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The Charmed Sphere (Lost Continent, #1)
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The Charmed Sphere (Lost Continent #1)

3.60  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,160 Ratings  ·  97 Reviews

Once Chime had been the most promising mage in the land, feted and celebrated for her potential and future role in the kingdom. Then Iris, her young competitor, made a stunning leap in skill and turned Chime's world upside down.

Now no longer the most powerful, no longer promised to a prince-- and still unable to harness her magic properly-- Chime was set adrift. As was t

Paperback, 471 pages
Published October 29th 2004 by Luna Books (first published February 2004)
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LUNA Books
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 01, 2009 Wealhtheow rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Terrible. Lines like, "She quirked one of her perfect eyebrows at him" and "Telli laughed, her melodic voice chiming like bells," and of course, "willowy curves." God help us all. Some of the most cliched, boring piece of fantasy I have ever laughed at.
Lisa (Harmonybites)
Jul 06, 2010 Lisa (Harmonybites) rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No One
The cover claimed Asaro was a Nebula Award winner and her biography that she was a physicist. Given that, I had high expectations for this book--I hoped for great writing and a fresh take on fantasy. I was disappointed; I never found the novel better than mediocre.

The characters, plot and style came across to me as pure romance aisle--and that's not a compliment with me. Even the names of the female protagonist and her love were eye-rolling: Chime Headwind and Muller Startower Heptacorn Dawnfie
Carrie Vaughn
This book has an interesting concept and was a long read. It could have used a better editor, however. There were discrepancies in the timeline, issues with name changes, some issues with incorrect usages and spellings that a spellcheck wouldn't have caught, but a good beta reader might have. Editing would have helped and I wouldn't have been pulled as quickly out of the story. I think that was really what bothered me most.

The concept of the shapes and colours forming spells was interesting. It
Nov 19, 2011 Karen rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This fantasy novel confused me a bit - the corniness of certain elements (the way that magic works via colors and shapes, the character names, the ridiculous military formations, the absurd coincidences, etc) led me to think this surely must be a children's books, but the romance arc definitely didn't feel like a children's book. Despite the many flaws I did somehow get drawn in - so although I was rolling my eyes quite a bit, I still wanted to read on.
Mary: Harry Dresden's Love Slave
I picked this up awhile ago and couldn't get into it at all. I kept it because I had 3 others in the series. I'm glad I did because the 2nd time I picked it up, I had a hard time putting it down. I don't normally read straight fantasy so maybe that's why I didn't get into it right away. But it turned out to be an enjoyable read and now I want to read more by Catherine Asaro.
intriguing. plus, i was in love with the book cover. =)
Well, that was different. I certainly wasn't expecting a fantasy romance, with a touch of math/science thrown in.

Picked this up because the author will be at an event I'm attending in the nearish future and I'd never read any of her work. Blurbs here and there say she's got the chops in science: Harvard and UCLa in physics and chemistry, and deep into molecudyne (look it up if you don't know what it is) research. She also is a dancer, both jazz and ballet. (And married to a astrophysicist at NA
Feb 06, 2011 Pkirby rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 05, 2008 Jessi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book has a very compelling story. The good characters had so much depth. I really felt I could get inside their heads. They all had some complex that made them feel more human. I also loved the way magic is used in the story. It was so unique to me. I have never heard of using shapes and colors for magic as the author describes. The author also has nice writing style that is easy to understand, especially after reading a book where a third of the words were old English. That is very helpful ...more
Sara / "Svenna"
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 06, 2008 Mary-Beth rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, romance
This was a decent book with an unusual premise for the rules of magic spells used by the characters. Shape mages use perfect shapes, like pyramids, spheres and cubes to cast spells. Different colours of shapes indicate different types of spells.

Something odd about the novel was the way in which time flew. Often months and years pass in which nothing of note occurs. This is probably realistic, but given the characters are supposed to be experiencing crises over these periods of time, it removes a
Aug 17, 2011 Angela rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I found The Charmed Sphere in my favorite second hand book store and I couldn't put it down. When I went to look for more like it, I was delighted to find it was a series and I lucked out to have started with the first one. I've loved all of them. I thought I would tire of the plots from book to book but they differ so to the point that even though they are similar in nature, they are still fresh and new and intriguing to read. I was unable to put them book down till the last page.

I love the fa
May 17, 2015 Mjhancock rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Aronsdale is a country known for its mages, those who are able to harness the power of symmetrical shapes, and express that power through the color suited to them. Chime Headwind, however, has no interest in leaving her family's orchard to go to the castle and learn to be a mage, and much less in marrying the crown prince Muller Dawnfield, nephew to the king--who isn't particularly interested in marrying someone he never met either, nor in ruling Aronsdale. But with Iris, an even more powerful m ...more
Nov 19, 2014 Miryam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I actually really liked this series. It was fun without taking itself too seriously. Simple and cute. Really.
HOWEVER, in the later books it becomes much more graphically sexual which turned me off. I don't read them anymore, but if you're ok with the sex, this series is really enjoyable!
Bonnie O'malley
Aug 12, 2014 Bonnie O'malley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first book by Catherine Asaro her characters were likeable and real and the story just developed so well i couldn't read fast enough and went on to read the next three in the series. I highly recommend this series and i enjoy her style of writing it.
Heidi Hunter
Feb 01, 2014 Heidi Hunter rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful book. I have read it twice and I know I will be able to read it many more. It has action and romance and magic and mystery. I love this series and I love Catherine Asaro
Mar 21, 2014 Liberty rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Nauseatingly bad dialogue. The whole mage power being based on rainbow colors and geometric shapes made it seem like a failed pilot for a children's television series.
Sep 26, 2007 Meghan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Very light reading. O.k. plot, but I wasn't fond of the shallowness of the characters. It definitely took some determination to finish the book.
Mar 04, 2008 Kate rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, romance
Very silly, trashy brain candy. Fun if you don't feel like thinking much, but very recycled and very juvenile author voice.
May 10, 2007 Amy rated it it was ok
Shelves: mom
If you don't mind pregnancy as a plot device, this series isn't a bad read.
Erika Worley
There are aspects to this book that seem a little tacked on or unformed, but I really enjoyed the main characters and their romances and interactions with each other. If you read fantasy in part to see how the characters get through the magical times, this is a good one. The characters are given individual focus while your expectations are also flipped upside down. You realize at some point that the character you have become the most invested in would probably seem like something of an antagonis ...more
Nov 03, 2015 Eskana rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Well, this book is certainly a mixed bag. On one hand, I found the descriptions- especially how the author described the magic system, which was fairly complicated- to be very involving and interesting. Every time I opened this book, I fell right in, and readjusting to the real world always took some time. So it had that going for it. It was also based on the short story "Moonglow", featured in the "Charmed Destinies" collection, which I enjoyed.

However, that being said, there is a lot against t
It's a, haha, charming and fluffy book. Catherine Asaro adapted it from a novella that focuses on different characters so the first half suffers from some awkward parts where she tries to make this larger story fit into the smaller one she created previously.

The novella is told from Iris's viewpoint, and Chime and Muller are not very well presented. This book makes Chime and Muller the main protagonists and fleshes them out into people you like, which means that Asaro has to come up with some st
Apr 23, 2016 Sandra rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned
Abandoned at 20%

This reads very Young Adult–young Young Adult. The writing is juvenile and's just basic. Chime is your cardboard cut-out I-don't-want-to-be-the-most-powerful-mage footstamper who is also amazingly beautiful. Muller (I can't with these names) on the other hand makes no sense, he's like 3 different personalities thrown together in a messy pile.

I'd seen this book for years around Amazon, and decided to give it a shot. My mistake.
Dec 16, 2014 Karen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 14, 2007 Debbie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2004, fantasy, dead-tree
This is the first full-length novel by the author I've read. I've been meaning to read other books by Asaro, and have read stories by her and have loved them but for some reason, this is the first book of her's I've picked up. The beginning was a bit slow, but I think that was because I had read "Moonglow" in Charmed Destinies which was basically retelling the first part of the book from different perspectives. I was interesting, though, to see that Chime had a different side than that presented ...more
Katie Stewart
This is actually a re-read for me. I read this book when it first came out in 2004, over 10 years ago. I loved it then, so when I saw it pop up on my suggested reading list, I decided to re-read it. Unfortunately, I did not enjoy it nearly as much. I found the story line to be somewhat basic: a kingdom made vulnerable by the death of a king and led by a reluctant heir is invaded. There were high points, however. The way the author developed magic in her world was quite interesting. I liked how s ...more
Nov 02, 2015 Elar rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks
Great possibilities - chromatic and geometrical magic, conflict between countries and new talent rising. What came out was persons who do not know how to interact with other people, characters are very insecure. It was ok, but I give series an other try as it was quite light reading.
Nov 25, 2015 Nancy rated it really liked it
With all the reviews on here I was not expecting much from this book. I was extremely happy to be wrong. I love this book. I cared about the characters. I want to buy this book. I cannot wait to read the next one.
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The author of more than twenty-five books, Catherine Asaro is acclaimed for her Ruby Dynasty series, which combines adventure, science, romance and fast-paced action. Her novel The Quantum Rose won the Nebula Award, as did her novella “The Spacetime Pool.” Among her many other distinctions, she is a multiple winner of the AnLab from Analog magazine a
More about Catherine Asaro...

Other Books in the Series

Lost Continent (5 books)
  • The Misted Cliffs (Lost Continent, #2)
  • The Dawn Star (Lost Continent, #3)
  • The Fire Opal (Lost Continent, #4)
  • The Night Bird (Lost Continent #5)

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