The Wizard's Ward
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The Wizard's Ward (Umbria #1)

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3.63 of 5 stars 3.63  ·  rating details  ·  641 ratings  ·  35 reviews
Years before, the peaceful world of Umbria was torn apart by the ruthless Hanish invaders... Yet that is the only life Maura knows. Until her wizard guardian announces she is to be queen--but that first she must find and unite with their country's legendary Waiting King in order to overthrow the enemy occupation. Men have searched for the fabled warrior for ages--what chan...more
ebook, 416 pages
Published April 1st 2004 by Luna Books (first published 2004)
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Community Reviews

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Julie
I blame this book for my drowsiness this morning. I had to stay up to finish the end of this book or I would never have been able to sleep.

Maura Woodbury, an enchantress, has always led a quiet life...until her uncle announces that she is to be queen of all Umbria and she has to make her way to the Secret Glade and awaken the Waiting King who will drive the evil Han from Umbria forever and restore peace to all the land.

Just when Maura begins to accept her fate, no one counted on Rath Talward, a...more
Lolly's Library
An enchanting story, but ultimately a deeply unsatisfying book. It's as though the author went through all the time and trouble to create an exquisite wedding dress, full of intricate details and beautiful furbelows, only to stick it on a blank-faced and soulless store mannequin. It's obvious the author spent a lot of time building the world in this book, covering not just geography, but plants and animals, even taking a page out of Tolkein's book and creating a language. Yet all this wonderful...more
Rosa Aquafire
QUALITY: 2
ENJOYABILITY: 4

This book is wonderfully mediocre. That is not meant as an insult.

I've spent most of this year reading genuinely good books that I fall completely in love with and I'm devastated to have to part with. This was not one of those books, and that was exactly what I wanted from it. Sometimes, a book that entertains skillfully while not completely taking you over is exactly what you need, and this is one of the best books I've read that's accomplished that.

The plot is formula...more
Alice
I felt as if this book had the right combination of adventure and relationship building that peaked my interests. This book lacked the emotional roller-coaster ride of break-up-get-back-together scenarios, and I loved that aspect. I loved how Deborah Hale wrote the story and how the relationship between the two characters gradually progressed in a natural seeming process. Probably because this was an adult fiction book? I mean, there was a steamy scene in here that really surprised me in the end...more
Melissa
The Wizard's Ward has been sitting on my TBR shelves for about three years. I found it (and its sequel) on the bargain displays at Books-a-Million and couldn't resist the pretty covers and the fact that they were fantasy stories. I'm not sure what took me so long to get around to reading these, probably the fact that I just have a massive TBR pile (both physical and virtual), like every other avid reader out there.

I really enjoyed this story! The writing is generally pretty good, though the dial...more
Nancy
Maura has lived a quiet life as ward of Langbard the wizard. She’s learned healing potions and balms and stays out of the path of the evil Hans who’ve conquered her land. But when she spies an outlaw fleeing from the soldiers, she feels compelled to aid him. Giving the man shelter isn’t the wisest course of action, but her guardian oddly seems to approve. And when her beloved mentor is killed, she has no choice except to join Rath on a trek to danger. Her destiny as the legendary Destined Queen...more
Emily
It just ended funny, not funny haha, funny weird. It was good up until the end. The book read as a fantasy novel the whole way through and ended like a romance novel. Gah. The point of the book was for the Destined Queen to find the Waiting King and awake him, so they could overthrow the Hannish who had invaded the country a long time ago. Except the book ended when the Destined Queen found the Waiting King. Where was the freeing of the people? It didn't even end with them being recognized by th...more
Thelma
Really enjoyed this book.
Beverly
Nice story, I did like it.
Jessica Pesic
It was okay, but a little too simple and childish. The tale lacked the epicness and complexity that other fantasy authors such as Robert Jordan, Sara Douglass, and Juliet Marillier have already attained. The dialogue was a little awkward too, like the author couldn't decide what form it should take. But I suppose for the first-time fantasy reader this novel could be an okay choice (with the understanding that it only gets much much better from here)...or for any 13 year old girl.
Christina
My favorite part of this book was the setting. I loved the descriptions of the "vitcraft" Maura practiced, which was useful but also had its limitations. The constant bickering between the heroine and hero in the beginning was a little tiring, but I enjoyed watching them come to understand and trust one another.
I just learned that there is a sequel, and am already searching for it. That counts for something!
Crystal
The dialogue drove me bats--pseudo-formal and stilted diction; reading it felt similar to sinking into a vat of tar. Not that that's ever happened to me, really. And it's too bad. I'm usually into epic quests with a twist. I skipped to the end to see where my time and devotion might have led me...and I found a poorly written sex scene that entailed dueling metaphors and undulating hips. I closed the book.
Gardavson
What a nice read. I enjoyed this from the first page to the last. Some times a predictable read can be just as engaging as one full of plot twists. This was one of those times. I loved the heroine, the hero, and their interactions. Plenty of action. The hero, a villain, helps the heroine as she travels across the dangerous country to fulfill her destiny. Truly enjoyable.
Karey
My first Deborah Hale book. And NOT my last. Could not put this down. Ms. Hale writes the old fashioned way: you see, smell, hear the world the characters are cast in.
Brittany Herz
I was told that Deborah Hale was originally a romance author that decided to move into fantasy, so I was hoping for an interesting, but not overly complicated romance story with a fantasy setting. For the most part, that was I got and I enjoyed it. Many parts of the book were predictable, but that didn't detract from the fun.
Ashley
I really enjoyed the beginning of this book but as the chapters ended it was clear what would happen. I like the ending but I think it could have been done better. I'm not aching to read the next one. If I happen to find it in a used bookstore I'd pick it up but not seek it out.
Linda
I absolutely loved this book! Romance, witches, wizards, manly hunks, paranormal magic... interweaved to make me hate to put the book down. I've already ordered the follow-up book: The Destined Queen. I can hardly wait for it to arrive!
Jaluna Rolik
I love the way the characters interact and grow. This story really develops the characters well, while giving a great view of the world surrounding them and how it's shaped them to who they are, and even what will become of them. Truly enchanting.
Sadie
Only made it about 20 pages in. The writing just felt awkward and a wee bit simplistic. I don't know if that was the author trying to portray a sense of innocence or what, but the dialogue felt forced.
Lana Kamennof-sine
What an enjoyable read. I always enjoy strong female characters and Deborah Hale manages to create characters, male & female, that are vivid and realistic. It's fantasy writing done well.
Amanda
This is a book I read in high school, which was quite a while ago, and absolutely loved it. However, I should probably re-read it to see if it's as good as I remember it being.
Kerra
totally guilty of judging a book by its cover, but my friend made me read this and I really enjoyed it! It was kind of obvious who the waiting king was, though
Sara
Really poorly written. Characters were unsympathetic and you can guess the ending within chapters of beginning the book. Don't touch if you value your taste.
Heather
I could not get into this book, no matter how I tried. It was totally predictable from page 30, and I could get no further than that.
Trisha
Interesting, but predictable and a little slutty. thankfully they left the sex until the last page, but the ending was stupid.
Veronica
This is a really good book, not what I was expecting, but really good.

Can't wait for the next one!
Amelia, the pragmatic idealist
Hey, this was pretty good!
Review pending
Sarah Brilliant
Not particularly "good", but lots of fun
Nikel27
Read before joining Good Reads in January 2008
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