June 26, 2007
Sandry’s Book: Book 1 of the Circle of Magic quartet by Tamora Pierce
I have long enjoyed Tamora Pierce’s engaging and valiant heroines and rich, multilayered kingdom of Tortall and surrounding lands. So I was curious to see Tammy’s foray into another world- of Emelan and many other lands bordering the Pebbled Sea- a crossroads of cultures. In this world we meet not one, but four young protagonists from different social backgrounds who’s unique magical abilities are discovered by Niko Goldeye, a wandering mage.
Sandrilene fa Toren- or Sandry is great-niece of Duke Vedris, ruler of Emelan but her noble blood doesn’t save her from being orphaned or being seized by pirates- but her weaving magic does.
Briar Moss is a thief who lives by his wits on the streets- when he is captured on criminal charges he is given the chance at freedom by Niko on the condition that he come to Winding Circle Temple for training. And besides, of what use to a pickpocket is an odd knack for making plants grow?
Trisana Chandler has been shuffled from relative to the next of her merchant family- because somehow, storms and lightning seem to follow her wherever she goes, and that’s just not good for business. Even the priests and magicians of Broken Circle Temple don’t know what to do with her- but Niko does.
Daja Kisubo is perhaps the most unfortunate- as the sole survivor of a shipwreck, she is branded trangshi– outcast by her Trader people. Her connection to metal and the forge saves her- but she’s not sure if living as trangshi is worth it.
Most of the book is introducing the characters and showing their initial development and training of their magical abilities. With clashing personalities and cultures, the four don’t always get along, but slowly they find their place at the temple and as an earthquake looms, they combine their powers to become a Circle of Magic. So begins the quartet.