Book Review: Mairelon the Magician

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Title: Mairelon the Magician (Mairelon #1)
Author: Patricia Wrede
Summary: [from GoodReads] Kim doesn’t hesitate when a stranger offers her a small fortune to break into the travelling magician’s wagon in search of a silver bowl. Kim isn’t above a bit of breaking-and-entering. Having grown up a waif in the dirty streets of London-disguised as a boy!-has schooled her in one hard lesson: steal from them before they steal from you.

But there is something odd about this magician. He isn’t like the other hucksters and swindlers that Kim is used to. When he catches her in the act, Kim thinks she’s done for.
Until he suggests she become his apprentice. Kim wonders how tough it could be faking a bit of hocus pocus.

But Mairelon isn’t an act. His magic is real.

My Review: I had so much trouble deciding what to review today! Both of the books I read this week were so great, but I thought since there’s been a lot around the net lately about Maria V. Snyder and her books, maybe this week I should feature the less obscure book.

Patricia Wrede has been a favorite of mine ever since I first read the Enchanted Forest series. I have obsessively read pretty much everything else she has written, so I was surprised when I came across one that I hadn’t heard of. This one was published before I discovered her, so perhaps that’s why I missed it. But, whatever the reason, I was so happy to find out I had one more to read! Anyway, the point of all this is that my absolute favorite thing about any Patricia Wrede book is her style. She has such a unique way of creating mysterious but lovable characters. She gives voice to those characters you think you’d never relate to, because they’re so different, and yet you feel like you know them better than your own self.

This particular novel was very interesting to me because of the blend between history and fantasy. Some authors do really well at taking a historical setting we know and rearranging it to fit magic in the middle. This one reminded me of Diana Wynne Jones’s work, and Jones is one of my favorite authors of all time.

If you haven’t tried anything by Patricia Wrede, then shame on you! But please, give this one a try!

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