read online eBook Od MagicAuthor Patricia A. McKillip –

McKillip is a pleasure to read She writes these little books that are like fairy tales than they are anything else They are finely drawn, beautifully detailed, perfect stories that make you think of the beautiful miniatures of another era She borrows themes from old fairy tales and weaves them together into something surprising and new She doesn t write with the depth or character development of someone like Guy Gavriel Kay, but they re not meant to While he writes novels that are like stunning wall sized or dome sized mosaics, she writes gorgeous masterpieces that fit in a locket Od s Magic does not disappoint It tells the story of a broken hearted gardener, a confused wizard, a proud wizard, a rebellious princess, an enigmatic wizard s daughter, an Earth goddess, an apprentice, and a loyal city guard And it s just so much fun to read And comforting, like your favorite story from childhood read at bedtime. Od Magic starts off appealingly as the titular Od, a mysterious and magical giantess surrounded by animals, appears before an isolated young man named Brenden to recruit him to be the gardener at the magic school in the royal city of Kelior There Brenden finds a weird plant in the greenhouse that no one else can figure out, either And so the story begins.Many of the descriptions in this book are just gorgeous Tyramin s traveling carnival, the mysteries of the snowy north, and Od herself, are fascinating and absorbing There s a strain of feminism running throughout that s both striking and refreshing in its unobtrusiveness Unfortunately, it s all downhill from there There are a couple of interesting personalities in the very large cast of characters, but quite a few of them are hard to differentiate from each other because we aren t given a lot of room to get to know them in the crowd On top of that, aside from Od and Mistral, we don t get a good idea of what they look like dark hair isn t enough for the reader to distinguish one woman from another when almost every woman has dark hair For this reason, sometimes I lost track of who had met whom, or where we d left them in their last scene.There s a capital T Theme running through the book, and every single major character s motivation centers around it Princess Sulys with her buttons and threads magic, Tyramin s daughter Mistral, Brenden the Gardener, Yar the wizard, Valoren the king s counselor everyone Even some of the scenery is a metaphor for it One of the characters spells out the Theme in a speech to cap things off at the end of the book, just in case you missed the point.Aside from the aforementioned absorbing descriptions, the whole thing felt stiff, passionless, and over considered to me, and as a result it was a slow, slow haul Let s not even get into the romance in the book, which was so lightly sketched that it was almost invisible The pedantic ending was just a miserable way to ice a mostly flavorless cake This was my first McKillip Despite my lukewarm response to Od Magic, I m looking forward to reading of her work There was promise of better things here that I would be genuinely happy to see fulfilled in another book 2 1 2 stars, rounded up cause it s Friday.Buddy read with Mimi We ve had a pretty good record so far, this is the first one that missed the mark McKillip is one of my most favorite authors I find myself hoarding her books, waiting for the perfect time to read them because I know they re going to be perfect I know this makes no sense, and I will likely die with wonderful books unread due to this horrible tendency McKillip s books remind me of neo medieval bands Qntal, Faun, etc They are deeply rooted in tradition, but unmistakably new They are pure without being innocent, complex without being muddy.That said, some of her books are very similar to each other Reading Od Magic, in particular, I really felt like I was reading about many of the same characters portrayed in the last book I read by her, The Bards of Bone Plain Sure, it was a different story, and a different setting but at times it was almost as if her standard characters had been dropped into a different story However I didn t really mind.Here, a young man, suffering from grief and having lost his way in life, is approached by a mysterious elderly woman who instructs him to travel to her school of magic they re in need of a gardener When he arrives, he discovers that while that s true, the old woman, Od, has approached legendary status at the school she hasn t been seen in decades The school, on the surface a haven for talented magicians, is drowning in hidebound strictures and politics, and the king is deeply suspicious of any kind of magic that deviates from the ordinary.When a group of traveling players with an extraordinary magic show arrives in town, suspicion is thrown on both them and on the innocent gardener, and the king demands arrests left and right The story is an excellent depiction of fundamentally decent people who often behave less than decently due to inflexible rules. I ve read a few books by Patricia A McKillip Some I really didn t get into but some drew me in and stayed with me When I read The Riddle Master of Hed I found an amazing world and struggled with the wait between each book Here we ve got another world that grows around you and absorbs you into it.Od is a giantess who seems to have lived hundreds or even thousands of years She in the past established a school of wizardry in an old cobbler s shop After establishing her school she wandered off crossing the world healing animals she came across who needed her and doing whatever it was is that Od does Every now then however there s a sighting of or and encounter with Od As the book opens the last known sighting was 19 years beforewell, the last sighting known of in her school, which has changed a bit since Od established it.But as the book opens as said before Brenden Vetch a gardener who has an incredible way with plants as they talk to him and tell him their secrets encounters a large woman accompanied by a number of animals, some of them injured There are mice and birds in her hair and all kinds of animals around her feet Brenden has been badly hurt and is just about to give up on life all together but, Od asks him to go to her school as a gardener The school is about to need a gardener He can always come back here and give up later if he wants.The story here drew me in and I stayed interested in this small book from beginning to end I can highly recommend it Not the best book I ve ever read but a nice vacation from reality Enjoy. Brenden Vetch S Unique Gift For Connecting With The Agricultural Environment Has Brought Him To The Attention Of The Enigmatic Wizard Od Recruited As A Gardener, Brenden Suddenly Finds Himself At The Wizard S School In Kelior, Where Every Potential Mage Is Required By Law To Serve The Kingdom Of Numis But Unknown To The Rulers Of Numis, Brenden Is Far Than He Seems And His Presence Just May Tip The Balance Of Power Back Into The Hands Of The Wizard Community Done with the first read Now reading again because I don t want the story to end How many ways can I say how much I love Patricia McKillip s writing She makes fantasy worlds come to life for me like no one can, and reading her books is always an experience I want to savor for as long as possible She is the answer and solution to all the finicky issues I have with traditional high fantasy. Not a successful story for me, I think in part because it seemed quite clear at the outset where the story was going With so many viewpoint characters, it seemed to be taking an inordinately long time getting there I have a strong preference for fewer viewpoints, not I was also bugged by the plotline of the princess, ordered to marry and not pleased with it It just didn t seem to fit with the world, where every other woman we see seems to be having careers or, at least, possess considerably self determination than the princess did.The narrator, Gabrielle DeCuir, read most of the story in a very floaty, new agey voice except for a couple of the men, where she seemed to be going for sepulchral which really didn t work for me at all. It started out interesting, but the POV kept jumping around that it was hard for me to understand who this book was about and to figure out the plot point It s not very concise The writing is ok, she has good imagery, but the lack of plot had my mind wandering and I had to go back to figure out what was just read Hard to capture interest when I have no connection with any of the characters. A bit whimsical at times, it reminded me a little of Miyazaki s films in tone and wonderment. How much do I love the way McKillip can tell three or four stories at once A lot. Od Magic isn t up to the heights of her best work, but it s got this almost distant sense of strangeness undergirding its worldbuilding something wondrous and foreign and, surprisingly enough, there s humor there, too, where I wasn t expecting any It means that the book feels less epic, perhaps It ends peacefully.But this is still a story about shaking the foundations of a world and seeing where the pieces end up and the world itself is colorful and exciting Which is good, because the pieces don t go very far, do they I think the bare bones of the setting share a lot with Song of the Basilisk, and certainly the writing is familiar McKillip lyricism, so that this can still feel foreign in places is impressive I d like to hear about the school side, though, and the students I almost feel the focus is too narrow, sticking to Valoren and Yar and the princess, none of whom are students I was reminded very strongly of Rachel Neumeier s The Floating Islands, only she did choose to focus on the school We need fantasy school stories, is what I m saying I d like to see what McKillip can do with one even in Riddlemaster, we only get hints.Here we get the story of a tantalizing showman instead of the school story she opens with and somehow it still works Probably because the school story was a teaser, and the real focus was always on a power larger than all of them The implications might be frightening, but they re not explored here, and there s something almost poignant about the narrowness they keep to, even when they re beginning to reach out.