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Master of Sorrows
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Master of Sorrows
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You've heard the story before: an orphaned boy, raised by a wise old man, comes to a fuller knowledge of his magic and uses it to fight the great evil threatening his world.But what if that hero were...
You've heard the story before: an orphaned boy, raised by a wise old man, comes to a fuller knowledge of his magic and uses it to fight the great evil threatening his world.But what if that hero were...
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  • You've heard the story before: an orphaned boy, raised by a wise old man, comes to a fuller knowledge of his magic and uses it to fight the great evil threatening his world.

    But what if that hero were destined to become the new dark lord?

    The Academy of Chaenbalu has stood against magic for centuries. Hidden from the world, acting from the shadows, it trains its students to detect and retrieve magic artifacts, which it jealously guards from the misuse of others. Because magic is dangerous: something that heals can also harm, and a power that aids one person may destroy another.

    Of the academy's many students, only the most skilled can become avatars—warrior thieves, capable of infiltrating the most heavily guarded vaults—and only the most determined can be trusted to resist the lure of magic. More than anything, Annev de Breth wants to become one of them.

    But Annev carries a secret. Unlike his classmates who were stolen as infants from the capital city, Annev was born in the village of Chaenbalu, was believed to be executed, and then unknowingly raised by his parents' killers. Seventeen years later, he struggles with the burdens of a forbidden magic, a forgotten heritage, and a secret deformity. When Annev is subsequently caught between the warring ideologies of his priestly mentor and the Academy's masters, he must finally decide whether to accept the truth of who he really is ... or embrace the darker truth of what he may one day become.

About the Author-

  • Justin Travis Call is a graduate of Harvard University and the author of Master of Sorrows, Book 1 of the Silent Gods series. In addition to being a novice screenwriter and voice actor, Justin is also the CEO of Broomstick Monkey Games and codesigner of Imperial Harvest and Royal Strawberries. When he isn't reading or writing books, Justin likes boxing, designing tabletop games, and playing League of Legends. He currently lives in Park City, Utah, with his wife, his two sons, his Great Dane (Pippa) and his Saint Bernard-mastiff (Herbie).

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    December 2, 2019
    Game designer Call inverts fantasy tropes in this sprawling, slow-moving debut, the first in the Silent Gods series. At the Academy of Chaenbalu, magic is feared and tightly controlled. Academy acolyte Ainnevog “Annev” de Breth was born with no left hand, which is widely considered to mark him as a son of the dark god Keos. Ancient Priest Sodar saved Annev from being killed as a baby and has helped him to conceal his difference during his childhood at the academy. As Annev prepares for the Test of Judgment, which will determine his ability to become a master avatar, or warrior thief, tasked with stealing magical artifacts to place them under the Academy’s protection, he contends with threats from his fellow students; his attraction to the headmaster’s daughter, priestess Myjun; and his dark magical impulses. Call’s worldbuilding is impressive, but often bogs down in minutiae. A late-stage reveal and violent climax nicely set up book two, but the dense storytelling and plodding beginning will lose impatient readers before they get there. Agent: Danny Baror, Baror International.

  • Library Journal

    January 1, 2020

    DEBUT The enigmatic Academy of Chaenbalu has been concealed from the world for centuries, training students to become Adepts, agents charged with seeking and retrieving dangerous magical artifacts to lock them away in the school's subterranean vaults. Any deformity is treated as a mark of corruption and evil, so young student Annev and his mentor, priest Sodar, must hide that Annev was born with only one hand. Learning the skills of combat, stealth, and quick thinking required of an Adept candidate, Annev navigates the tests of the academy and faces a climactic final battle that will threaten to destroy his entire way of life. VERDICT Call's debut, which kicks off the "Silent Gods" series, takes its time coming to a boil, but by the final act there is plenty of action and conflict. Readers of Mark Lawrence's "Book of the Ancestor" trilogy or Patrick Rothfuss's "Kingkiller Chronicle" will appreciate the depiction of a young conflicted hero coming of age in a fantastic school.--Jason Puckett, Georgia State Univ. Lib, Atlanta

    Copyright 2020 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus

    January 1, 2020
    In a world where difference means death, can a boy with a secret find his own path? Annev has only one more chance to pass his Test of Judgment. Pass, and he gets a coveted spot as an "avatar" who will travel the countryside searching for magical artifacts. Fail, and he'll spend the rest of his life as a servant. He'll also be forbidden to marry, so if he fails, he'll lose his chance at a life with Myjun, his headmaster's daughter. Until now, he's teamed up with his friends Titus and Therin to pass the Tests; but with only one avatar spot left, Annev will have to compete with them to win. To further complicate matters, Annev has a secret--a secret that began years ago when his mentor, the priest Sodar, saved a baby who was born with only one hand. In Annev's world, even something as minor as a scar is considered a mark of the dark god Keos--a missing limb would be a death sentence. Even as Annev attempts to prove himself within this harsh, unforgiving system, he struggles with the black-and-white thinking that dominates his world. Ultimately, he must learn that "if you don't like the road you're on, there's always another path." Debut novelist Call plunges the reader directly into the action and never lets the pace flag. Even as we learn about the ancient battles, dark prophecies, and mystical assassins that are about to change the course of Annev's life, the stakes remain appealingly human: Can Annev achieve his goals without betraying his moral code? Will the people he cares about accept him for who he is? A fast-paced, action-packed epic fantasy to sink your teeth into.

    COPYRIGHT(2020) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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