntree Gully in Australia. She has been making up stories about things that don't exist for as long as she can remember, and was amazed when her first published story received an Aurealis Award for Best Fantasy Short Story in 1999. A freelance illustrator and designer, she also works as the designer and Art Director of Aurealis, a magazine of Australian Fantasy & Science Fiction.

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Novice 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 115 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good solid read, suitable for YA and adult. I had an unusually strong connection with the characters, which shows really good writing and excellent handling of homosexual issues.
capriccio More than 1 year ago
I read this book immediately after finishing the first in the series, The Magacian's Guild. Canavan again delivers a good, solid story. This one is less character driven that the first, but the plotline takes some nice unexpected twists and ends leaving me ready to purchase the last book of the trilogy. I look forward to seeing how this author will develop in future books.
Zemmenar More than 1 year ago
This story follows a young poor girl Sonea on her path towards enlightenment if you will. Going from lowly peasent status and rising against all wishes and odds through the once privelaged to noble class only rankings of the magicians academy. I can't give you a better review that what the book synopsis itself is because if that doesn't sell you along with the excellent track record of the Author I don't know what will. 5 star story all together a must read book series along with its sister books of the trilogy and also The Magicians Apprentice and The new ambassadors Mission trilogy that is in production now.
DAY-READER More than 1 year ago
Picking up where Magician left off. I was pleased how the author mentioned the characters Sonea, Dannylnd Lorlen in each chapter, Im really interested in Dannyl, I just hope he really isn't that weird sort of fellow (lol)....Some interesting things takes place with Dannyl and his adenture, Sonea progresses more and Lorlen continues to battle with the truth read from Sonea. I just wished I got to read more about Cery and the thieves guild. Enjoy
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d1of1 More than 1 year ago
This book kept my interest all the way through, and made me want to continue to the next book.
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I like to read books that are series. The first book has you hooked right away. The second book is just as good. I have started the third book and it also is hard to put down. Great books, if you want to relax and read a series of books that are hard to put down, then this series are for you.
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