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The Lyra Novels (Lyra #1-5)

3.88  ·  Rating Details ·  472 Ratings  ·  34 Reviews
Five fantasy novels set in the magical world of Lyra.

Shadow Magic

While Alkyra’s noblemen squabble, an ancient enemy, the Lithmern, raises an army. And as the head of the Noble House of Brenn attempts to organize an alliance, the princess Alethia celebrates her twentieth birthday. She is quick-witted, beautiful, and handy with a throwing knife. But on the next night, she pa
ebook, 1506 pages
Published September 11th 2012 by Open Road Media Sci-Fi & Fantasy (first published January 1st 2012)
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(showing 1-30)
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Feb 07, 2017 ke-sha marked it as to-read
$3.99 on the kindle today!!!
Lisa Findley
I expected to like these much more than I did, because I'm a big fan of Wrede's funny YA fantasy. The Lyra novels are all right, but clearly straight fantasy is not where her strengths lie. She wrote these at the beginning of her career, and obviously found a better fit with her later formulas of no-nonsense ladies briskly taking care of business with a good dash of humor and self-awareness of the genre thrown in.

Anyway, The Raven Ring was my favorite, and I also liked Shadow Magic and parts of
Becky B
Jun 07, 2014 Becky B rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult, fantasy
This is a collection of 5 books Wrede wrote set in the realm of Lyra. All are independent books with the setting being the only link, though some occasionally refer to others (but it is not necessary to read them all for full understanding, nor to read them in any specific order). The books appear in the order in which Wrede wrote them, and the first happens to be her very first published book. This collection starts off with a nice forward by Wrede on the development of her writing, and how she ...more
May 21, 2017 Charlotte rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This is a series of five books that exist in the same world, but can be read independently. The characters are unique, and the stories themselves take place in different countries and cities. There are a few uniform themes (such as the threat of shadow-born), and brief mentions of things that happen in other books.

One interesting thing about this book is that they are so self-contained. While many fantasy books are epic and long, these novels have shorter stories and a smaller scope. The plot o
Jan 02, 2017 Sarahz rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
I'll review the different books separately, but I'm reviewing the series as a whole here. It isn't hard to tell that these books are from much earlier in Wrede's career, as she's clearly grown as a writer since then, but they're fun, straightforward fantasy reads. I was glad that the intro from the author explained that all the books have totally separate sets of characters, as that would've thrown me otherwise. Since I was ready for it, I enjoyed getting to see stories from such a diverse set o ...more
Amy Warren
Mar 06, 2017 Amy Warren rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2017
I adore everything Patricia Wrede writes, and this series was no exception. Because Shadow Magic is the first book Ms Wrede ever sold, I found it fascinating to see the progression in storytelling style through the five books. In all the books, the worldbuilding is spectacular: the setting and cultures feel real and immersive. All the books feature fabulously strong women who know what they want and aren't afraid to claim it. I enjoyed this series immensely.
M Kathleen
May 18, 2017 M Kathleen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Couldn't out it down!

Read the first book thinking I didn't have to finish it if it started to drag although the characters change from story to story Lyra holds them together and each adds a little dimension to the whole which is Lyra itself. Great read, worth your time.
May 16, 2017 Becca rated it liked it
See reviews left for individual novels.
Helena Van
May 16, 2017 Helena Van rated it liked it
Early work, but it was fun to see how rapidly her writing improved from book to book.
Genevieve's Human
Feb 18, 2017 Genevieve's Human rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, novel, ya
These were fun stories but not particularly memorable compared to Wrede's other work. I'd recommend them to a voracious young reader who likes fantasy and needs something new, but otherwise, I'd skip them for other of her books.
Julie Malcolm
Apr 07, 2014 Julie Malcolm rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Shadow Magic: This was the most amateurish of all the stories with things conveniently appearing when needed but still it was a fast paced enjoyable read. The romance element was wholly unbelievable and the novel wouldn't have lacked anything if had been omitted. I'd give the story 3 stars.

Daughter of Witches: This was the story I enjoyed the least probably because the protagonists were children. This was the story I felt had the greatest sense of peril and I enjoyed it despite not really liking
Juliana Groisman
Jul 12, 2016 Juliana Groisman rated it liked it
Whilst I understand that the books' commonality is only that they take place in the same world, I would recommend reading the 4th book first. It's set before the others time-line wise. It's also the best book out of the omnibus. Whilst the world of Lyra is quite engaging, as a reader I felt that's there is more information about the world I'm missing in order to fully understand the events in the novel.
My other gripe is the romance portrayed, or rather lack of any tension between the characters
Jett Wyatt
Feb 08, 2017 Jett Wyatt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had read at least a couple of these novels many years ago. They share the same world, but are not exactly a "series", as the characters and locations change for each novel. All together, they make up a nice mosaic. But they are also enjoyable separately.
Mar 11, 2015 Anna rated it liked it
REVIEW FOR SERIES AS A WHOLE: 3.5 stars. This series was one of Wrede's earlier works, and suffers from lack of emotional involvement with the characters, and a tendency to lag in action - these issues are mostly in the first 3 books. The 4th and 5th books had characters I liked, rooted for, and admired, and they save the rating from 2.5 stars. The last book in the series was without a doubt my favorite. All books could be read completely separately from each other, though I think some depth of ...more
Anoush Emrazian
Apr 14, 2014 Anoush Emrazian marked it as paused
An interesting introduction by the author. These 5 books were written over the span of 12 years. Shadow Magic is her first book and for this collection it was heavily revised to take advantage of her increased ability and skill. She even includes a sort of "editor's version" of the first chapter so the reader can see the things that were changed from the original to what she would now consider more well done. She didn't change any plot, but ended up removing 1024 words! Amazing! She said this wa ...more
David Hoyt
Nov 29, 2012 David Hoyt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy-classic
The entire series is worth reading. I've read the series many times. This is an omnibus version with the books in order. They do not need to be read in order, but it does help understanding the world's timeline. As a series it stands out, each book could stand by itself. I recommend any book, but I appreciated the publishing of the omnibus version.

The novels cover a long time over the author's career, and you can see the difference between the first and the last (which was published much later).
Jan 15, 2013 Wench rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, 2012
In her introduction to this omnibus edition, Wrede makes the point that these are early books, and were highly edited. And, having read most of her later work, the earliness shows. However, there's good stories here. I highly recommend reading them not in the order presented, but in the story-chronological order Wrede outlines in the introduction. There's a number of tie-ins and references to the others that will be much more enjoyable if you do it this way.
Feb 09, 2016 Nita rated it really liked it
These are early works that were written during a very specific period of fantasy writing and as such are good examples of that period for better and worse. If you don't like the D&D styled fantasy, you probably won't like these. I do enjoy them, so I liked these. They really shine when they go outside the tropes, like Caught in Crystal or use those tropes to go in a new direction, like The Raven Wing.
Katy M
Dec 06, 2014 Katy M rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fabulous world building, characters you'll care about.

Ms. Wrede is a consummate storyteller combining well written dialogue and well drawn characters all set into the backdrop of a complicated and well conceived world.
I didn't want to leave and very much wish for more so I can visit again.
Jan 01, 2015 Carolyn rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
Wrede has always been one of my favorite authors and it was cool to see how her writing style changed and matured over the years that it took to record the history of Lyra. While Shadow Magic is the lightest read of the five, the other four, particularly Daughter of Witches deal with dark, complex themes. I loved The Raven Ring best.

Nov 26, 2012 Texann rated it it was amazing
Shelves: on-my-kindle
This is actually my second time reading through most of these books, and it was just as good rediscovering them. Each are able to stand alone but are set in the same world but at different times and places. recommend for 6th and up. I love all of Wrede's novels.
Jan 28, 2014 Angela marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, library, kindle
1 December 2014: $5.99 on Kindle
Annalise Haigh
Aug 11, 2014 Annalise Haigh rated it liked it
More like a few short stories which were drawn out. Would have been nice to bring it all together at the end. Wanted more from all five books. The first was the best by far.
Carolyn Hoffman
Feb 14, 2013 Carolyn Hoffman rated it liked it
Ok for a quick read
Aug 23, 2015 Asti rated it really liked it
Interesting series. One with totally independent stories on each book, even hundreds of years apart.
Mar 25, 2014 RogueHireling rated it really liked it
Loved these. <3
Kirsten Ross
Feb 28, 2015 Kirsten Ross rated it really liked it
Light entertaining fantasy adventure reading with happy endings.
Apr 14, 2013 Megan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This is more like 2.5 stars to me. Not the best work I've read by her, but enjoyable. It's a memorable world that seems to need something larger to tie it all together.
Howard Brazee
Dec 25, 2014 Howard Brazee rated it really liked it

Shadow Magic (Lyra, #1)

Daughter of Witches (Lyra, #2)

The Harp of Imach Thyssel (Lyra, #3)

Caught in Crystal (Lyra #4)

The Raven Ring (Lyra, #5)
Spook Harrison
Feb 08, 2013 Spook Harrison rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really, really good, and made the whole kindle experience worthwhile! So glad I have them all at my fingertips!
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Patricia Collins Wrede was born in Chicago, Illinois and is the eldest of five children. She started writing in seventh grade. She attended Carleton College in Minnesota, where she majored in Biology and managed to avoid taking any English courses at all. She began work on her first novel, Shadow Magic, just after graduating from college in 1974. She finished it five years later and started her se ...more
More about Patricia C. Wrede...

Other Books in the Series

Lyra (5 books)
  • Shadow Magic (Lyra, #1)
  • Daughter of Witches (Lyra, #2)
  • The Harp of Imach Thyssel (Lyra, #3)
  • Caught in Crystal (Lyra #4)
  • The Raven Ring (Lyra, #5)

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“Magic and music are brother and sister,” he replied as Starbrow picked his way through the fog. “The bard’s craft has always been half magic; in times past minstrels and magicians were often one and the same. Perhaps it is because we must sing so frequently of the old days and the magic of them that we do” 2 likes
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