Rowan's Reviews > Magic Steps

Magic Steps by Tamora Pierce
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Jun 06, 09

bookshelves: fantasy, ya, fiction
Read in June, 2009

I completely take back anything I ever said about the "Circle" books being for younger readers than Tammy's Tortall books. There's no sex in this one, but drugs and bloody, "on-screen" violence are major plot elements.

Set four years after the first series, the four young mages have parted company, three of them leaving Winding Circle Temple with their teachers to travel and learn more about the world. Sandry has stayed behind to look after her uncle, Duke Vedris, who has recently suffered a heart attack.

The story contains two plotlines: The primary plot involves the murders of a family of merchants, while the secondary plot deals with Sandry's discovery of a young mage, Pasco Acalon, whose magic manifests itself through dance. As his discoverer, Sandry is required to teach the boy the rudiments of magic, at the same time that she attempts to assist the Provost's Guard in tracking down the assassins and the mage who helps them. Pasco doesn't take part in the primary plot until the very end of the book, and when he does, he is more of a tool than a character thinking and acting for himself.

The first time I read this book, I was bored by it, and now I am not sure why. The only reason I can think is that, once again, Tammy has departed from familiar territory, and only the characters of Sandry, the Duke and Lark carry over from the previous series. The other members of the Circle are mentioned, but not seen or heard from at all. The story also takes place over the space of about a week. Still, not a bad story, and I am actually looking forward to reading the next one, which I've never opened before.
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