World Without End

{4.5/5} “Do you know what concerns me most about these gentlemen? Oh, not what you might think. I do not believe them bad. They are not even particularly greedy or selfish, for men in their station. No, what concerns me is the narrowness of their vision. It is a problem with men driven by the need to accomplish. They focus on the task at hand to the exclusion of all else — even to the next bend. Never do they turn their gaze back.”

The mages have all died out and their knowledge died with them — Tristam’s uncle Erasmus worked for one of the last of them. Tristam is a naturalist, an empiricist, with no knowledge of magic whatsoever. Yet as he embarks on the adventure of a lifetime he has a growing suspicion that magic is following him.

The king is already beyond elderly, but a plant called kingfoil is keeping him alive. The problem is the palace is running out of its supply — the seeds aren’t growing new plants like they used to. An expedition is mounted to procure some more kingfoil. Tristam finds himself on the voyage, as is the beguiling Duchess of Morland.

World Without End by Sean Russell was published in 1995. It’s the first part of the duology Moontide and Magic Rise.

Much of the book takes place at sea. If you some knowledge of sailing terminology, you might enjoy this part a bit more than I did.

Tristam gradually finds out that different people want different things of him, and he gradually finds out that magic has not been left in the past. It’s a great book, and I’m eager to find out what happens in the sequel.

The book doesn’t come to a conclusion — you’ll have to read the sequel for that.

I read Russell’s books Initiate Brother and Gatherer of Clouds a few years ago and loved them.

This entry was posted on Monday, March 24th, 2014 at 7:42 pm and is filed under Reviews of books. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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