A MelanieM Review: Magic Triumphed (The Mages’ Guild Trilogy #3) by Andi Van

Standard

Rating: 5 stars out of 5

The Mages’ Guild Trilogy: Book Three

Zaree Muna’s loyalty to her brother Tasis has taken her to some strange places, but she never could’ve predicted ending up where she now finds herself. The victims of a spell, Tasis and his familiar are unable to wake, leaving Zaree and her allies to face the mad king of Archai on their own. Their quest brings them face-to-face with the Maker herself, and she offers a dire prophecy: they’ll suffer three deaths as they fight for the fate of their world. They’ll lose two people close to them before the final death threatens their chance of victory.

But Zaree isn’t planning to give up—not on Tasis’s dream and not on their future. If that means staring down death, she’s ready. A thousand years is too long to let their struggles end in anything but triumph.

Magic Triumphed (The Mages’ Guild Trilogy #3) by Andi Van is the exactly the right conclusion I was hoping for.  It’s soaring in its imaginative qualities, full of adventure and suspense.  All the characters we have come to know and love are present and fully involved in saving the world in a manner that has us cheering for more.  And Andi Van gives us additional characters barely hinted at but now fully fleshed out, complete with their own relationships, and roles to play.

The only thing missing?  I really wanted to see those giant dogs!

I love a saga that gives me a origin mythology and dragons too.  Be still my heart.  Plus Van leaves room at the end for further, if not sequels, then connected stories and hopefully more series because the world building here is exceptional.  From the Grey Forest elves to the gryphons, to the Maker and all the dragons and Guilds, the continued expansion of the universe that the author is creating throughout the trilogy just cries out for more.

That goes for the relationships here too.  The triad of Emlynn,Jorget, and Nabiha (with baby brother Malik of course) need their story along with Zaree and Reikos, should that be who she ends up with, you never know.  There are so many powerfully conceived characters here who deserve stories all their own in this marvelous universe, empty Guilds that need to live again and a world that still needs so much healing.

Andi Van brought all these beings and this world alive to me.  I sank into it for three stories.  Magic Triumphed was an emotional high, It brought a complicated magically gorgeous saga to a great ending yet made me feel as though another journey could yet still be ready to start.  I hope that Andi Van is listening….

Love fantasy?  Here is a trilogy to dive into and become a part of.  Beautifully written, fantastical creatures and wonderful characters, it will leave you both satisfied and wanting more.  How great is that?

I highly recommend the entire trilogy which should be read in the order is was written.

Cover Art: Tiferet Designs.  Gorgeous cover with the beautiful rendering of Zaree on the cover.  Love it.

Sales Links:  Harmony Ink Press | Amazon | Dreamspinner Press

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 214 pages
Published March 5th 2019 by Harmony Ink Press
ASIN B07LH1CWFM
Edition Language English
Magic Fell
Magic Wept
Magic Triumphed

A MelanieM Review: Magic Fell (The Mages’ Guild Trilogy #1) by Andi Van

Standard

Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Past and present are about to collide, and the world will never be the same.

Magic has been missing from the world for a millennium, and it’s needed now more than ever. It falls to young Tasis Kadara to revive the fabled Mages’ Guild of the Dragon’s Claw. But in a culture where arcane power is forbidden and practitioners are executed, Tasis will have to keep his own aptitude for magic secret. With nothing to direct them besides bizarre dreams and a mysterious cat, Tasis and his sister Zaree undertake a quest to discover the hidden island that was once home to the guild.

Kelwin Tiovolk departs his village following his mentor’s suggestion. As an elf wandering into human civilization, he’s in danger simply for being who he is. A brawl at an inn leads him straight into the path of the young man he’s been dreaming about, and he’s compelled to help Tasis and his sister any way he can. Together, the trio might have a chance of accomplishing their mission—or the attempt might kill them.

I walked backwards into this series with a call to review the final story in this trilogy.  One look at that blurb and I was hooked!  You see I have loved high fantasy and dragons since I can remember, reading the books of Anne McCaffrey and her Dragonriders of Pern or Ursula K. LeGuin and her Wizard of Earthsea.  And there were so many more that started me for my craving for high fantasy and elves, and magic, and lands so wondrous that I wanted to live there and never leave.

Well, Andi Van has written another trilogy that I would have adored finding at that age and actually any age.  This YA high fantasy novel is beautifully written, with great world building and characters that continue to show growth and depth as the story moves through the trilogy arc.  It’s also just fast paced enough that you can feel as though you’ve had a chance to “look around” and enjoy the highlights and jewels of each scene and new character while never fretting that the story is lagging about the need to drive to the all important final narrative destination.

In other words, the plot is beautifully balanced between the need for speed/action and the love of story and character.  Both are looked after and flourish here.

I love, love all the characters here.  The three main characters of half elf Tasis Kadara, his sister Zaree Muna, and full elf Kelwin Tiovolk  each get their own assignments in this trilogy of saving the world.  Tasis has the first installment, when the wait of one thousand years is over and he has a role to play.

We are giving the heartbreaking beginning and the devastation that begins the wait.  Then we go forward in time to Tasis and his sister Zaree.  I won’t go into  spoilers here.  But as I said the world building is gorgeous and so well done.  And the author will continue to expand on it as the story and trilogy continues.  The relationship dynamics between brother and sister,  brother and Kelwin, Kelwyn and the siblings are realistic, connectable, and scenes so remarkable in the interactions with each other that I  just thoroughly enjoyed it.

With regard to any romance or sexual relationship?  Not really. This is truly a YA story, a young YA story because the only romance is an acknowledgement of tender feelings between Kelwin and Tallis, and finally a kiss. And a lovely chaste kiss at that.  One to make you laugh and cheer a bit.  But that’s it.

No here the fantasy story about magic, the search for knowledge and something bigger ….that’s the focus and oh, how it works.

Here be Dragons!  Here’s a story not to be missed!  A trilogy in fact.  Two more reviews to come.  I highly recommend this to all ages and lovers of dragons, magic, elves, and all that includes, magical cats included.  How could I forget him?

Cover Artist: AngstyG.  Beautiful cover.  I adore it.

Sales Links: Barnes & NobleHarmony Ink Press | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 190 pages
Published May 19th 2016 by Harmony Ink Press
ISBN 1634768817 (ISBN13: 9781634768818)
Edition Language English
Series The Mages’ Guild Trilogy

Magic Fell

Magic Wept

Magic Triumphed

Andi Van on Creating a Character and the new release ‘Magic Wept (The Mages’ Guild Trilogy #2) by Andi Van (guest post, excerpt, and giveaway)

Standard

Magic Wept (The Mages’ Guild Trilogy #2)  by Andi Van
Harmony Ink Press
Cover Artist: AngstyG

Sales Links:  Harmony Ink Press | Amazon  |  Dreamspinner Press

 

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Andi Van on tour for Magic Wept, the new release in The Mages’ Guild Trilogy. Welcome, Andi!

♦︎♦︎

 

 

 

Once upon a time (the early 1990s), before the dawn of the internet as we know it, there was a BBS (that’s “Bulletin Board System”, and we had to use actual phone lines to dial into them via modem) in which I ran a role-playing group set in a mages’ guild. My character’s name was Trivintaie, and she was a redheaded mage with a penchant for mischief.

 

Yes, she was THAT Triv. The same Triv that starts off the whole Mages’ Guild Trilogy.

 

When I decided to revive her and write the trilogy, I knew I couldn’t make her the main character. Her time had passed, and too many other people had taken part in creating her guild for it to really be mine. So I set the trilogy a thousand years in the future and gave her world a new hero.

 

What I didn’t expect was that I’d pack it with such a diverse set of characters, most of which reflecting some part of the rainbow. It was completely unintentional, but once I realized it was happening, I was thrilled. One of my goals was to give young adults—and adults not quite so young—characters that maybe they could identify with in a way they might not have been able to before.

 

So I’d like to introduce you all to some of the new characters in the second book of the trilogy, Magic Wept.

But before that, I wanted to let you all know that there is indeed a giveaway. I will be randomly generating three winners on September 30th, all of whom will receive a plush purple cat (because nothing says magic like a K’yerin plushie—Tasis’ familiar is just full of himself enough to agree with that sentiment) and an ebook copy of Magic Wept. You can enter the giveaway at

http://andivan.com/magic-wept-blog-tour/.

And now, on to the characters.

The character I’d like to introduce you to today is Emlynn. Emlynn is a very short giantess.

 

Yeah, I know, it sounds funny. But it’s true.

 

Giants, in the trilogy’s world, are roughly twenty feet tall when they’re adults. Em, who is fully grown, is seven feet tall. This is like having a fully grown person the height of the average toddler. Among the giants, she’s made fun of for her height, and is understandably touchy about it. I hadn’t intended it when I created her, but I’d like to think she serves as a reminder that physical differences shouldn’t matter, and people shouldn’t be judged on them. As the saying goes, it’s what’s inside that counts.

 

As far as what she represents as far as the rainbow is concerned… Well, things are more vague with the elves and giants. Gender absolutely does not matter to them, in terms of attraction, and Em is no different. And while I could absolutely call her bisexual here, I’m actually going to go with pansexual, which I tend to think of as including genders outside of what’s thought of as the standard binary. (Don’t worry, my bisexual friends, your turn is coming.)

 

I adore Emlynn. She’s got a huge heart, and once she’s around people who love her as she is, she absolutely shines.

 

(Fun fact: MamaVan—that would be my mother—LOVED the giants in the first book, and demanded more of them in the second. I’d already planned on that, but I had yet to name Em when she did, so I decided to name Em in her honor. The name Emlynn is actually a mashup of MamaVan’s name.)

 

Like with Jorget, I had a choice of pulling an excerpt for Em from the beginning of the story, or from the end, where she’s gained some confidence. For her, I opted to pull something more from the middle. She’s starting to come into her own, and it’s showing, but she’s also not completely sure of herself.

 

***

Excerpt

 

“I have my strength,” Emlynn said, ignoring Reikos’s comment about Daro. “And a few spells, though the ones I know are basic and likely not much help in a fight, not unless I can get close enough to blind someone with light.”

 

“I can cast fireballs,” Jorget said, sounding rather pleased with himself.

 

“From the ceiling,” Emlynn said under her breath, though she gave Jorget a bit of a grin when she did to let him know she was teasing. Apparently he got the message, because he stuck his tongue out at her.

 

“Yeah, let’s not try any levitation spells,” Kelwin said with a grimace. “And Jorget, please, for the love of the Maker, do not try to teach Tasis a fireball spell. He just put that guild back together. I’d rather it didn’t get burned down already.”

 

Jorget made a noise of protest, but Reikos cut through it by addressing Emlynn. “You said something about light?”

 

“Yes,” the giantess said with a nod. “It’s more convenient than having to carry a torch or a candle.”

 

“Are you okay being up front with me? Because we’re going to need that light.” Emlynn nodded again, and Reikos continued. “Good. I want Jorget and Kelwin in the middle.” He looked at Kelwin and gave him an apologetic smile. “I know you can fight if you need to, but I’d rather not give Tasis an excuse to tear me apart later.”

 

“It’s fine,” Kelwin said, having expected it. He was fairly useless if they came across a serious threat anyway, and this way he could keep an eye on Jorget. The guy was definitely talented, from what he could tell, but he had no idea how to focus. Some time on the isle with Triv and the others would take care of that, but that would have to come after their foray into the depths of the mountain.

 

There was a flutter of wings, and Bahz landed on Emlynn’s shoulder. The bird had to be heavy, and his talons had to be gripping the giantess painfully, but she merely turned her head with a look of vague surprise on her face. Did the girl ever show strong emotion? I know the way, Bahz said. It’s safest if I’m up front as well.

 

“Of course,” Reikos allowed. “Well, then. Let’s go exploring.”

 

“We’re all going to die,” Jorget muttered to Kelwin as they found their place in the middle of the small group.

 

Kelwin tried to swallow down his laugh with only moderate success. “So optimistic,” he said. “We’ll get out of it alive. If we don’t, Tasis will resurrect me just to kill me himself.”

 

“Necromancy is forbidden,” Emlynn reminded him from the front of the group, Bahz still riding on her shoulder, quite at home there.

About Magic Wept


Jorget has no surname, no blood kin, and no hope of using his magical ability while he remains at Archai Castle, where the mad king reigns. With magic still outlawed, every experiment he performs could cost him his life. So when his mentor, the royal priest Denekk, is ordered to send Jorget on a journey to find a magical weapon, the young man jumps at the chance to prove himself. What he doesn’t realize is that things are never as simple as they seem.

Kelwin Tiovolk has settled into life in the Mages’ Guild of the Dragon’s Claw with his beloved, guild leader Tasis Kadara. But when word arrives that the king is searching for something to destroy the guild, he knows he has to leave behind the comfort of his new home to save what Tasis worked so hard to rebuild.

With enemies around every corner, Jorget and Kelwin need to pull off a miracle in order to save the guild. Luckily, they’re more than ready to stand strong together and keep what’s precious to them safe.

 

About the Author

 

Andi Van is a foul-mouthed troublemaker who lives near San Diego with a baseball bat that’s forever being used for things other than baseball, and a fondness for rum and caffeine (though not necessarily together).

Andi is fluent in three languages (English, sarcasm, and profanity), and takes pride in a highly developed—if somewhat bizarre—sense of humor.

Social media info:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/DefiantAndi
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/defiantandi