Saturday, June 17, 2017

Book Review: Battle Magic by Tamora Pierce

Battle Magic
Author: Tamora Pierce
Series: Circle Reforged (Book 3)
Publication: Scholastic Press; 1st edition (September 24, 2013)

Description: On their way to the first Circle temple in Gyongxi, mages Briar, Rosethorn, and Evvy pay a visit to the emperor's summer palace. Although treated like royalty when they first arrive, the mages soon discover that the emperor plans to invade Gyongxi, posing a fatal threat to the home temple of the Living Circle religion. Accompanied by one of the emperor's prize captives, the three mages rush to Gyongxi to warn its citizens of the impending attack. With the imperials hot on their trail, Briar, Rosethorn, and Evvy must quickly help the country prepare for battle. But even with the help of new allies, will their combined forces be enough to fight the imperial army and win the war?

My Thoughts: Rosethorn, Briar, and Briar's student Evvy having visited Gyongxe and gotten to know the young god-king are now traveling to Yanjing as guests of the emperor. While everything looks lovely around the emperor, they quickly come to realize that he is evil and wants to conquer all the lands around him. His next target is Gyongxe. Briar and Evvy free one of the emperor's slaves who happens to be a prince from another country and they try to make their way to Gyongxe with the emperor's minions hunting them.

Rosethorn is given a mission that requires her to take some sacred objects of her religion to a place were they can be kept safe from the emperor. She is required to do this alone despite Briar and Evvy lobbying to go with her.

Meanwhile, Briar and Evvy along with Parahan join with fighters including Parahan's twin sister as they try to get word to the god-king of the emperor's plans.

This story had a lot of battles and required all of our characters to dig deep inside themselves. Evvy is captured by the emperor's forces and tortured to tell what she knows about where Parahan, Rosethorn, and Briar are. The scenes of her torture are harrowing. Her torture does lead to her being rescued by the heart of the mountain who provides healing and a place of refuge. Meanwhile, Rosethorn and Briar are feeling guilt at leaving Evvy in what should have been a safe place and both are mourning her death.

I thought the world building in this story was excellent. I enjoyed watching our heroes show that their gifts could make them formidable opponents for a greedy emperor. All of the characters were well-developed and engaging.

This is an excellent fantasy series.

Favorite Quote:
Rosethorn held her hands palm up and looked at the sky. Gracious Mila, help me explain how close they came to the most horrible kind of death, she begged her goddess. Give them knowledge of the world before the world kills them. Give me patience, before I buy two barrels and ship them home that way. I beg you, my goddess, guide me before I do something dreadful and box their ears. 
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

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