Lucille's Reviews > Emperor Mage

Emperor Mage by Tamora Pierce
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Jul 07, 11

bookshelves: kickass-heroines, fantasy, young-adult
Read in July, 2011

After the treason and attempted invasion that occured in Wolf-Speaker, tensions are running high between Tortall and Carthak. King Jon knows that the Carthaki have attacked his land and plotted against him, but he doesn't have enough proof, and the Carthaki army and navy far outnumbers his. There are also growing concerns about the barrier between the human and immortal realms. The immortals are coming through more and more every day, and the humans aren't prepared to deal with them.
Daine is sent to Carthak with other ambassadors to attend the peace talks with Emperor Ozorne. Daine is also tasked with a special job. The emperor's one weakness is his love for his birds, and they are growing ill. He doesn't understand the sickness and he needs Daine's gift with animals to heal them. Numair is also part of the envoy to Carthak, upon questionable terms. Numair studied magic at the University there and then left for Tortall. He was branded a traitor and sentenced to death. Reluctantly, his old friend and competitor, Emperor Ozorne, lifted the death sentence from him, but Numair is on dangerous turf while in the Emperor's domain.
Daine is soon to learn that things are not as they seem. Carthak is a strange land to her. It is a land where slavery is acceptable, a concept that she cannot understand. SHe is able to shift into various animal forms, and the thought of a cage terrifies her. She befriends the Emperor's nephew and begins to learn more about the situation in Carthak and the danger that the nation is in.
The Gods are angry, to say the least. Carthak has abandoned the temples and the people are forbidden to pay tribute to the once beloved Gods. To prevent disaster, things must change abruptly. Once more, it comes down to Daine and her unusual abilities to set things right and prevent disaster. There are also very small traces of romance building between Daine and Numair as their relationship slowly evolves from that of teacher-pupil to friends to something more.
Overall, this is an adventure filled book. It is interesting to see how Daine is growing up and learning more about the political side of the world while still holding on to her primal instincts. As a heroine, I like her a lot. As always, Tamora Pierce delivers an enjoyable story.
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