Hello hello and welcome or welcome back to my little bookish corner of the internet. Today I’m bringing you my review of Charmcaster, book three in the Spellslinger series. Find my review for book one here, and book two, Shadowblack, here.
‘I was getting almost as good at running away from enemies as I was at making them in the first place. Turns out, I wasn’t running nearly fast enough.’
Kellen has begun to master his spellslinging and the Argosi tricks for staying alive, and he and Reichis have found a career that suits them both: taking down mercenary mages who make people’s lives miserable. But Ferius is concerned that Kellen is courting disaster . . .
When I finished book two, it was obvious how much darker it had got from the relatively chilled beginning of book one. The same is true here, and I love this escalation, as it compliments the character development and changes so much.
Kellen is on a bit of a mission after his discoveries of book two, and Charmcaster sees him chasing down the people he needs to visit. We meet him, Ferius and Reichis when they’ve nearly seen everyone, and have one last place to visit – Gitabria, a place legendary for the things it makes and produces. It quickly becomes apparent, however, that there is more than one reason they need to be there, and so the story truly begins.
Where I loved book two more than book one, so again did I love book three more than book two. De Castell has prouced a wonderful universe to get lost in, but it’s more than that. You really feel like you know Kellen. You could play cards with Ferius. You would bribe Reichis with butter biscuits so he didn’t eat your eyes. The characters are vibrant and real, the setting vivid and clear, even as it is new and fresh. As we discover these legendary places with Kellen, we’re seeing things for the first time through his eyes, so there’s no feeling of ignorance, of not knowing enough, as de Castell conjures up all the answers we could wish for and then a few more.
There were dark plans at work in this book, and I genuinely cried on more than one ocassion. It’s brilliant and beautiful, painful and poignant, and left me wanting more from the series in the best way. I’ll be reading book four this December as I can’t wait any longer for the next installment.
If you’re looking for a fully fleshed out fantasy universe, where your questions will be answered as the protagonist discovers them, and the cast will capture your heart, this is a series is one for you.
Thanks for joining me for today’s step into the Spellslinger universe. It won’t be the last time I visit it!