- Hardcover: 536 pages
- Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books (1 October 2019)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0062683225
- ISBN-13: 978-0062683229
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 4.2 x 21 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 603 g
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 34,314 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Angel Mage Hardcover – 1 Oct 2019
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--Horn Book Magazine
"Goldenhand reaffirms why Nix is a master of the genre: his exquisitely detailed world-building is unparalleled, and his characters are so tremendously alive and compelling that."
--Sarah J. Maas, author of the best-selling Throne of Glass series
"Nix's tale provides a complete experience unto itself. But his focus on this strong character whose overriding passion is to go her own way provides a hugely satisfying background to the other Abhorsen books. A suspenseful prequel to the much-loved Abhorsen books, showcasing the independent Clariel."
--Shelf Awareness (starred review)
Praise for LIRAEL: "What makes Lirael a delight is the magic that Nix brings to his story and to his characters."
--Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Praise for ABHORSEN: "Breathtaking, bittersweet, and utterly unforgettable."
--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Praise for Goldenhand: "A masterfully spun tale well worth the years long wait."
--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"There is no joy like returning to the Old Kingdom. Once again, Nix sets the standard for fantasy, bringing us a tale full of old friends and new enemies, gruesome monsters, and heroines of wit, will, and imagination."
--Leigh Bardugo, New York Times bestselling author of Six of Crows and The Grisha Trilogy
"Garth Nix is one of the best worldbuilders in fantasy, and this book is merely further proof. I love the Old Kingdom series, and Goldenhand is an excellent continuation, packed with the excitement and passion of a storytelling virtuoso at the height of his abilities."--Brandon Sanderson, New York Times bestselling author of the Mistborn trilogy, Warbreaker, The Alloy of Law, The Way of Kings, Rithmatist, and Steelheart.
Praise for the Old Kingdom series: Praise for Clariel: "Between striking characters-from the heroic if not entirely competent young Abhorsen-in-Waiting, Belatiel, to the enigmatic, catlike Mogget-and Nix's brilliantly complex magic system, this superb tale is exactly the book fans of the series have been awaiting."
--Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Themes of freedom and destiny underpin Clariel's harrowing, bittersweet story, and readers will delight in the telling (and in fan favorite Mogget's return)."
--Booklist (starred review)
From the Back Cover
More than a century has passed since Liliath crept into the empty sarcophagus of Saint Marguerite, fleeing the Fall of Ystara. But she emerges from her magical sleep still beautiful, looking no more than nineteen, and once again renews her single-minded quest to be united with her lover, Palleniel, the archangel of Ystara.
A seemingly impossible quest, but Liliath is one of the greatest practitioners of angelic magic to have ever lived, summoning angels and forcing them to do her bidding.
Liliath knew that most of the inhabitants of Ystara died from the Ash Blood plague or were transformed into beastlings, and she herself led the survivors who fled into neighboring Sarance. Now she learns that angels shun the Ystarans’ descendants. If they are touched by angelic magic, the descendants’ blood turns to ash. They are known as Refusers, and can only live the most lowly lives.
But Liliath cares nothing for the descendants of her people. Four young Sarancians hold her interest: Simeon, a studious doctor-in-training; Henri, a dedicated fortune hunter; Agnez, an adventurous musketeer cadet; and Dorotea, an icon-maker and scholar of angelic magic.
The four feel a strange kinship from the moment they meet, but do not know why, or suspect their importance. All become pawns in Liliath’s grand scheme to fulfill her destiny and be united with the love of her life. No matter the cost to everyone else. . . .
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4 customer reviews
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An interesting look at the world of the three musketeers but changed into an alternate world version.
Loved it, and really enjoyed a nice standalone story from one of my favourite authors!
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
I'm a huge Garth Nix fan and will buy pretty much whatever he writes, but this is not his best. I hope he explores more of this world and these ideas with tighter prose in his next book.
First, although there are Dumas-inspired names and Musketeers present and a sinister "Milady," nothing of the swashbuckling adventures or intrigue of Dumas seems to be revived in this work. It's unfortunate that Nix makes some of his allusions to overt, because then one can't help but compare this tome to Three Musketeers. Despite the great length of both works, I think Angel Mage is faster-paced, so that is a plus.
The perhaps peculiarly Austrailian sexual ethics of the novel were frustrating as well. There were no hints of lesbian or bisexual relationships in the Abhorsen series that I remember, but this novel is filled with women warriors who are attracted to each other. I think the idea of making D'Artagnan, Rochefort, and the Cardinal into women is brilliant, and I love it that there are plenty of women warriors in the story, but it gets to be a bit much after awhile. Why is practically every Musketeer and Pursuivant apparently a woman? Why are so many of them comfortable with lesbian or bisexual relationships? Isn't this adolescent literature? Where are the gay men in this novel? I don't remember any. Just a lot of unnecessary promiscuous women. And I don't typically read LGBTQ literature: if I wanted to do that, I would. I wouldn't read Garth Nix instead. So after the third or fourth significant female seemed attracted to another female, I started to worry that things would go farther than I wanted them to and that there would be graphic sex somewhere and that the story would be ruined. It turned out that there was just a lot of heavy hinting, but that really hurt the experience for me.
Additionally, half the reason I bought the book was for a character study of a female villain. Liliath sounded intriguing! But she only actually appears in about 1/8 of the book or less, I think. Despite driving all the action, it's not really her story at all, and in fact, the story would make a great deal more sense if she were taken out of it and the four protagonists had some other evil to overcome. Her backstory is never really given in detail, and *Spoiler Warning* it turns out that because of her, the story "climaxes" in an anticlimactic Return of the Mummy scene at the end. It turns out that the whole plot of this novel, at least the part involving Liliath, was a simple and absurd as that movie, and in fact extremely similar, except in setting. *End of Spoilers.*
This novel has a lot of action, but moves too fast for the characters to have any real adventures, and as I said earlier, doesn't have anything really resembling a complex or believable plot like the Abhorsen trilogy. I'm sad that I paid full price for this novel, but really grateful that I didn't get the audiobook as well. I would be willing to pay about $2 for Angel Mage, knowing what I do now about the story.
The characters were interesting, and I enjoyed them, but there were so many significant ones that none of them got much time onstage. Also, the editing for the novel seemed very sloppy, which added to my frustration.
What would Keats and Aristotle say? Failure of content, certainly, and of execution, I suspect as well, yet there was beauty enough in the characters to provide enough entertainment for the novel to be worth finishing, at least.