Sonea has learned much at the magicians’ guild and the other novices now treat her with a grudging respect. But she cannot forget what she witnessed in the High Lord’s underground room – or his warning that the realm’s ancient enemy is growing in power once more. As Sonea learns more, she begins to doubt her guildmaster’s word. Could the truth really be as terrifying as Akkarin claims, or is he trying to trick her into assisting in some unspeakably dark scheme? – Goodreads
A lot happens in this final entry to The Black Magician trilogy. I will try not to reveal any spoilers in this review!
Sonea finally comes to the end of her character arc. Her previous flaws of distrust, lack of knowledge, and lack of respect are all worked through and come to a satisfying conclusion. Akkarin becomes a far more important character in this entry, as he takes Sonea under his wing and begins to show her more of the world than she could have imagined. His character is still shrouded in a lot of mystery for a lot of the book, but in the final third we see a new side of him.
The plot was well foreshadowed by the mysteries, secrets, and events of the previous two books. A lot happens quite quickly, and perhaps it might have been better to have had more of that epic scale earlier on in the trilogy. However, it was still a fantastic story and this book did it justice.
Lord Dannyl’s storyline was a little slower in this book than in The Novice, however his character continues to develop, and he has an important role to play in revealing certain secrets.
Overall, this trilogy is an incredible story. It’s full of magic, dark secrets, forbidden and unexpected love, and friendship. When I first read these books (I was 13) I fell in love with them and reread them over and over again! They might not be cutting-edge, modern fantasy, but they are solid fantasy books that hold their own in the genre.