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The Prodigal Mage (Fisherman's Children #1)

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  4,013 Ratings  ·  115 Reviews
Many years have passed since the last Mage War. It has been a time of great change. But not all changes are for the best, and Asher's world is in peril once more.

The weather magic that keeps Lur safe is failing. Among the sorcerers, only Asher has the skill to mend the antique weather map that governs the seasons, keeping the land from being crushed by natural forces. Yet,
ebook, 512 pages
Published August 10th 2009 by Orbit (first published August 2009)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jan 12, 2011 Ithlilian rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I absolutely loved Kingmaker/Kingbreaker, and I really wanted to love The Prodigal Mage as well. The things I loved about the previous novels don't hold true in this book. I loved Asher's character and really understood where he was coming from in The Innocent Mage and The Awakened Mage. I liked his attitude and ability to set everyone straight. In The Prodigal Mage he comes off as a bitter old man. Asher and his wife argue and fight nonstop in this book. It really bothered me. When they aren't ...more
Adam Collings
May 12, 2014 Adam Collings rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Prodigal Mage is quite unique amongst fantasy novels that I've read. It is very much character-driven so you should not expect a breakneck paced plot. The father / son relationship is central to the story and is explored quite well.

Rather than facing a human villain in this story, the main antagonistic force is the land itself - the weather. The land is dying, poisoned by left-over magic from a defeated dark lord. While this may sound potentially bland, I felt the sense of impending doom as
Jan 21, 2013 Amanda rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
As a followup to the Kingmaker, Kingbreaker books, this one fails on several levels. Where the first two books had the strength of Asher and Gar's friendship to sustain them, there is no such emotional bond in this one.

First, the book is split into two parts, I suppose according to the turning point for Lur itself, but I found it to be somewhat awkward. The first part spans about 20 years. The first beat establishes Rafel's burning obsession with magic and his rebellious, stubborn nature as we
Jun 28, 2011 A.C rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Where are the women in this book? Even when the author is female it is most of the time a male dominated world with marginal roles for the women. (why do the women in fantasyworlds keep on wearing long dresses as if they live in OUR past? Okay it is mostly set in a kind of medievel world. But I have sometimes the feeling that Tolkien made a template and every new writer fills it with his or her own story and forgets that we live in the 21th century - but this aside)Even Danthe is just on the sid ...more
Blodeuedd Finland
I would not say that this series can be read just like this. You will not get the entire back story. Sure you could enjoy it, but you really should read the series that takes place 10 years before. And the prequel that explains why all these people are in trouble anyway.

But anyway this book; 10 years ago they saved Lur and got rid of Morg. The Olken and Doranen are now equals (before the Doranen were the Lords and if the Olken used magic they got killed.) Asher the hero from the previous series
Saoirse Sterling
This book didn't make me feel sympathetic or any other kind of connection with the characters to make me want to read the sequel to it. All the characters seemed to be really extreme: either extremely cocky, extremely arrogant, extremely stupid, extremely fragile, extremely helpless, extremely annoying or extremely ignorant. There seemed to be no middle ground, no mixture, people either listened or they didn't, or they were too arrogant to even think about anything else. I don't think it was rea ...more
Peter E.  Frangel
Karen Miller is a popular fantasy author from Australia. Apparently she has written quite a few novel down under but only a few, more recent ones have made past our borders. The Prodigal Mage is the first book in one of her new series and I thought it was quite good.

But I’m not really sure whether or not it was much better than just ‘quite good’. There are a few things that I really liked, mostly about the writing style, and other things that weren’t so exciting.

Here’s what I really liked:

- The
Mark Muckerman
Book three of the Innocent Mage series introduces us to the next geneneration of mages: Opening some 8-10 years after the defeat of Morg, Asher is now a leader in the kingdom (more a republic than a kingdom now), with wife and children. This story focuses on the evolution of Asher's son as a mage in his own right, with the parallel and forumlaic backstory of father and son conflict: The son who wants to use and flaunt his power, vs. the older and wiser father who seeks to suppress him. The overa ...more
Kate Winiarska
Oct 18, 2011 Kate Winiarska rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After reading The Innocent Mage and Awakened Mage and enjoying them so much I was hoping that Prodigal Mage would be just as satisfying a read and I wasn't disappointed.

Though not as action packed as the first two books, Prodigal Mage has a strong story and I couldn't put it down.

Asher hasn't changed a bit (thank God) and his son and daughter are brilliant characters in their own rights. The language styles in the book are still fantastically written and very funny, I've not read many books wher
Mar 19, 2010 Arctic rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not up to the standard set in the first two books. This one is nothing more than one VERY long prelude tot eh next book in the series.
Most of the book you want Asher, the main character from the first two books, to stop whining and moping and get on with what needs to be done. But that's just it, he can't so his son has to, and that is what this book is about. It's also the classic villain resurrection plot. The ultimate villain from the first two books is back and the world is hurting.
Oct 25, 2014 Sharon rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The problem with this book was that the mystery was interesting but the pacing was terrible. It's 500 some odd pages of people either arguing with each other or keeping secrets from each other or incessant whining about how they aren't getting their way. Stupid secrets are kept. Stupid lies are told. And Asher is an aggrieved martyr who can do no wrong, but the big bad arrogant people can't see it his way. I used to like him but here I absolutely loathed him and Danthae was even worse.

I think t
This is book #1 in the series, but it feels like it's a continuation of an older series that I haven't read. And I probably won't go back and read the earlier one now, because I pretty much know what happened in it, given all the backstory that tangled up in everything. So, there was a bad magician who messed up the kingdom and maybe the whole world, but there was a prophecy and a new magician was made, and he fixed things and got married to the woman who pushed him into the job and had a couple ...more
Mrs Darcy
I came at this book with a huge bias. I had read the Kingmaker/Kingbreaker and Godspeaker series prior to reading The Innocent Mage, both of which I greatly enjoyed. Karen Miller builds wonderful fantasy worlds that you can immerse yourself in, with dialogue that is fun to read and full of color. Personally, I love when authors give their characters slang and special curse words, and Karen Miller delivers on this.

So, with my expectation bar set pretty high, I found this book to be lacking. I fe
Levent Mollamustafaoglu
Karen Miller is back to the world of Lur, which we have larned about in the Kingmaker, Kingbreaker series. In this new series called Fisherman's Children, she is describing events that are 10 years after the resolution of the first series. The two peoples of Lur, the Doranen and the Olken are now in a reluctant coexistence in a world leftover from the evil Morg and they think those days are behind them. However, things are not as they seem to be. More evil is lurking in the shadows and Lur is on ...more
Oct 21, 2014 Enzo rated it it was ok
Shelves: magic, fantasy
"The Prodigal Mage" is new series by Karen Miller based on a previous popular Kingmaker, Kingbreaker series. The characters carry over as we get to see what happens after the triumph over Morg. Asher is still the stoic hero and he now has a family. We see the Olken have a happy life but the Earth is not well. It is suffering and it again boils down to Asher to do something for it. But there is were the fun and similarities end. For the most part of the book one can describe the mood as somber to ...more
Domas Družas
So you like stories about magic and heros? You like fantasy worlds that promise adventures? This technically should be the book for you. Well, I thought so too. I was wrong.

Can there be any more misery and pain in one book? That would be my one sentence description. We'll come back to the reasons for that.

From the outset it looks like an easy to read, simple adventure story, where you could escape from your daily troubles. The problem is, that this book likely has more problems than you life.

Abbey Chong
As much as I liked this book there were some downfalls and I nearly stopped reading it half way. Seems like the second book gave the me encouragement to keep reading.

PROS - The different PoVs in each chapter, whether it be from Asher, Rafel, or his Doranen childhood archenemy Arlin, were characterized in their own ways of speaking and seeing the world, and I found this quite amusing, especially when it came to Arlin. There were usually no abrupt time changes (apart from the different sections)
Anne Hamilton
I really liked this fantasy novel with its tortured father/son relationship. A father so controlling in his love for his son, so intent on keeping him safe, that instead of setting him on the path to true independence, he almost forces him into rebellion.

Asher hates his own magegift of weather-working and is intent on keeping his own son's powers within "safe" limits.

But the land of Lur is changing - battered by vile weather, convulsing with tremors, dying - and Asher pours himself out sacrific
Sep 27, 2010 Vanessa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Ten years ago Asher saved Lur from destruction (in THE INNOCENT MAGE and THE AWAKENED MAGE). Now he and his wife Danthe, and their two children Rafe and Dennie, look forward to a more peaceful life, free of prophecy and fear.

No such luck. Of course.

The earth itself has become sick with turmoil--flooding, earthquakes, whirlpools--as a result of hundreds of years of magical manipulations and Asher worries he must use his WeatherWorking magic again to save the land, even at the expense of his own
This novel tracks the young life of the son of Asher, who was the protagonist in the two books Innocent Mage and Awakened Mage. Rafel, Asher's son, is growing up with a sister, Deenie, and both have some odd magic due to their father having both the Doranen and Olken magic in him.

As I begin to write the review I realize I've forgotten half the character's names though I read this fairly recently. I wonder if that means I'm getting old or the characters were not very memorable. Hmm.

The problems
Oct 07, 2009 Jean rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 05, 2014 Flabnbone rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Prodigal Mage is set 10-20 years after the ending of the Kingmaker King-breaker series. The book starts off pretty slow, with long tedious conversations and arguments between characters. But here comes the surprise. About 3/4 way through it is BOOM BOOM BOOM. All this excitement rolls in, you feel like you are blown off your feet. People are dying, the land is dying, and a great evil is rising. So the remainder of the read went by really fast, and now, I have to admit, I didn’t want to at fi ...more
Marshall Bruno
Dec 16, 2011 Marshall Bruno rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting new start to the Kingmaker Kingbreaker series; this time around this is the first of two books for the Fisherman's Children series. Still following the life of Asher for most of the tale, Rafel, his son, takes the lead as the new strong mage.

The blight left by Morg, thought long gone, begins to return and Rafel takes it upon himself to journey over Barl's Mountains with his childhood rival, Arlin. Though they suspect the lands over the mountains would be barren and tainted with Mo
As promised I read the next book in the series. This was hard going, and made even more so by the fact my drink leaked all over it when it was in my bag, doubling the thickness of the pages and making it look as though I had more to read to finish it than I really did.

This book has far too much talking between the characters and not enough action. The characters are always interrupting each other, making me think that Miller hadn't actually worked out what they were going to say next, but just
Adela Bezemer-Cleverley
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Martijn Onderwater
This book never reached a level above average. There is no good explanation in it for the differences between the various kinds of magic, nor does it become clear how this magic is used in every day life.

Also, according to the title it is book One of a series, but I think it should just be book three of the Kingmaker, Kingbreaker series. I really did not get a good feel for Asher's history and missed that a lot.

Then there is the use of speech accents. It is (imho) not enough to change one tiny
Christopher Hurley
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 26, 2013 Karen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Prodigal Mage
I loved this book, having never read the first series I was apprehensive as to whether it would make sense. Would I be caught up in the plot? Would I understand the characters and what was happening? The answer is yes. This book swept me into a world dramatically different to other fantasy/mage-related books I have read - utterly believable and beautifully written. The ending came as a shock - I didn't want it to end, but then I realised there was a sequel so that solved that pr
Jun 27, 2014 Fred rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I really want to give this book four stars because the ending was great and I never saw it coming and the first two books were fantastic but I just can't do it. This is very much a character driven series and while the characters and their development isn't bad, it's not the best that I've ever seen either.

If you liked the first two books in this series (The Innocent Mage and The Awakened Mage) then you'll want to read this as well probably just to keep the series going, but don't get your hopes
Sep 14, 2011 Jesse rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a book that just felt like I was walking in wet cement trying to get to a candy store... I love the previous editions in this story line, and I wanted to know what was going to happen... But it was just so hard to keep moving. The story is bland, predictable, and the characters never really pop like they did in the previous ones. This story took me almost a month to read while the previous books only took me a few days. I just kept being bored. In fact, when I finished it and had the nex ...more
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. Please see this thread for more details.

Also writes as "K.E. Mills"

Lord, do you really want to know?

Oh, all right.

I was born in Vancouver, Canada, and came to Australia with my parents when I was 2. I think. Dad’s an Aussie, Mum’s English, go figure. Talk about Fate and Destiny. But three passports come in hand
More about Karen Miller...

Other Books in the Series

Fisherman's Children (2 books)
  • The Reluctant Mage (Fisherman's Children, #2)

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