Since moving to Sydney, I buy most of my books from Gertrude & Alice – a gorgeous bookstore by Bondi beach whose food menu is as appetising as its book selection. However, when I stopped by recently to buy one of the final novels I have yet to read from the BBC Top 100 – they didn’t have any of the ones I needed in stock, and so I visited Dymocks – the city centre book shop down the road from where I work. Not too dissimilar from the much loved Watersones back in the UK, Dymocks has an incredible array of books under every genre imaginable, and a bookseller’s top 100 which featured Raymond E Feist’s Magician – one of the last five books I had left to read.
First published in 1982, Magician is the first book of the Riftwar Saga, set in the imagined world of Midkemia. It tells the tale of orphan boy Pug, who spent his childhood dreaming of becoming a warrior like his friend Tomas, but lacks the physical strength and skills at arms. When a ceremony takes place in which Pug and his peers will be chosen for the different apprenticeships, Pug suffers the ultimate humiliation when he is the only one not chosen by any master. But as he stands alone and in shame in the middle of the great courtyard, Kulgan, the Duke’s court magician choses Pug. And thus his career in magic begins.
When the peace of the Kingdom is destroyed as mysterious invaders swarm the land, Pug and Tomas are swept up in a conflict that will change their lives forever.
The finest in fantasy fiction, Magician has it all: a compelling plot, a creative cast of characters and a strong writing style that grips its reader until the very end.