The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg

 

FantasyThe Paper Magician by Charlie N. HolmbergWhen she finishes Tagis Praff School for the Magically Inclined, Ceony Twill wants to be a Smelter magician. Although she is at the top of her class, she isn’t allowed to choose. Instead she is assigned to be a Paper magician. Paper! That is such a weak classification, nothing like working with metal. But it’s either accept the Paper bonding or give up magic completely. She doesn’t want to become a household servant so she accepts the position.

Master Magician Emery Thane is one of the few remaining paper magicians in the world. He takes Ceony as his apprentice. He has an animated paper skeleton as his butler and makes a paper dog to keep Ceony company. She quickly learns the art and precision of folding and how to animate her creations. An incorrect fold will ruin the whole design and prevent the magic from working. He teaches her how to bring stories to life while reading a book.

Ceony is on her own for a few days while Mg. Thane takes care of Magician Council business. Shortly after he returns, his arm injured, another magician appears in their home. Lira is an Excisioner – an evil magician who works with skin and blood. She reaches into Mg. Thane’s chest and pulls out his heart. A temporary stop gap will keep him alive a day or two. Ceony jumps on a paper glider and chases Lira. Now she has to take the oddest journey of her life in order to get Mg. Thane’s heart back to his body before the temporary solution gives out.

What a wonderful debut novel Charlie N. Holmberg has given us. The Paper Magician is set in a Victorian England that has magic (but is not steampunk). Holmberg creates a world where a magician bonds with a material for life – and cannot change to a different material once bonded.

The Paper Magician has a touch of romance as Ceony learns how special Mg. Thane and his magic are. She is 19 and entering a new world different from the one she knew before she received the scholarship to the School. She learns that appearances are deceiving.

Holmberg’s imaginative fantasy moves quickly and keeps the reader pulled in. There are lots of magician and steampunk types novels being written. If you’re looking for something in that genre, I highly recommend The Paper Magician.

Notice: Fantasy non-graphic violence

More books by Charlie N. Holmberg

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