Return to site

Review: The End of Magic by Mark Stay

· Reviews
broken image

The End of Magic • Mark Stay • ★★★★★

Although I don't read a lot of fantasy, I thought I'd give this one a try. I've enjoyed Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, and a little bit of other stuff here and there. But The End of Magic took me by surprise at how relatable Rosheen is, and, to a lesser extent, Sander. They are two mages forced by fate to opposite sides of a war to essentially rule the known world.

Haldor Frang is definitely an antagonist I despised out of the gate. As with Stay's recent co-written book Back to Reality (which I loved), the writing is excellent: vivid images, clear voice, and well-rounded characters.

The body count is high in this book, and I found the deaths, especially early on, are difficult to get through. By the time the climactic scenes come, I found myself almost numb to the bloodshed. Yes, there are moments of silliness and levity, but Stay keeps the stakes high at all times, and leaves just enough light at the end of the tunnel.

I might not recommend this to new readers of the genre, particularly if they're not used to the more Tarantino-esque fantasy books, but The End of Magic has a compelling narrative, as well as a strong authorial voice.