Tanya Talwar's Reviews > The Necromancer

The Necromancer by Michael Scott
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Oct 19, 10

Read in September, 2010

** spoiler alert ** The Necromancer
Book Review

This book takes place over the course of two days, and once again, Michael Scott delivers a masterpiece. The first three books are amazing reads as well, but this particular book adds twists into this story as never before. The first three books are about training the twins in the elemental magics and fleeing from Dee and Machiavelli; however this book gets darker and reveals more burdening secrets about the world.

This part of the series makes Sophie and Josh even more certain that they should trust no one but each other. However, after the unexpected turning events at the end (Josh being possessed by Mars and walking out on Sophie and the Flamels), they even begin to doubt each other. When Aoife of the Shadows is first introduced in the beginning, I find that when she explains the relationship between herself and her sister, Scathach, it very much resembles Sophie and Josh’s. They feel each other’s pain, one thinks their older than the other, etc.; a typical twin relationship.

As a reader, I feel this connection that Sophie is getting with Aoife as well. When I read this part in the beginning of the book when Sophie and Aoife kind of bond, I find myself thinking: Aoife and Scathach have a fall-out, and their relationship if much like Sophie and Josh’s. Is this Scott’s way of somewhat foreshadowing that Sophie and Josh will have some sort of disagreement or argument as well? Does it mean that they will end up going their separate ways, but still care about each other and help each other when one is in need?

There are many ways that one could interpret the plot in this book, but for me the climax is when Josh is raising Coatlicue from her shadow realm. It is such an intense moment, when everyone is running around trying to figure out what’s going on. I think that the ending of this particular book is also the climax of the whole series, because it is completely unexpected and changes almost the whole plot line, and, not to mention, changes the characters quite a bit as well.

Scott introduces various new characters in this book, for example Virginia Dare, Dare is the type of person that is usually independent and neutral. Why is she taking sides with Dee? I know that Dee promised her that she could rule the world with him, but how many others have trusted the English Magician and met their downfall? She should know better than to trust him.

I’ve noticed, however, that after this book, I’ve started to like Machiavelli more and more. Even though he is a villain in this story, Scott makes him have some good moral, and at least an admirable personality. Making a villain is not hard, almost anyone can do it, but creating a villain that has some aspects that you admire, and then think If only he was fighting for the good side, they would be so much better off!, is much, much more immensely difficult.

Another interesting aspect Michael Scott put into these series, and especially this book, is that the reader ends up often questioning the good side as well. There isn't exactly a clear distinction between good and bad. There is a slight distinction, but what I’ve noticed personally as a reader is that the characters aren't described as good or bad, but as characters all utterly convinced of the rightness of what they are doing. Nobody reading this book doubts Nicholas and Perenelle Flamel are on "the good side", but The Necromancer challenges that conviction, and challenges it for other characters as well, especially Josh.

One of the very interesting things that Scott does is that every single one of his characters can be traced back in mythology. He has done his research well and portrayed each of these “gods” and mythological creatures amazingly in aspect to the story. I became so interested in all of the characters, that afterward, I even searched some of the biographies of these characters on the internet! I absolutely cannot wait to read more about all of these characters. The characterisation is for me one of the strongest point of this series, after the plot and story-telling!

This book finally gets at the turning point and climax of the overall story, where the characters find them questioning themselves and you find yourselves questioning them. This book makes you laugh, cry, and long for the next book in the series, the Warlock!
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