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The Lost Gate

(Mither Mages #1)

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  23,593 ratings  ·  2,360 reviews

Danny North knew from early childhood that his family was different, and that he was different from them.  While his cousins were learning how to create the things that commoners called fairies, ghosts, golems, trolls, werewolves, and other such miracles that were the heritage of the North family, Danny worried that he would never show a talent, never form an outself.


Hardcover, 379 pages
Published January 4th 2011 by Tor Books
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Lindsay I noticed that, too. I guess I assumed that Stone would have called Eric's cell (assuming he had one, and that Stone knew his number) and asked what…moreI noticed that, too. I guess I assumed that Stone would have called Eric's cell (assuming he had one, and that Stone knew his number) and asked what the heck was going on when he and Danny didn't show up back at Stone's place. And that Eric, with his irrepressible need to brag, would have told Stone everything as dramatically as possible.
That's the explanation I came up with because nothing more was really said about it in the first book, and I can't imagine a small detail like this being carried over into the second or third book with any kind of meaning.
But yeah, it does seem like a careless plot hole that could have been easily fixed, and also doesn't have much bearing on the story in full. It's surprising and lame to get one of these in a Card book. (less)

Community Reviews

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Jan 09, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: crap, young-adult, blog
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 14, 2012 rated it liked it
Oh Orson Scott Card, your issues with sex are visible from SPACE.
Dec 16, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, fiction, arcs
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy.

Ever since the first time I read ENDER’S GAME, Orson Scott Card had a way of grabbing my attention and pulling me out of my normal genre preferences. In recent years, while I would still pick up his titles as they caught my eye, nothing had been able to recapture that initial attraction. Reading THE LOST GATE was like rediscovering a high school crush and falling in love all over again. I laughed, I read quotes out loud, and stayed up to all hours of t
Aug 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
I honestly didn't know what to expect with this one, but I was very pleasantly surprised to find a magic system that incorporates every myth of gods and creates families out of them, weak with time but always hoping for the potential to get much, much more powerful.

That only happens with Gate magic.

Enter Danny, learning that he can bend space and time and learning much about himself as he leaves his scary folks and their community to become a thief. It's a perfect field for someone who can jump
One of the most interesting magic-mythical systems I've ever read. It explains all our myths in a really cool way. Super world(s) set up & some truly great characters. The main character was far from the best - not bad, but nothing special. Some of the supporting cast were just awesome, actually overshadowed the rest. Card's women in this book were better than the men. They had more range & were far more interesting. I LOVED the queen. What a tough, twisty woman!

Unfortunately, he over-e
Dec 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio, 2011
3.5 Stars

Good in parts, a bit boring in others, but overall a pretty dang cool magic system and I really think the books to come will be even better. This was mostly a set-up for the rest of the series, especially after listening to the afterword.
Nina Bradley
Feb 02, 2011 rated it did not like it
I'm definitely in the minority here, but I don't enjoy reading Orson Scott Card. He can think up a good story, sure. The problem is with the way he conveys the story. He is the classic example of telling rather than SHOWING. He doesn't let the reader figure anything out. There is too much dialogue and not enough descriptive writing. Reading this book was like being handcuffed to the main character's brain and having to listen to every inane thing he ever thought or said. There were also some par ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
Well...maybe I should make my guide line into a rule. You see I broke my "guide line" not to pick up "first books" anymore until later volumes of "series" or "trilogies" or "quad-ilogies", or "deca-ilogies" ("decaologies"?) or whatever "they" were going to be got published. This book came out in January this year and I got it from the library last week. Big mistake, especially if Mr. Card does a Martin or worse a Jordan.

I have read a lot of mediocre books of late, volumes I didn't hate but coul
Alisa Kester
Jan 08, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
I quite liked the *other* Orson Scott Card books I've read, and this one sounded wonderful in the front cover. Unfortunately, I didn't like it much at all. The main character, Danny, was annoying (as were almost all the other characters), the magic system was vastly over-explained (good gad, there were *endless* conversations about it), and I was bored. Bored, bored, bored. By the last half, I was skimming every section with Danny's viewpoint.

Why I finished the whole book, and why I gave it two
Jan 05, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya-fantasy-urban
Starts great, but doesn't hold up

What went wrong? Two things I think:

First, I didn't buy the tree-man's behavior. (view spoiler)

Second, and this I just couldn't get past, our main character h
Oct 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
¿Por qué dejé yo de leer a Card hace 4 años, vamos a ver?

Si tenemos en cuenta que leí el primero suyo (El juego de Ender) en el 92, eso nos da más de 20 años disfrutando con Card, disfrutando mucho. Un total de 39 libros plagados de notas de “10”, “9” o notables altos.

El problema que tuve fue que Hijos de la Mente (Ender IV) no me gustó. Ciudad de Basilica (el final de la saga de Alvin Maker), menos. Y para colmo releí Esperanza del Venado (craso error en mi caso las re-lecturas) y ahí llegó el
Jon Parkinson
Jan 13, 2011 rated it it was ok
Interesting world, but I didn't find the story-telling to be very compelling. Card gets way too bogged down in explaining, over-explaining, and explaining yet again the details of how things work. Also, as in most of his latest fiction, all of his characters sound the same.

There's also a scene that was entirely uncalled for, involving a sex-crazed 20-something girl jumping the 12 year old protagonist. It seemed like one of those scenes Hollywood throws in to get more viewers--you know, the scene
Whitley Birks
Aug 30, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: almost-good
I wanted to like this book. I really did. It started out so good that I couldn't put it down at bedtime. It had interesting mysteries and characters, and the main protagonist was actually intelligent and figuring things out on his own.

And then, about halfway through the book, it's like the author just gave up. There was no story anymore, just pages upon pages upon pages of characters sitting around and talking. It wasn't even interesting talking. They were trying to figure out how Danny's magic
Jan 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: e-books, read-2011
4 star novel with an unbelievably awesome magic system and world building. This is a first in a new series by Orson Scott Card and the first time that I have read him in years. I adore the Alvin Maker series and consider it one of the best Urban Fantasy series ever written. This novel is about a teenage boy named Danny. He is a little difficult to like and empathize with, as he is an incredibly smart ass and self centered youth, that may be a little too smart for his own good. The world building ...more
Mar 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This is the first in a trilogy by Scott Orson Card and although it took me about a chapter or two to really get into the pacing and wonder of the novel I must admit I ended it with enthusiasm. The story takes place between two worlds, ours and a lost world that has been closed to us for 1400 years. Lost Gate provides a delightful explanation of ghosts, gods, werewolfs and other mythical and supernatural creatures. He even has an explanation for how our own Judeo Christian religions came into bei ...more
This isn't what I expected at all. There were things I liked and disliked about this book.

The story was great, the world building was unique and the magic system was super cool.

My problem was with the characters and the dialogue. Most of the characters were pretty unlikeable and the few I liked weren't relatable at all. Many of the characters were very crude and crass and I found the dialogue and character interactions uncomfortable.

I'm not sure if I'll carry on with this series. I want to see
Katieb (MundieMoms)
2.5 stars

The Lost Gate is the first book I've read by Orson Scott Card. I've heard phenomenal things about his story telling and now I can understand why. Orson kept me engaged with his story with his detailed mythology and world building. I felt like I was apart of the world while reading about Danny's journey. I'll admit, I didn't feel a connection to his main character through out the whole story and at times some scenes were not at all what I was expecting, and little graphic, taking too muc
Feb 14, 2011 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Serious fans of Orson Scott Card
When I finished this, I realized I felt almost identically about this book as I did about the last OSC book I had read, Seventh Son, which was also a first in a series. Here are the bits of that review that apply:
Orson Scott Card is a very good storyteller, so even at his worst, his books are still worth reading. That being said, this entire novel felt like a ... prologue. It set up a lot of characters, a lot of history, and a good deal of how this alternative universe works, but not much happen
Jul 26, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: scifi-fantasy
I am of mixed minds about this book. It was a very fast and overall enjoyable read in the sci-fi/fantasy genre. I've read other Orson Scott Card books (loved Ender's Game and some of the sequels) and this had many of the same characteristics - precocious boy (perhaps too precocious) coming into his own to save the world with his unique skills. While the plots move along quickly (there are two alternating plots in different worlds that naturally collide at the end),the big climax feels rushed and ...more
Jul 22, 2016 rated it did not like it
I dare anyone to find an Orson Scott Card book that doesn't talk about sexual molestation or naked boys or slutty girls or pedophilia or plain ol' weird ass situations; and I'm not just talking figuratively.
Of course I know what it means to 'moon' someone, but Mr. Card took it to the next level by describing, in cringe worthy detail, what it means to 'star' someone. Yuck. I don't find toilet humour funny, and I'm still not sure what the point was in including not only this description, but othe
Malcolm Everett
Jul 02, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: audiobooks, reviewed
I honestly didn’t want to read The Lost Gate, given the mediocre reviews, but I was desperate to find an available audiobook and eager to finally read my first Orson Scott Card novel, despite his anti-LGBTQ leanings. The afterword by the author about the writing of the book was the best part. It was interesting to me that the idea kernel for this book took 33 years to pop into a full-fledged work. But I think this one should’ve stayed in the expired ideas pile.

By the way, this book is not approp
Apr 05, 2011 rated it did not like it
The ratings for this book seem high, so I know that I am in the minority on this one. I've read 2 other books by Orson Scott Card and enjoyed both of them. They've had good imaginative plots and make a fun story, which is why I picked this book to listen with my 12-year old son.

The Good: The story is based on ancient gods who still exist on earth with diminished powers and live mostly hidden from the rest of humanity. They are waiting for a gate mage to be born and create a Great Gate which will
Dec 12, 2011 rated it did not like it
I admit that I initially found the book entertaining and engrossing. But, unfortunately, Card has the tendency to push the sexual content envelope in some of his novels--and did so here when I was about halfway into the book. I have reached a point in my life where no matter how good of a read the book might be, it is not worth completing if it contains "crap". In this case, it was all the more ridiculous because the incident did not appear germane to the plot whatsoever.

Aside from the "crap", I
So I've been listening to the Mither Mages books in conjunction with the Hex Hall series - I am listening to these ones at work and the Hex Hall books in my car, in case it seems like I've got an earplug from each story in each ear, playing at the same time! I'm not that crazy - and they're good bookends to each other, mirroring and contrasting in a lot of fun ways. The stories are similar: kid realizes s/he is magical and more powerful than originally thought and then quests and troubles happen ...more
Feb 17, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy, escape
This book is nerdy in a bad way. The first sign of nerdiness is the premise: the mythological gods were real people but with amazing magical powers, and they live on in a diminished state, awaiting the birth of a gate mage, one with the power to transport them back to their faraway mystical home. I actually thought that sounded pretty cool, but I am a nerd. Louise (also a nerd) thought it sounded pretty lame, and I can see where she's coming from: recycled mythological ideas grafted onto a YA bi ...more
Nov 21, 2010 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Sarah Poon, Adam Heine
As always, what really sparkles in Card's books is his sarcastic and witty dialog. The rhythm of his words as his characters insult (with great affection) each other is always a highlight to me. That said, I enjoyed the book although I felt that a lot of it was a set-up for the later books. It's understandable since there is a lot of worldbuilding going on and a magic system that takes time to explain.

That's the other thing. I felt as if I could see the workings behind Card's thinking as he was
J. Lawrence
Jan 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A slick magic system, complete with a mythological feel, in today's world. I really enjoyed this one. The main character reminded me a lot of Ender, which was a treat because I enjoyed those books too. I have already ordered The Gate Thief. Enjoy!
Dec 09, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
In the fictional universe of Orson Scott Card’s latest novel The Lost Gate, what we think of as gods were actually people from another planet (called Westil), who arrived here through magical “Gates.” Passing back and forth through these Gates gave people with minor or latent magical powers huge boosts to their skills, resulting in god-like abilities — and as a result, they were often thought of as actual gods and entered Earth’s mythology. Some time in the 7th century, the trickster Loki closed ...more
Feb 11, 2011 rated it it was ok
“The Lost Gate” by Orson Scott Card is the first novel in what is likely to be a series of Mithermage novels. As Card explains in the Afterword, he considers this to be his best magic system, but a system itself does not make a good novel. Where this novel lacks, and where his series with Ender and Alvin succeeded, is in the formation of the story as well as good characters. The main character of this book, Danny, doesn’t measure up to those two predecessors, and the story itself seems to have m ...more
Apr 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
Percy Jackson and Magnus Chase meet Deadpool.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
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  • Gracias Thanks
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Orson Scott Card is the author of the novels Ender's Game, Ender's Shadow, and Speaker for the Dead, which are widely read by adults and younger readers, and are increasingly used in schools.
Besides these and other science fiction novels, Card writes contemporary fantasy (Magic Street, Enchantment, Lost Boys), biblical novels (Stone Tables, Rachel and Leah), the American frontier fantasy series Th

Other books in the series

Mither Mages (3 books)
  • The Gate Thief (Mither Mages, #2)
  • Gatefather (Mither Mages #3)
“Eko brushed a tear from her eye, and Immo jeered at her, but father held up a hand. "Never mock a tender heart," he said.” 6 likes
“Might-have-beens are a bitch.” 4 likes
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