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(The Black Mage #2)

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  11,599 ratings  ·  817 reviews
She survived a trial year at the Academy of Magic, but that was the easy part…

Now sixteen-year-old Ryiah is an apprentice of Combat, her school’s most notorious faction. When she finishes, she will be a war mage, but in order to do so, she has to survive four years traveling across Jerar, training with a master she hates, her old nemesis, Priscilla, and Prince Darren,
Kindle Edition, 390 pages
Published January 24th 2017 by Rachel E. Carter (first published February 17th 2015)
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Average rating 4.01  · 
Rating details
 ·  11,599 ratings  ·  817 reviews

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Rachel E. Carter
Oct 02, 2014 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: written-by-me



*** PLEASE NOTE: The ebook editions of this series are only available through Amazon, however you can still purchase the paperback/hardcover/audiobook versions at all retailers. If you would like to continue reading the series as ebook, you can purchase the book/s on Amazon and either: 1) install the Kindle app on your e-reader, or 2) EMAIL RACHEL ( a copy of your receipt and she’ll send/>***/>LINKS/>PINTEREST
Dec 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, fantasy
Since Goodreads doesn't allow us to rate more than 5 stars,then 5 stars it is.But in my heart,Apprentice deserves all the stars in the sky,and maybe some more.

Since Goodreads doesn't allow us to rate more than 5 stars,then 5 stars it is.But in my heart,Apprentice deserves all the stars in the sky,and maybe some more.

First Year was a great book,a really pleasant surprise that showed us what a talented writer Rachel E. Carter is.And yet Apprentice was even better,a shiny gem among the other YA fantasy books that kept me up all night and forced me to eat my feelings because it
“Someday,Ry,you are going to realize who Darren really is.He’s a prince,and he’s only going to break your heart.”

The second instalment of the Black Mage series follows Ry's apprenticeship in order to become a Combat mage,the physical and emotional trials she has to endure and her evolution from a lowborn girl that was bullied to a powerful,strong woman who despite the hardships proved to everyone her value.Of course there was a certain non-heir that made her life miserable but didn't seem to let her go,and a curly-haired kind boy who was doomed from the start because let's face it,dark and forbidden princes are always more alluring.Plus,it's Darren,duh!

Before I start babbling about the element of romance in this novel I have to praise everything else!I absolutely adored the glimpses we got into the country of Jerar,its structure and the politics and their relationships with their neighbors!I could literally picture the forests,the port,the desert and the rebels in the mines,the battles and the dead,I could smell the salt of the sea and fresh pines and taste the metallic tang of blood,feel the rough walls pressing against my back and my muscles going sore from the training!Everything was so realistic and vivid,I was sucked in the book with such a force that it took me way too long to adjust to real life again!The mock battles were my favorite parts,my stomach dropped to the floor every single time,the surprises and the agony left me breathless and shaking.It was a unique experience!
But that was the easy part...
“We couldn’t be friends.
We couldn’t be enemies.
So what were we?”

The relationship between Ry and Darren was a crazy roller-coaster,one moment I was grinning like a fool and the other I felt the sting of betrayal in the core of my being and my eyes watering from grief and frustration!And there is also the matter of the love triangle...I do not like love triangles but I have to admit in this case it was fitting.I didn't always like Ry's decisions towards her love life,but I understood her.There was this frustrating prince her heart craved against all reason,a boy who could never be hers,so she tried to move on.I liked Ian,but like I said,he didn't stand a chance.Not when a single touch from Darren could set Ry on fire,not when he haunted her every thought.
“You always do this.You swoop in and ruin my life and then you run away leaving me to pick up the pieces!Haven't you done enough?”

He also broke mine.I can still hear my heart shattering,and when it was pulled back together it shattered again.Take the solstice ball for example.At first I was so happy,lightheaded and squealing and laughing and then,I gaped in shock and agony and tasted ashes in my mouth.This kept happening and happening,joy and then sorrow,hope and then disappointment,laughter and then tears,love and then hatred.And although during this book you hurt me a lot Rachel,
Aj the Ravenous Reader

Oh well, there is no point in hiding it.

The first book was awesome but this one is:

This book has everything in a book I am looking for. It has the perfect dose of every element. No event was underdone; no characterization was over pushed. The scenes elicited so many intense but worthy emotions from me. I laughed, I cried, I mourned, I swooned a lot, I worried so much ,I loved and hated Darren and hated and loved him again! Every

I loved the first book sooo much, it nearly kills me now to give this sequel only 3 stars, but I can’t overlook some things that either disappointed or annoyed me ! :(

The world-building and the plot :
Well, I was okay with the first book not having much of a plot and being only about training and character’s development, but I was convinced it was just a way to introduce the series and that things were finally going to take off in book 2, but unfort/>
Cece ❀Rants, Raves &Reviews❀
This book took everything I loved about the first book, and shot it. Shot it in the goddamn face.

RIP hopes and dreams

Remember Ryiah, the independent character who focused on training? Now its just love triangle, love triangle, random fight scene, triangle!!


“You aren't afraid of making the wrong one, Ry, it's the fact that you want to make the wrong one.”
~~I hate you! I want you! But don't want to! But i cant stop~~

Ben Alderson
Oct 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
"Magic and romance clash in this epic follow up to First Year."

WOW. This series is just WOW.
I am loving this world, the characters. THE MAGIC. I mean, I've never read a book with 'MAGES' in. AND NOW I WANT TO READ THEM ALL!

Loved this
Claudia Ramírez
Jul 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017
3.5 stars :)
Melissa (Ever So Mela)
First Year Book 1 review
Candidate Book 3 review
Last Stand Book 4 review

...Well color me flipping surprised.

In all honesty I was expecting to hate this or at least severely dislike it. I've had this for a week or so but dove into other books to actually get in a good mood cause lately I've been a nitpicking bireview
Mar 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
first read: March 19-21, 2015
first reread: July 3-5, 2015
second reread: February 3-?, 2017

"My dear, each one of us is a hero. The irony, of course, is that most will never receive the title."

JULY 2015: My feelings have definitely not changed in a negative way towards this book. I loved it the first time around, and I loved it even more on this reread. The world R.E.C. has created is truly beautiful, and I can't be more excited than I already am for book three.

3.5 stars

I received a free copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

I have to give Carter this: that woman knows how to keep me reading.

The first chapter excluded, I read the entire book in a day and a morning. Even though I had some issues with the book, I could not put it down. I had to know what happened next, if Ryiah finally grew some brain cells (the answer was usually no), if Ryiah and Darren would get together already (also usually no). It’s an engaging story/>I
Katerina Kondrenko
3 out of 10

Ревью в моем блоге/This review on my blog
Living A Thousand Lives
(please use Chrome/Yandex browser or Android/IOS to see the page; otherwise, spoiler-tags I use to make my post compact may not work)

The Red Paintings – You're Not One Of Them
3 out of 10

Ревью в моем блоге/This review on my blog
Living A Thousand Lives (please use Chrome/Yandex browser or Android/IOS to see the page; otherwise, spoiler-tags I use to make my post compact may not work)

The Red Paintings – You're Not One Of Them
Freelance Whales – Follow Through
Jamie O'Neal – To be with you

Genre: high-fantasy, YA
Stuff: magic, academy, politics, looming war
Fail: plot-structure, romance
POV: 1st person, female
Love-Geometry: hard

"We couldn't be friends. We couldn't be enemies. So what were we?"

Nope. This installment didn't change my opinion about the series. I'm still bored and don't get the romance, only now the situation is even worse: we have horrible time-jumps. And I won't tired of repeating myself on this topic! If you want to show readers how everything began but plan to lead your story far in the future in a matter of one book, then start in the future and use flashbacks! That helps not to tear the thread and not to ruin timeline of events and proper characters development. When you do otherwise, you end up with a bunch of bitty scenes, a lot of blank spots, and heroes with stuck personalities. It doesn't feel like a story, it feels like a draft-collection.

So, yes, as you might already notice, Apprentice is all about missing pieces. One book, 300+ pages, and 4 (!) years of MCs' lives. No, you won't learn anything new. Everything will be very repetitive: same ships, same problems, same schemes. A lesson or two, a year competition, a ball, a visit to palace, a lesson or two, a year competition... Yeah, you got it right. 4 circles around the same chain of events. There were good moments during group battles, but even them grew old in the end.

The romance! Oh God, that was painfully stupid and far-stretched. A million break-ups, a million I-love-yous. Darren acted like a self-centered prick and made Ryiah to finish her courting with Ian, Ian had been too patient and sweet for Ryiah and her fickle heart, Ryiah had no brains at all. But the ending made everything even worse! When you get that Darren did hurt Ryiah on purpose, 'cause he "had no choice"and only thus "could reach his goals" and blah-blah-blah, you want to kill this idiotic bastard and to scream "MANIPULATIONS FOR THE PLOT'S SAKE!" at the top of your lungs. He could say Ry about his plans. It were the King and the Crown Prince who mustn't know of Darren's intentions, not Ryiah. So, yeah, that was stupid. unnecessary and bleh. Plus the King was rather lazy. He needed money for the war, but it was his son who found a real good dowry, after all.

Plus cinnamon! Every kiss of Darren tastes like cinnamon. Or pine. Or HOME. So Darren loves to chew cinnamon, needles and... houses. Nice.

Oh, and can we talk about Ry and Darren the Bastard as of main characters? Did you notice that these two are perfect Mary and Marty You-Already-Know-Their-Last-Names? The best of the best of the best! So powerful and smart and WOWOWOWOWOW. And it seems like Darren loves Ryiah only for her special skills. While she loves him back for his... em... muscles, I guess?

I don't know whether I'll finish the third book or not, 'cause at this moment I'm curious only about the older prince. So far he didn't use his evil potential (barks but no bites), so maybe he'll change his tactics and finally goes darken.

The Black Mage (Черный маг):
— Non-Heir (Ненаследный принц) #0.5/4
First Year (Первогодка) #1/4
Apprentice (Подмастерье) #2/4
— Candidate (Кандидат) #3/4
— Last Stand (Последний рубеж) #4/4
Dec 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
My 100th book of the year had to be this 🙄.

Took me like 2 months to complete and I read 13 other books in-between smh. A waste
Dannii Elle
Jun 30, 2017 rated it liked it
Actual rating 3.5 stars.

This is the second instalment in the Black Mage series. Ryiah and Alex, twins from a lowborn family, are entering into their second year of training to become magical mages. After the trials accompanying their first year their continued studies promise to be just as full of drama and complications.

I had stated in my review of the first book that I am absolute trash for magical boarding school settings, and this hasn't yet changed. I was initially disap
May 25, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Gosh I feel like the black sheep here. But in my defence I really did want to like this book.

After reading First Year, I was really excited to read Apprentice. My hopes were high! In fact Apprentice started out well but after a few chapters it dwindled down badly.

While unlike First Year, the world building in this book is better, it lacks in all the departments that First Year stood out in viz. Characters, character development, romance and training. Apprentice was half sappy romance and half

I finally managed to write this review! While painting the kitchen I finally got a break, lol... Here I go. Hope to write down everything. There's a lot to say!

" Your future, dear Ryah,
has just begun"

Did you like First Year ??? Yes? Well then you're going to love Apprentice !!!! Didn't like much First year? Well you should read this one! You'll love it or at least like it! Didn't read First Year!? You absolutely have to... not only because it's a really good read but because it gets you to Apprentice!!!

Again I don't feel like wr
Cee (The Mistress Case)
Review can also be found at The Mistress Case.

PART 1. “When Words Fail . . . Trust in Lightning” – A Less Than Three Confession by Cee

It’s true that when you come out of a storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in.

Ryiah and Darren aren’t the same people.

They’re so much more.

Only the bravest can love— and these two have the courage to love when all odds are against them.

Their love is lightning.



Review can also be found at The Mistress Case.

PART 1. “When Words Fail . . . Trust in Lightning” – A Less Than Three Confession by Cee

It’s true that when you come out of a storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in.

Ryiah and Darren aren’t the same people.

They’re so much more.

Only the bravest can love— and these two have the courage to love when all odds are against them.

Their love is lightning.






A second later there was a bright flash of yellow and a stark white display as lightning crashed in the air above. Only this time it hadn’t come from me.”

“Well done, Darren! What did you use to cast it?”

Darren’s eyes found mine. “Something I don’t regret.”

With his unexpected words, he struck me with lightning. I am 100% sure of it. I am electrified with feels, with love, with hope.

I love lightning. I love rain. I love storms. I love the chaos of their story.

Signed, Cee

PART 2. “When There is a Struggle. . . Trust No One.” – A Hopeless Study by Cee

There are things I like and there are things I don’t like. Then there is “the middle man.”

The Middle Man is the love triangle. I detest love triangles. This book’s love triangle highlights Ry’s theatrics and the reason why I dread a love-shape-anything. However, particularly for Apprentice, the element ended up in the struggle between like and dislike. The drama of the romance did pinch my nerves once in a while and eventually I got tired of the love/hate/push/pull between the three characters, but overall, their romance was a good and sensible touch to the story. It was necessary to show the suffering of the characters, the breaking of friendships, the loss of hopes and dreams, moving on from the past, holding onto a possible future, the good, the bad, how one can go through so much and still be ruled by love at the end of the day. Do you understand what I’m saying? The love triangle actually means something in the book. It has a purpose. It is not solely there to make the heroine loveable and attractive like so many YA books these days. Rachel has truly earned my trust and respect. Not only for how she handles the romance, but for Ry— a strong and ambitious heroine who isn’t always in control of her emotions but sure as hell know what they’re worth— and Darren— a hero who sees worth other than his own.

I like that this book is fast-paced, BUT it is too fast. Four years(?) are jam-packed into 300 pages?! Don’t get me wrong. The book is still awesome. It is action-packed with mock battles and fights with enemies and yet it’s not enough to satisfy and intrigued me. I’m constantly confused about the amount of passing time and the characters’ ages. A timeline of some sort at the beginning of every chapter or something would’ve been useful. Believe me, it felt like I read three books in one.

Non-spoil-ish: The ending— it’s possible I’m still in shock. First of all, the character death killed me. Secondly, that thing and that thing and the other thing. OMG. I CAN’T BELIEVE IT. I’M STILL HAPPY ABOUT IT.

I was fighting between rating Apprentice 4 stars or 5 stars and decided on 4.5.

4.5 Lightning Strikes!

I even created a special "lightning rating system" specifically for this series. (I was too lazy to cut the last lightning in half. Sue me.)

Signed, Cee.
Jun 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ok honestly this book had a few things I was a little ???? about, but I really loved it and I'm just going to give it 5 stars because I'm weak and really it's actually amazing regardless.

Ok so I think to lay out what the plot is would be a good start. So basically, this series (not this book) follows a girl named Ryiah and she lives in a world where anyone in any social status in society can go to this magic school and try out. If they get it, they have 1 year sort of "probation peri
Muse-ic ♬
Well, that was intense!

I plowed through that thing! I was so hooked and in love! With the book and certain people *coughyouknowwhoyouarecough*

Before I get into the specifics, I just wanted to say that this is so worth the read, especially if you've read the first. If you've read the first one, then get on with this one already (I don't know why it took me so long to jump on this installement). If you haven't read the first one.......I don't know what to tell you except GET ON WITH IT!!

(view spoiler) ...more
Natalie (Never trust a duck)
And Never Trust a Duck Pictures presents the stages of Natalie as she read this here novel.

The WHAT moments:

The THANK YA LAWD moments:


The DENIAL moments:

The SWEET RELIEF moments:
Anna (Enchanted by YA)
***I received the ARC ebook free as a review copy from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review***

Just give me a second to stop dancing round my room and grinning like a fool… okay, I’ve calmed enough to write this review, though the grin is going nowhere anytime soon!

This book is more than I could have hoped for, with all the awesomeness from the first book there isn’t a doubt in my mind that it deserves all the stars in the sky for a rating. The second it was on my phone, I was reading it and when I ha
I have a lot of things that I hated in this book, and a lot of thing that I loved so I'm rounding up the rating to three stars for that.


-The fucking stupid love triangle. I mean, (view spoiler). It wasn't necessary to the story at all.
-I don't know if it is only me, but the story in this book happens in four years, and I feelthat.
Anja H.
May 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing

“People make mistakes all the time – some of us just are in more of a position to leave an impact when we do.”

This book absolutely destroyed me. AND I LOVED EVERY MINUTE OF IT.
The one thing I keep asking myself is... Why the hell aren't these books more popular?!?
They include everything I've ever asked for and more: lots of adventure, non-stop action, an intense romance, a kickass heroine... I'm officially hooked! That being said, I'm off to read the next one right this instant!
Sophia Sardothien
Mar 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm torn between giving this a 3 or 4 stars

But since the things I love in this book is more than the ones I hate. 4 stars it is.

After reading the second novel I'm still not a fan of the protagonist, she really does annoy me.

But I absolutely love her relationship with Darren. OH HE IS SUCH A SWOON-WORTHY MALE LEAD

Overall I can't say I absolutely love this book, but I do find it extremely intriguing and entertaining.

I honestly can't wait any longer for the next one, is such a long
Brittain *Needs a Nap and a Drink*

I usually try to wait a day or so after finishing a book before I start writing a review. I like to let it sink in and process a bit before I start forming distinct opinions.

This one couldn't wait.

I always approach second books in a series with a healthy amount of trepidation. Remember Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest? That's why. It's easy to stall out, delay action and use the second book as a bridge to the third book and it's conclus
Avy  (Book Looney) ❄️

Guys... Guys...I'm speechless. I don't even want to write a review for First Year cause I'm afraid I won't do it justice. Rachel Carter is one of the best writers out there. First Year and Apprentice were super fast paced, and usually I hate that in books because I like to know what's happening every moment lol but Rachel just wrote in a way that it worked.

Darren and Ryiah, power couple of the year. Their relationsh

"I told you not to trust a wolf," he continued. His words dripped like honeyed venom. "Because it would only ever want to break you." Darren let out a small, harsh laugh. "Haven't you figured it out yet? I'm the wolf, Ryiah. I guess what I really should have told you was to never trust a prince, but that's not quite as memorable."


What's that I hear? Oh, sounds like Darren swooping in and capturing my heart once again!

Seriously, I get really gushy when it comes to these books. It'sCARTER
This book was quite longer than the previous, First Year, and goes through the rest of the characters' training, so that spans about... four years. Damn son. I have to say, despite some elements I liked that First Year didn't have, there's also a lot of stuff that I got really tired of, real quick.
Our main character, Ryiah, is doing pretty well at school. The rigorous course from First Year really prepared her and her friends, so there is less detail on their coursework and the amount of studyi
Jul 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
So I've been smiling like an idiot ever since I finished the book - because Wow, what an ending!
The characters were amazing and at times unpredictable, so I couldn't stop turning the pages. Darren and Ryiah were so intense with enough complications in their love story to put Geum Jan Di and Gu Jun Pyo to shame :)
Ryiah is undoubtedly one of my favourite female characters now, I really appreciate that her success as her mage comes from her determination and her ability to acknowledge her mi
Caitlin L
Jan 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After 2 days of endless reading, I have FINALLY finished this incredible book! I have to say, Ryiah and Darren sure made me want to throw my phone across the room multiple times. I am so super duper honored to be reading this book before it comes out! I will surely write this book review asap on my blog!
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Rachel E. Carter is the USA Today bestselling author of The Black Mage, a YA fantasy series about magic, love, and war -with future projects to come. She hoards coffee and has a weakness for villains and Mr. Darcy love interests.

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Other books in the series

The Black Mage (4 books)
  • First Year (The Black Mage, #1)
  • Candidate (The Black Mage, #3)
  • Last Stand (The Black Mage, #4)
“People make mistakes all the time – some of us just are in more of a position to leave an impact when we do.” 27 likes
“Well done, Darren!” Master Byron was full of praise for the prince. “What did you use to cast it?”
Darren’s eyes found mine. “Something I don’t regret.”
More quotes…