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Sunday, May 26, 2013

Book Review: Ravenspell Book 1: Of Mice and Magic by David Farland

This is a fun story of magic, adventure and a hint of romance.  This book is still free on Amazon.

Benjamin Ravenspell wants a pet, but his parents don't.  So Ben behaves responsibly until his parents reluctantly consent to let him babysit his friend's lizard.  When his mother lets him buy a mouse, he doesn't realize that's not as a pet but as food for the lizard.  With a heavy heart, he hangs the mouse over the lizard's cage.

What Ben doesn't know--for that matter, Amber, the mouse he's holding over the cage, doesn't know, either--is that Amber is a powerful mage and wishes that Ben knew what it was like to be a mouse.  They fall into the cage with the very hungry lizard....

Ben tries to speak to his parents but they don't understand mouse language.  In fact, they try to vacuum him up....

Ben and Amber go outside, dodge the neighbor's cat, and learn about mouse wizardry.  Ben is Amber's battery.  So long as he's around, she's powerful.  She finds she's attracted to Ben even though the feeling isn't mutual. Ben boldly promises to liberate the pet shop mice in the world in exchange to be human again.  Amber agrees, but when it comes down to actually carrying through with her promise, the magic tears her apart because she really wants to keep Ben around.

Amber is dying, so Ben bargains with an evil bat, Nightwing, to be its companion, its tick, its familiar.  He's gotten more than he bargained for as Nightwing forces animals to be amalgamated and fight one another in order to build the perfect army to destroy Rufus the Flycatcher, the benign wizard bullfrog.

The novel's magic is inventive and fun.  Farland shows us that people (or animals) aren't always what they seem to be--even people we think we know.  A good lazy afternoon read with sequels available.  The author does need help supporting his son who was in an accident and who is recovering, but their hospital bills are astronomical.  Try it, and buy the others to support them.

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