Throwback Thursday: The Charmed Sphere by Catherine Asaro

The Charmed Sphere (Lost Continent, #1)

Paperback, 473 pages
Published July 1st 2005 by Luna Books

I’ve been wanting to re-read this series for some time now, and I was finally able to make the time to read the first book.  Actually, I purchased the ebook/audio package from Amazon since it was around $5 for both, and I started listening to the book on Audible before moving to the ebook and finishing it with the physical book.

Here’s an abbreviated history of how I came to initially love this series.  I judged the book by its beautiful cover, looked for it at every used bookstore until I found it a year later (limited money as an early teen), read it, loved it, discovered there were more with similarly amazing art, purchased and devoured them as they came out (with money from my part-time job), and last year, I contacted the author to acquire signed bookplates!

So, I discovered two things during my re-read.  1) I still love the characters, world, and magic system that Asaro built.  2) There was definitely a pacing issue throughout.  This was the largest of the 5 book series, and I believe the other 4 books were edited to be more concise.  But, that was the only issue I had really.  The magic system is based on shapes and hues of colors, which lent itself to the reader paying more attention to descriptions.  I think the magic was the best part of this first book, which does feel like an introduction to the magic system and the main country of focus.

I do hope that I can find time to continue re-reading this series  because I enjoy visiting this world.  And if the author ever has a chance to write more stories in this wonderful world or with these characters, me (and my money) will be there waiting.

Summary:

Once Chime had been the most promising mage in the land, feted and celebrated for her potential and future role in the kingdom. Then Iris, her young competitor, made a stunning leap in skill and turned Chime’s world upside down.

Now no longer the most powerful, no longer promised to a prince– and still unable to harness her magic properly– Chime was set adrift. As was the new king’s cousin– and former heir– Lord Muller. Yet when the neighboring kingdom threatened war, Muller and Chime were tasked with uncovering the plot. Both were flawed, yet unwilling to accept a lesser destiny than they had once known. Could this quest be the opportunity for redemption– or would it lead them to their deaths?

Award-winning author Catherine Asaro, creator of The Skolian Empire, creates her first full-length fantasy novel in a world rich with magic and power. Originally a glimpse of the kingdom of Aronsdale in “Moonglow” from the Charmed Destinies collection.

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