Mei-Lu's Reviews > Feast of Souls
Feast of Souls (The Magister Trilogy, #1)
by C.S. Friedman
by C.S. Friedman
Jul 26, 11
Read in July, 2011
** spoiler alert ** I bought this book at the Borders sale because I'd heard C.S. Friedman was a good writer and I liked the cover. I had absolutely no idea what to expect (especially since the cover gives so little about the plot away). Truthfully, it's hard to write about this book without giving away spoilers, which is why my review is hidden. In the Magister Trilogy, magic is powered by life force. Witches use their own life force, burning out and dying young. Magisters do not, but how they manage is a great mystery and secret that only magisters know the truth of. I'm sure you can guess the truth as easily as I did, which is that magisters are immortal because they drain the life force of someone else (called a consort) in order to fuel their power. They never meet their consort, and are not able to choose their own source. Those who are being drained suffer from a disease called "The Wasting", in which apparently able-bodied types suddenly become weak. I've suffered from CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome) for almost four years now and the symptoms of CFS and the Wasting are eerily close. In fact, my friend (and fellow sufferer)'s mother frequently comments that it is though "someone is stealing your life away". So this book struck an unexpectedly personal note for me. But it's worth reading for anyone who likes a good story (you don't have to have CFS to enjoy it!). C.S. Friedman is a really good writer, and it is a pleasure to read her books - the characters, the situations, are so well-drawn and well-conceived. I thought this book was going to be a fairly straight-forward coming of age story for the main character, Kamala, but then it took a left turn and became much more interesting, much more mysterious and, frankly, just a little bit heartbreaking. This series definitely has a darkness to it. And it's a real, human darkness (rather than a dichotomous good vs evil). The main characters all have varying shades of gray, which makes them so much more realistic. Yes, there are heros in this world, but they aren't necessarily who we're rooting for and they don't always win. Or if they do win, they are questionable victories rather than outright triumphs. I'm deep into the second book already and am so hooked that I can't wait for the third book to come out... I hope it's sooner rather than later!
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