A Novel in the Imager Portfolio
Scholar: A Novel in the Imager Portfolio. Tor. Nov. 2011. c.576p. ISBN 9780765329554. $27.99. FANTASY
The scholar Quaeryt, friend of young King Bhayar, ruler of Telaryn, accepts a royal mission to journey to the land of Tilbor, conquered by Bhayar's father ten years earlier, to assess the possibility of reducing the occupation forces. Concealing the fact that he is also an imager, a mage who can create mental images and endow them with material being, Quaeryt weathers pirates and a shipwreck on his journey to Tilbor. Once there, he faces more subtle political dangers as his suspicions grow concerning a conspiracy that could throw Telaryn into chaos. Set in the time before the events of the first book of the "Imager Portfolio" (Imager; Imager's Challenge; Imager's Intrigue), Modesitt's latest addition to his fantasy saga focuses on the complex character of its hero, an unlikely combination of serious scholar and, when need be, ruthless opponent. The author excels in creating worlds that are believable down to the last detail and characters whose vitality expresses itself in actions that have resounding consequences.
VERDICT Fans of the author's "Recluce" novels and the works of Robert Jordan, Terry Goodkind, and Raymond E. Feist should enjoy the elaborate world-building and believable characterizations.
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