The Soul Mirror

The Soul Mirror

A Novel of the Collegia Magica

Book - 2011
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Anne de Vernase rejoices that she has no talent for magic. Her father's pursuit of depraved sorcery has left her family in ruins, and he remains at large, convicted of treason and murder by Anne's own testimony. Now the tutors at Collegia Seravain inform her that her gifted younger sister has died in a magical accident. It seems but life's final mockery that cool, distant Portier de Savin-Duplais, the librarian turned royal prosecutor, arrives with the news that the king intends to barter her hand in marriage. Anne quickly recognizes that the summoning carries implications far beyond a bleak personal future. Merona, the royal city, is beset by plagues of rats and birds and mysterious sinkholes that swallow light and collapse buildings. Whispers of hauntings and illicit necromancy swirl about Dante, the queen's volatile sorcerer. And a murder in the queen's inner circle convinces Anne that her sister's death wasn't accidental. Unable to trust anyone, Anne, who is devoted to science and reason, must take on her sister's magical legacy to discover the truth, and thrust herself into a centuries-old struggle that could forever alter the boundaries of magic, nature, and the divine.
Publisher: New York : Roc, 2011.
ISBN: 9780451463746
Characteristics: 515 p. ;,23 cm.


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Dec 06, 2011

Really enjoyable. Although this is a sequel to _The Spirit Lens_, it can stand well on its own for any reader willing to be tossed into a story head-first, as it were. By mistake, I read it first, and was exhilarated by the pace and entirely engaged in the characters. Carol Berg doesn't pull her punches, and while her narrative voice is similar to that of her previous books, her prose just keeps getting better, and her story-telling more solid. I remain deeply impressed by Berg's ability at world-building, encompassing everything from dress to cosmology. That makes her writing a win-win for me: if she writes more of the Collegia Magica books, I will get to continue to enjoy strong characters and complex plots, and if she moves on again to something new I will get to experience a whole new, thoroughly evolved world and story.

Aug 18, 2011

Carol Berg goes from strength to strength in her Renaissance fantasy series. Although there is action aplenty, her real forte is the creation of a magical alternate world and well-rounded characters that inhabit it. There is a constant evolution of characters in this book, even more so than in the last one, and a growing self-knowledge in the heroine, Anne de Vernase, a woman who scorns magic and clings to arid rationalism ever since the magically induced death of her beloved younger sister. Her initiation into the world of magic and gradual discovery of hidden depths within herself is compelling reading.
Now if only her publishers could do something about that cheesy cover art...

May 27, 2011

Wow! An alternate world with magic. Read in one sitting. Impressed that this is the second book in a series but I never felt that I didn't understand what was going on. Can't wait to read book 1.

MichelleShim May 17, 2011

This is the second book in the Collegia Magica series. I really enjoyed reading it and found it an intertesting continuation of the story but told in a different character's voice from the first one. Try Carol Bergs other books too. The Avonar series is great!

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