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The Oathbound Wizard (2004)

The Oathbound Wizard (2004)
3.8 of 5 Votes: 3
0345461177 (ISBN13: 9780345461179)
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The Oathbound Wizard (2004)
The Oathbound Wizard (2004)

About book: Originally published on my blog here in September 1999.Sequel to Her Majesty's Wizard, The Oathbound Wizard continues the story of student Matt after he has been thrust into another world in which he is a powerful magician. The best thing about the first book was the idea of a fantasy novel which took medieval Catholicism seriously, and that is carried over in a diluted form into The Oathbound Wizard. (The power of faith is somewhat lessened, probably to improve the verisimilitude of the plot.)Matt has been unable to marry his beloved Queen Alisande of Merovence, because she cannot feel it is right for her country for her to marry one not of noble blood. (Because of the idea of the divine appointment of rulers, she usually instinctively knows the right course of action to take for the benefit of her people. Though she does feel that it would be right to marry Matt, her scruples derive from the suspicion that her love for him is overcoming her supernatural knowledge.) After three years, Matt is very frustrated, and in a moment of temper swears an oath that he will overthrow the evil usurping sorcerer holding the throne of the neighbouring kingdom of Ibile. Meaning this as a figure of speech to express his emotion, he has forgotten the spiritual power of words in this world, and so he is committed to a quest.In this second novel, Stasheff is not quite so careful about the background as in Her Majesty's Wizard. He manages, for example, to get the names of the kings of England wrong. This is in discussion with Robin Hood, conjured up from another parallel universe, and I suspect that the reason that the king following Richard and John is named Edward rather than Henry is related to his background reading on the Robin Hood legend. The tales, now traditionally associated with Richard I's crusading, apparently developed during the reign of Edward III, and it may be that Stasheff assumed he followed the earlier kings.As the novelty of the first in the series has worn off, the second does not seem nearly as good.

Forgotten pun-fun from quick minds. Original friends and foes - live flying stone gargoyles with metal teeth. Matt Mantrell 20s, Lord High Wizard, angry at love Queen Alisande over waiting three years to set wedding date, vows to "kick that Ibilian monster-monarch off his throne or die trying" p 4, in this world where words have power. Spells can surprise when he improvises, bumbling experiments with memorized literature passages, popular songs, even ad jingles, where lesser traditionalists rely on research of previous incantations. In Ibile, wands focus and direct to one target, skip boring quasi-science of sound p 138+. Rhymes do not need to be spoken, as long as thoughts in rhyme, end with command "imperative .. just because everyone knew it, didn't always mean it was true" p 10. In ripoffs, not always clear to me. May be more fun for reader who recognizes original - usually I skip spells. Typos/inconsistencies? Gordogrosso is the one who should not be named aloud, cannot even be spelled, forsooth, but he does off and on, without rebuke or result. Matt suspects knight to "renege on all his promises as soon as he was out of sight .. But they could still hear him, chanting a Latin hymn, in a loud, off-key baritone" p 148. Again Aesop's thorn in lion claw fable turns foe to friend. Dracogriff Narlh is crossbreed "And getting crosser" p 39. Cyclops Fadecourt has courtly speech. (view spoiler)[ Heir to throne finds other eye in throne room/ lab of villain, restores already handsome face to perfect. (hide spoiler)]
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