The Spirit Lens (Collegia Magica Series #1)

( 27 )

Overview

View our feature on Carol Berg’s The Spirit Lens.

A brand new fantasy trilogy from an author who "brilliantly brings out her characters" (Denver Post).

For Portier de Savin-Duplais, failed student of magic, sorcery's decline into ambiguity and cheap illusion is but a culmination of life's bitter disappointments. Reduced to tending the library at Sabria's last collegia magica, he fights off despair with scholarship. But when the King of Sabria ...

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The Spirit Lens (Collegia Magica Series #1)

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Overview

View our feature on Carol Berg’s The Spirit Lens.

A brand new fantasy trilogy from an author who "brilliantly brings out her characters" (Denver Post).

For Portier de Savin-Duplais, failed student of magic, sorcery's decline into ambiguity and cheap illusion is but a culmination of life's bitter disappointments. Reduced to tending the library at Sabria's last collegia magica, he fights off despair with scholarship. But when the King of Sabria charges him to investigate an attempted murder that has disturbing magical resonances, Portier believes his dreams of a greater destiny might at last be fulfilled...

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this superbly realized leadoff to Berg’s quasi-Renaissance fantasy trilogy, natural science, backed by Sabria’s King Philippe, is gaining popularity, leading some magicians to attempt his assassination. Failed mage and self-doubting librarian Portier de Savin-Duplais is chosen by Philippe, his distant cousin, to secretly probe a treacherous plot that involves his beloved queen. With fellow “agents confides” Ilario, an inane chevalier, and Dante, a ferocious renegade sorcerer, Portier embarks on an intricate quest to save king and kingdom. As in her widely praised Breath and Bone, Berg shapes the well-worn elements of epic fantasy into a lush, absorbing narrative. Even her minor characters, caught up in fiendish plots and deathly secrets, ring regally true, and Portier oscillates between rueful, reluctant, ethics-bending service and painful but necessary revelations while his old world collapses and a new one struggles to be born. (Jan.)
Library Journal
A strong supporter of science over magic, the King of Sabria appoints a failed wizard, a flamboyant knight-courtier, and a brooding rogue magus to investigate his own near murder. Is his wife behind the attack? Set in a world in which the implacable laws of science war with the resonances of magical power for supremacy, Berg's novel is rich with vivid characters and unforgettable places. VERDICT The author of the "Lighthouse" series (Flesh and Spirit; Breath and Bone) and the Rai-Kirah series (Transformation; Restoration; Revelation) spins an infectiously enjoyable series opener that fans of thought-provoking fantasy and intriguing mystery should appreciate.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780451463111
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 1/5/2010
  • Series: Collegia Magica Series , #1
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 480
  • Sales rank: 1,144,087
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Carol Berg

Though Colorado is home, Carol Berg's roots are in Texas, in a family of teachers, musicians, and railroad men. She has degrees in mathematics from Rice University and computer science from the University of Colorado, but managed to squeeze in minors in English and art history along the way. She has combined a career as a software engineer with her writing, while also raising three sons. She lives with her husband at the foot of the Colorado mountains.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 27 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(15)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

(4)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 27 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 28, 2011

    Very well written...

    Berg has an artistry to her writing that draws you in and envelopes you in her characters and their world... as pleasurable and succulent as an expensive meal served with a fine wine... a writer's writer...

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 27, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    The Spirit Lens--more fabulous characters from Carol Berg.

    Once again, Carol Berg has created a world with believable magical and political systems and wonderful characters. Though some of the "secrets" are obvious or predictable, her characters always have depth that easily overcomes any shortcomings, and her writing is compelling. I was torn between reading it all as quickly as possible and slowing down to allow myself to savor every sentence. Well done! When's the next one coming?

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 22, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    This is a super opening to what looks like a great alternate Renaissance fantasy

    The world of sorcery and magic may be coming to an end as increasingly historians and philosophers as well as King Philippe of Sabria turn to natural science for answers. When the ruler begins to close the collegia magica, the faculty and staff picture a threat to their lucrative way of life. Many of the mages believe assassinating the monarch will end this nonsense.

    Portier de Savin-Duplais has failed at everything he has attempted including flunking out as a magic student. He gets by with cheap tricks and illusions as he knows he cannot charm a flea to live on a dog; instead he is a low life curator at the last collegia magica in Sabria. However, a despondent Portia battling depression is stunned when his cousin a zillion or so blood lines apart, King Philippe assigns him with the investigation into what the monarch thinks is a plot to murder him. Portier is euphoric as he feels his greatness will be fulfilled although his companions Ilario the chevalier and Dante the rogue sorcerer seem to keep tearing down his superego.

    This is a super opening to what looks like a great alternate Renaissance fantasy. The cast is strong regardless of their significance, but especially the lead protagonist who seems like he suffers from Bipolar disorder and his zany companions. Fans will appreciate this strong beginning as science and sorcery collide when three undercover agents investigate the divine and unholy collision of murder, magic, and physics.

    Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2012

    A girl

    Lol

    0 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Another Fine Story from Carol Berg

    As always, Carol Berg delivers a strong, original story

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 27 Customer Reviews

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