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Advent (Advent Trilogy #1)

3.14 of 5 stars 3.14  ·  rating details  ·  933 ratings  ·  289 reviews
A drowning, a magician’s curse, and a centuries-old secret.

1537. A man hurries through city streets in a gathering snowstorm, clutching a box in one hand. He is Johann Faust, the greatest magician of his age. The box he carries contains a mirror safeguarding a portion of his soul and a small ring containing all the magic in the world. Together, they comprise something unim
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Hardcover, 451 pages
Published July 3rd 2012 by Atria/Emily Bestler Books (first published February 2nd 2012)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Lou
This is a deep cerebral story that involves a young boy and magic. No this is has no similarities with Harry Potter, it has a world of its own. He transports you at times to the origins of this magic world and has included ancient mythology. The boy must be taken upon and accustomed to new ways and abilities. I sense the next book in the series to include even more adventure. This is really tailored for an adult audience, the author has created a richly filled world of beyond the realm of what w ...more
A.E. Shaw

Oh, no. I didn't enjoy this for a moment, and yet, if you'd told me there was a book written by someone with an excellent command of language, that mashed up Arthurian legend with Faust, the Greeks and still more myth, I'd probably have bitten your hand off to read it.

I've been trying to work out what it is I didn't love, indeed, actively disliked, and the best I can do is an analogy. It's like walking into an old shed, and on first glance, it seems rammed with stuff, full to the brim of fascin
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Catie
I got to 60%, and I just couldn't drum up the enthusiasm to go any further. I think about half of this book could have been edited out - pages and pages of description that is well-written and sometimes beautiful but is largely irrelevant to the story. I lost patience. If you like stories that really take their time, mythology, and eerie old mansions then this might be for you! I am giving up.
Tina Rath
This was actually published in February this year, but I have only recently seen it reviewed (in the Fortean Times, as it happens) and as soon as I did I downloaded it onto my Kindle and read the lot, staying up until after midnight to finish it.
I love this book. I was rather surprised by some of the reviews which suggest it is too long (no! I would have liked more), with too much description and even what one reviewer called purple prose. I like the style. I was hooked immediately by the main
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Grady McCallie
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Daniel Withrow
My wife mentioned Susan Cooper's Dark is Rising series as a comparison to this book, and I think that holds up. Sure, it's Yet Another Book about the return of magic to our world, starring a disaffected teenage boy. But unlike many books in that subgenre, its magic is compelling and interesting, not videogamy. In part that's because the magic is deeply rooted in culture: the book is set in west Great Britain, and though I'm totally ignorant about west Great Britain rural culture, the author obvi ...more
Stephanie D.
The magic in Advent by James Treadwell is strange, dark, and ancient, but has an air of familiarity. Treadwell weaves Arthurian legends, Greek and Celtic mythologies, and Faustian bargains in inventive ways to make for a rich and complex world.

Advent reminded me very much of when I first started reading The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper, a similarity capitalized upon by the book's tagline "Magic is rising." The strong Celtic imagery and setting, a prophecy involving a teenage boy, an omniprese
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Allison Barron
Advent was a book I looked forward to reading for its wonderfully strange world seeped in mythology. The world was intriguing and made me think odd creatures and magic really could be lying in wait at the far corners of the earth. As much as I wanted to love the story, however, I just couldn't get into it. It started extremely slow, with pages and pages about Gavin traveling to his aunt's house and then meeting the people in Pendurra. Although there was the mystery of why Gavin was seeing someth ...more
Shaz Goodwin
This amazing world that debut author James Treadwell has created begins in 1537 where we meet Johannes Faust as he prepares to set sail for England. The next chapter we meet Gavin Stokes who is on the train that will take him to his aunt Gwen in Cornwall. On the train he meets Professor Hester Lightfoot (who is a key character in certain events) and we’re introduced to the ghost of Miss Grey … who used to be accepted as Gavin’s ‘invisible friend’ when younger but is not accepted by his family no ...more
Karen Rye
Set in the present day, Advent is about the return of the forgotten magic. The main protagonist is a fifteen year old boy, Gavin, who knows that there is something different about him, but has spent most of his life trying to conform to the expectations of the adults around him. He has learnt to studiously ignore the ghostly Miss Grey who never speaks and scares him senseless half the time, but he knows she's there. Eventually he tries to explain this and other magical concerns to one of his sch ...more
Kestrell
In the past few years, I've almost entirely ceased to enjoy fantasy fiction, as most of it seems preoccupied with vacuous prettiness constructed from the same old cliches. Therefor, I was very pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed _Advent_, which reminded me quite a bit of The Dark Is Rising series by Susan Cooper, as it contains much of the same sense of the uncanny. This is not a cutesy tame magic. Also, the writing is dark and lovely. I can understand why some people thought this book wa ...more
Andy
I dont very oft not finish a book BUT guess what? 100pg's in & i could take no more. Nothing really happens & it jus crawls along going nowhere which is a shame as the synopsis for it sounds like a decent read. never mind, Joe Abercrombie's First law Trilogy more than made up for it.
Kirsty (overflowing library)
Giving up on this one for now as really not my sort of book despite being beautifully written. Learning more and more than fantasy and me don't mix.
Joe Jones
Gavin is a 15 year old teenager living in England who just doesn't fit in. His problem is he sees things that are not there, in particular a woman he calls Miss Grey. When he is shipped off to visit his Aunt for a week, Gavin's imaginary world quickly intrudes into the real one. He then has to figure out just what is going on and who he really is before it is too late.

This is book one of a new trilogy that is a mash up of the Faust and Gawain legends. I'm still trying to decide if this is suppo
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Amber (Books of Amber)
Pretty boring, I'm sorry to say. I just couldn't get into it.

Full review here: http://booksofamber.blogspot.co.uk/20...

The beginning of Advent was very intriguing, as the author mixes flashback chapters with the present day, and it was enough to keep me reading steadily for the first fifty to seventy pages. The flashbacks were very enjoyable, and while I didn't enjoy the present day stuff as much, I was still looking forward to finding out more about the book.

After the first one hundred pages o
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TheBookSmugglers
Original review posted on The Book Smugglers

Ana’s Take:

England, 1537. Johann Faust, the greatest magician of his age hurries to board the ship that will take him to new shores. He carries with him a box which contains a mirror safeguarding part of his soul and a small ring that holds all the magic on the world. Tragically, the ship sinks and magic disappears from the world.

England, present day. Fifteen-year-old Gavin Stokes is about to embark on a journey which will change his life forever. He i
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Laura
I love mythology. I've always enjoyed reading about the myths and legends of various different cultures and Treadwell blends bits and pieces of some of my favourites up in a blender and laces Advent with them. I also love poetic prose. I like narratives to weave and wander. It's one of the reasons I love Tolkien or the meandering narrative of Susanna Clarke. Given my liking of these things, I feel Advent should have sat quite nicely with my tastes... and yet I can't quite say that it did.

Even t
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Allison Campbell
ADVENT by James Treadwell: I love fantasy. I re-read LORD OF THE RINGS every couple of years. I excel at suspension of disbelief and immersing myself in alternate worlds. So I expected to fall in love with ADVENT, the first in a trilogy that weaves together the Faust legend, Greek mythology including the always-fascinating Cassandra, and Celtic folklore, all propelled by a confused teenager who has always conversed with people who aren't there. It may be that in the context of the entire trilogy ...more
Lia Marcoux
James Treadwell's writing is very strong, but the narrative is not. For the first one hundred pages I had that aw-yeah-air-guitar feeling of being in good hands, which dwindled as...nothing happened, and kept happening in similarly-described ways. I like long books but the content didn't require over 400 pages. Bafflingly he included one of the most interesting parts of an unrelated story over three pages at the very end. What? It's just, this book was boring. It had really great moments but the ...more
Yolanda Sfetsos
When I found out about this book, I was instantly intrigued. A teenage boy and lost magic, sounds awesome right? Actually, I couldn't wait to get stuck into it...

Gavin is fifteen, and he isn't exactly your average teenager. He sees things other people don't, and his parents don't understand him. Actually, they don't seem to want him around them. So when he gets on a train and heads to Cornwall to stay with his aunt, he's actually happy to get away from them.

However, when he gets to his destinat
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Annie
First Look: Initially, I was attracted to the cool cover. The premise involving the Faust legend intrigued me as well.

Setting: Pendurra was oddly backwards. It was supposed to be, a little, I presume, but it seemed too much so. I mean, didn't they have a gas station, at least, or anyplace like that where Gavin could have gone for help? It seemed like the whole village was very out of touch with the modern world. Thiswould makesense, in context, but the author never really let me know for sure,
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Rhys
Review originally posted on ThirstforFiction.com

The ocean has kept its secret for a long time, but now it is giving it up to the earth. It will be found- the magic ring of the greatest magus in the world- and it will be at the centre of a power struggle.

Gavin never knew he was different until everyone started telling him that it wasn’t normal to hear voices. Miss Grey, he called her, and she became his secret. The only person who ever understood him was Gwen; his odd aunt. Now Gavin is visiting
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Ellen
This is a truly peculiar book - neither completely adult fiction nor young adult fiction (not for children in part because of the use of the f-word). It is very, very British. It is supposed to be fantasy and to have to do with the return of magic to the world but the way is so torturous and reading this book depends on so many things - for example, there is a fairly important character in the book named "Holly" who sings part of an English traditional Christmas carol. To fully understand this c ...more
Donna
ADVENT was one of those books that I DESPERATELY wanted to like but no matter how hard I tried it just kept falling short. Ultimately I can add this one to my hearty DNF pile as of late. I tried to hard to like this one. I kept giving it the benefit of the doubt but by the time things started picking up I was too tired of trying to care and couldn't muster the want to keep it up.

Gavin's a character that wallows in his own self pity for about two thirds of the book, constantly harping on how no o
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Annie
I suspect I’m well outside the target audience for this one – I’d assume it’ll be marketed for young adults of Gavin’s young teen age but 400+ pages of tiny print, strong language in places and magical sequences from the 1500s might put it outside the comfort zone of the Harry Potter fan. But this really was a little gem. The first of a trilogy, set in Cornwall in the present day but turning into a fantastical magic story with engaging young characters and building a belief in magic, mythical cr ...more
Mary
Advent started out as a very promising read along the lines of Harry Potter. The protagonist is a young boy/man 15 who knows there is something different about him. His parents struggle to change him, and he gets kicked out of school. So while his parents go on a ski vacation, he travels to see him new age style aunt who he hasn't seen since he was very young.

Gavin aka Gwain is haunted so to speak by a woman that only he can see. He calls her Miss Gray. Over the years, he has wanted the comfort
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Leah
Rating: 3 of 5

Ahhhh! Another book I didn't know was the first in a trilogy beforehand. It's not that I'm against trilogies (or series in general), but there are nuances involved that some writers don't have right out the gate. For instance, the first book should possess a complete story all its own and not depend on its sequels to deliver the story promised in book one. I'm not referring to a few unanswered questions or natural curiosities or a hunger for more of a story's world, either. When Ad
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Pctrollbreath
This is a book that manages at once to intrigue you and to annoy the hell out of you.

The storyline is interesting and certainly hints at more interesting things to come. But all we really have at this stage of the series is hints. The story in this book was, besides the fairly interesting base concept, pretty much run of the mill fantasy. Someone who has read a lot of fantasy will not find any surprises here.

The style in which the book is written is just annoying. The author is addicted to descr
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Joanne Sheppard
Set in Cornwall and steeped in a strange concoction of folklore from Greek myth to Faust via Arthurian legend, James Treadwell’s Advent is an eerie fantasy in the tradition of Alan Garner and Susan Cooper, in which ancient magic surges back into being in modern day rural England.

It’s apparently aimed at a young adult readership – at least, that was the section in which I found it at Waterstone’s and the main character is a misunderstood 15-year-old. But, like Garner’s Red Shift and The Owl Servi
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SJH (A Dream of Books)
This is the first book in an exciting new trilogy. Don't let the length of the book put you off because it's well worth every second spent in the company of Gavin and co.

'Advent' got off to an intriguing start - the very first chapter is set in 1537 and centres on the greatest Magus in the world. My interest was immediately piqued and I couldn't wait to read on and further immerse myself in the story. After the first chapter, the focus changes to the present day with young Gavin setting off on t
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Ending/teaser?...what was that about?! spoilers! 4 16 Aug 19, 2013 06:54AM  
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James Treadwell was born in West London and is still living there more than forty years on. Formerly an academic specialising in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British literature, he is now, and hopes always to be, a writer of fantasy novels.

His current vocation can probably be blamed on reading Roger Lancelyn Green’s Myths of the Norsemen and Barbara Leonie Picard’s retellings of the Iliad an
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More about James Treadwell...
Anarchy: A Novel (Advent Trilogy #2) Criminology Autobiographical Writing and British Literature 1783-1834 Arcadia Interpreting Wagner

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