A Matter of Magic

A Matter of Magic

by Patricia C. Wrede
4.4 118

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A Matter of Magic 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 118 reviews.
danibookworm91 More than 1 year ago
A Matter of Magic was a nice, quick read that fulfilled my desire for both fantasy and historical fiction. Originally published as two separate books, Mairelon the Magician (published in 1991) and The Magician's Ward (published in 1997), A Matter of Magic gives you both for the price of one. The stories in both books are not directly related, but it makes sense to offer the reader's the full tale of Kim and Mairelon in one book. The first part of the book, originally Mairelon the Magician, I found entertaining, but at times confusing. There were a lot of secondary characters and everyone was after the same thing, some set of magic trinkets, that I kept easily getting confused and could not keep straight what character was what and who was good in bad. As the book progressed it got clearer but I was still confused until after the climax, where what everyone has been searching for is found. Then everything became clearer. I enjoyed the second installment, originally The Magician's Ward, a lot more then the first part. I was able to read through the second half much faster and make a lot more sense of the story. I loved seeing Kim progress from a street rat living as a thief into a respectable lady. The plot was not as complicated as the first half of the book making it a lot easier to understand. My only issue with this story line was the romance seemed to jump a little to quickly off the page. I saw it coming but would have liked to see it developed a bit more before the "bam! I'm in love." Overall, this book was a nice, quick read that I brought on a whim for Nook. I enjoyed it and did fulfill my desire to read historical and fantasy fiction at the same time.
WaltzingJoe More than 1 year ago
This was one of the most delightful books I have read in a while. The characters are quite enchanting. The plot of the first book kind of bogs down at the end but don't let that stop you from reading this. The second book was so good I was sorry when I finished it--both my wife and I got caught up in this world of magic and didn't want to leave.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well, I enjoyed these books (yes, there are two in this ebook). However, there were some oddities that kept me from giving it/them an overall 5. First, the two stories are mysteries. I don't know why, but I was expecting more of a fantasy type story and less of a mystery that just happens to involve magic. Secondly, the end romance did not seem to be developed enough and I was honestly surprised when the main character "realized" she loved a certain someone, but I'll talk more about it later. This is just one example of a few inconsistencies that plague this book. *Spoiler Warning* A Matter of Magic centers around a female street urchin who dresses like a boy to protect herself from getting sent to a brothel. She's a bit of a thief and is hired by a "toff" (gentry) to break into a street magician's performance wagon. She breaks in during a show, but is surprised by a protective spell and is caught. Mairelon the Magician has her tag along with him while he chases after a magical platter. Mairelon, Kim (the girl), and Hunch (Mairelon's assistant/henchman) set off for the country on the word of a friend of the magician. There the trio finds a bunch of people from Kim's life in London and some other characters that pop up. Most of the characters just serve a particular purpose in the plot and aren't well developed. But, that's OK. You don't need 30 main characters. Back to the story, they find out that a certain lord was behind the original theft of the platter and its matching bowl and balls (odd objects...), the theft for which Mairelon had been blamed. Mairelon's name is cleared, and he is able to move back to London, opting to take Kim with him. On a side note, all throughout this time, the relationship between Kim and Mairelon seems to be like father-daughter or master-apprentice. They become friendly, but not romantically so. The mystery itself also wasn't much of a mystery. While there was some foreshadowing, I never had that "Ah!" where you realize what all of the clues added up to. It seemed more like the author randomly threw out clues to match the early assumption that a certain person was guilty of the theft. The second book is back in London, but this time in the nice noble portion. Kim at first flounders in society, but is readily accepted by the nobles. This is odd because this is supposed to be set about four centuries ago, so the nobles would be extremely unlikely to accept an illegitimate nobody because she can do a few magic tricks. Anyway, there is a break in at Mairelon's (Richard Merrill, now) house, and Kim catches the burglar in the act. However, the man escapes, but they look at him with magic and notice a few details though his face is covered. There are then more social events, and Mairelon/Merrill looses his powers. Kim covers for him at her coming out party by doing her illusion pretty much by herself. Men immediately begin to try to woo her. They don't, though she is proposed to by a marquis. She realizes that she is in love with Mairelon. They find and capture the bad guy, who we've always known was the bad guy. A grouping of wizards gets Mairelon his powers back and take the powers away from the bad guy. Mairelon proposes and Kim accepts. However, until Kim "realizes" she love Mairelon, I always thought of their relationship as more father-daughter, which it is decidedly in the first book. It was odd. Good book, but not great. Enjoyable, but not a classic.
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A very enjoyable read, two in one.
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liem11 More than 1 year ago
This is one of those novels that really doesn't fit well in any category. Combining a historical fiction, mystery and fantasy book into one and doing great at all three. Set in Victorian England that just happens to have magic an ex-street brat teams up with a roguish nobleman to solve a crime. There also is a bit of romance thrown in for good measure. I have read this several times and its just as good as the first!
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LISA MALONEY More than 1 year ago
I found this to be downright weird and tremendusly scatterbrained.
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