Fantasy

The Battlemage by Taran Matharu

This is the third book of the Summoner series, so there will be spoilers for The Inquisition.

The Battlemage picks up right where The Inquisition left off, with Fletcher and his friends trying to survive in the ether. In fact, this book is almost completely set in the ether, so I felt a bit lost when I started (being more familiar with Hominum) but once I got my bearings I was fine.

In this book we get more details on the different races, especially the Orcs and the Gremlins (I really enjoyed the inclusion of the Gremlins.) Khan, the albino orc who considers Fletcher as his arch-enemy (because Khan wants Ignatius, Fletcher’s salamander) is on a mission to destroy Hominum. Fletcher and gang are the only ones that can stop him before he finds the portal to their homeworld. Ignatius turns out to be more than meets the eye – but of course, fans of this series have been comparing it to Pokemon since the first book, so it isn’t surprising at all.

Things I liked about this book:

(1) It wraps up Fletcher’s story very well, and while there is a fourth book coming out, those that don’t like to follow long series can choose to end it here as a trilogy.

(2) It’s perfect for those who don’t typically read high fantasy but would like to, as it’s FUN and FULL OF ACTION AND ADVENTURE and yet it’s also pretty light.

(3) You can easily read this is one sitting.

(4) Ignatius is just so <33333

(5) The romance. I like that while there are hints of romance, it doesn’t overpower the story AT ALL. I need to recommend this to my ex-staff who despairs of the fact that almost all the YA are so romancey now.

I did think that this series might have more of a middle-grade vibe for some readers, but this may be one of the things I love about it. In a way, this series doesn’t offer anything new – it’s a Good vs. Evil magic school story with elves and dwarves and orcs (and gremlins!) And yet, thanks to reading so many books that are sold to me as “fantasy” but read more like “paranormal romance”, I find this series very refreshing. I’ll be looking out for the fourth Summoner book, which is a sequel featuring Arcturus (the first commoner to be admitted into Vocans Academy.)

Disclaimer: I received a review copy from Pansing Distributors Malaysia in exchange for an honest review. Thank you, Rainbow!

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