HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Novice by Taran Matharu
Loading...

The Novice

by Taran Matharu

Series: Summoner (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2722041,704 (3.65)2
None
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 2 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 20 (next | show all)
Matharu’s book has a HUGE following on Wattpad. (It had over 3 million reads in 6 months. At present it has over 6.5million reads and 181k votes – Wattpadders aren’t stupid!) It was also recommended to me by a fellow author, whose judgement I trust.

However, when I began to read about orcs, elves and dwarves I did wonder what I’d let myself in for. You see, I have deliberately steered clear of epic fantasy of this nature for many years.

Our young hero, Fletcher, is an orphan raised in a remote area by the village smithy. He has a hard life, is victimised by the bullying son of the town’s wealthiest and most powerful resident. (Minor Spoiler) One market day he makes friends with an old war veteran and comes into possession of the diary of a battle mage, who was researching orc summoning magic. You know what will happen next – Fletcher reads the book and summons a rare demon. Here starts our adventure.

The Novice is very derivative of the classics of epic fantasy that have gone before it, yet it is also very well written. In an interview with Teen librarian Matharu talked about a love of history and mythology, but said: “I also used my favourite fantasy tropes in the creation of the Summoner world. These included the magical schools of Earthsea, Harry Potter and Discworld, the multiple races of Lord of the Rings, Skyrim and Redwall, the portals to another world in the Chronicles of Narnia and Stargate, and even the creature companions in Pokémon.”

Combining all these influences in one, means Matharu has put his own twists into the genre. In the novel we also find firearms as well as bows, a variety of bladed weapons (I particularly like the use of the kopesh) and his blend of demonology has subtle differences to it from other novels I’ve read.

Within the first page you realise that Matharu knows his craft. The narrative is well constructed: there is a perfect balance between scene setting / description and action so the pacing is excellent – it romps along. All the way through the story was absolutely easy to visualise – something I love.

A couple of things that struck me as awkward were the fact that the orcs are said to be ruled by a large albino orc and the use of the Pinkertons as a corrupt constabulary. This obvious lack of originality was jarring.

The character construction is good. Fletcher and his friends are multi-dimensional, likeable and relatable. The bad guys, at this stage, are more one dimensional but this is a series and we’re bound find out more about them as time progresses.

I particularly liked the political intrigue, racial tension and class tensions that existed within Matharu’s world. These added an extra layer of realism and were a nice touch in his world building.

I can see this book being loved across a wide age bracket. I would say advanced MG readers through to adults.

Matharu gives you what is tried and true with some new twists in one very well constructed book. It’s a rollicking adventure for all ages, with characters you will come love.

Four Stars! ( )
  tracymjoyce | Nov 16, 2017 |
Matharu’s book has a HUGE following on Wattpad. (It had over 3 million reads in 6 months. At present it has over 6.5million reads and 181k votes – Wattpadders aren’t stupid!) It was also recommended to me by a fellow author, whose judgement I trust.

However, when I began to read about orcs, elves and dwarves I did wonder what I’d let myself in for. You see, I have deliberately steered clear of epic fantasy of this nature for many years.

Our young hero, Fletcher, is an orphan raised in a remote area by the village smithy. He has a hard life, is victimised by the bullying son of the town’s wealthiest and most powerful resident. (Minor Spoiler) One market day he makes friends with an old war veteran and comes into possession of the diary of a battle mage, who was researching orc summoning magic. You know what will happen next – Fletcher reads the book and summons a rare demon. Here starts our adventure.

The Novice is very derivative of the classics of epic fantasy that have gone before it, yet it is also very well written. In an interview with Teen librarian Matharu talked about a love of history and mythology, but said: “I also used my favourite fantasy tropes in the creation of the Summoner world. These included the magical schools of Earthsea, Harry Potter and Discworld, the multiple races of Lord of the Rings, Skyrim and Redwall, the portals to another world in the Chronicles of Narnia and Stargate, and even the creature companions in Pokémon.”

Combining all these influences in one, means Matharu has put his own twists into the genre. In the novel we also find firearms as well as bows, a variety of bladed weapons (I particularly like the use of the kopesh) and his blend of demonology has subtle differences to it from other novels I’ve read.

Within the first page you realise that Matharu knows his craft. The narrative is well constructed: there is a perfect balance between scene setting / description and action so the pacing is excellent – it romps along. All the way through the story was absolutely easy to visualise – something I love.

A couple of things that struck me as awkward were the fact that the orcs are said to be ruled by a large albino orc and the use of the Pinkertons as a corrupt constabulary. This obvious lack of originality was jarring.

The character construction is good. Fletcher and his friends are multi-dimensional, likeable and relatable. The bad guys, at this stage, are more one dimensional but this is a series and we’re bound find out more about them as time progresses.

I particularly liked the political intrigue, racial tension and class tensions that existed within Matharu’s world. These added an extra layer of realism and were a nice touch in his world building.

I can see this book being loved across a wide age bracket. I would say advanced MG readers through to adults.

Matharu gives you what is tried and true with some new twists in one very well constructed book. It’s a rollicking adventure for all ages, with characters you will come love.

Four Stars!
( )
  tracymjoyce | Nov 16, 2017 |
A bit of a slow start but it picked up the energy about halfway through. Wasn't really excited about reading the next book, and I have to give it to authors with their one line shock and awe cliff-hangers, always right there at the end of the last paragraph. Get you all excited an impatient for the next book. I became a little invested in some of the characters lives and I've developed just a little curiosity about what's in store for them. So now I'm torn about if I want to continue or not.

So about the story, it was a good concept, not completely new, but still very interesting. A varied and complex world, with different races, and social classes clashing and scheming for political favor. As well as the concept of summoning demon companions for power and status. The main reason I was interested in reading this book, other than the synopsis details, was the male lead. I much prefer reading male protag/narrator in YA which tends to be far and few between but I will jump at the chance when ever I can. I didn't get any of that annoying self deprecation from Fletcher or too much insecurity when it comes to decision making. The group dynamics of Fletcher and his friends gave me something to look forward to each chapter. A group working together to solve or investigate a mystery is never a bad thing for a story in my opinion. Go Scooby Gang! And most importantly, there was no romance. Not sure if I will be so lucky with the next book. Hopefully it's the same for book 2. ( )
  GigisIrieReads | Aug 26, 2017 |
The book, The Novice, is the first book in the series, the series is called, Summoner. The time the book takes place is during the Medieval times. The main character and narrator, Fletcher, is an orphan, who is raised by a blacksmith named Berdon Wulf. They live in Pelt, a town that has only a few resources to trade such as animal pelts and leather. On a day merchants come to Pelt, a soldier gave Fletcher a summoner's book, and in it was a summoning scroll! He accidentally read the summoning scroll that summoned a demon, that he eventually learned was called a Salamander demon. The demon once belonged to an orc summoner, their demons are normally weak, but they have a lot of them.

When Fletcher summoned the demon, a couple hours later in a graveyard, Didric, a person that hates Fletcher, comes with two guards, in hope to really, really hurt Fletcher, or maybe even kill him! There was a surprise, the demon Fletcher summoned can breath FIRE, and he has claws, and is really fast and can be like a little tornado of flame and claws. When Didric was threatening to hurt or kill Fletcher, the demon, which he eventually names Ignatius, burns and claws Didric. He deserved this because he tried before to actually KILL Fletcher! After that he had to run away with only Ignatius, a bow, a sword, food, and a lot of money, with out pennies. He ran to Corcillum, a city that had the school for adepts, the firstborn nobles, and lucky peasants and nobles that have the rare gift to summon demons. At the school they learn to a cast spells, fight, and learn about the demons they know about, and to get a good place in the military. They have a tournament at the end of each school year, and Fletcher won the tournament, but at the end, police come and said he is under arrest, and sadly the book ends there, so I cant explain more about the event.

I gave the book 4 and 1/2 stars because of the cliff hanger at the end, it made it lose an entire half star. It was interesting because it took place in the Medieval ages. The book had really good timing for each event and detail. The best part was the tournament, it was a very interesting part. The cliff hanger is very surprising and the book ending after they say they will arrest Fletcher was surprising! The book has magic in it, but it is different then magic like the Harry Potter series, so it is surprising when there is magic. ( )
  NoahJ.BG3 | Oct 8, 2016 |
I received this as an ARC through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This is also posted on www.spidersbookclub.com

The Novice by Taran Matharu is about a young boy named Fletcher. Fletcher is an orphan. He was abandoned at the city of Pelt's gates in the winter without a single item of clothing or even a blanket. He was lucky to be found by Berdon the town's blacksmith. After everyone was asked if they could take the baby in Berdon himself took Fletcher in.

I personally think Fletcher was better off. Berdon treated him well and loved the boy. He could have been sent to an orphanage or taken on as a worker, forever in debt to his master, but our Fletcher was taken on by Berdon who taught him to read, to hunt and even a part of his trade.

Fletcher is about 15 in our tale that starts in Pelt but soon moves on. Fletcher comes across a book and this book was owned by a summoner. Most kids get tested at about his age to see if they have the power to summon however Fletcher lives so far out his village has never been tested. It is through luck and this book that Fletcher summons a ferret like demon, which takes him on the run to learn more about his new powers and help in the war against the orcs.

I love this world. Fletcher is a good character but so are the main characters. These are essentially Fletcher's best friends. Othello, the first dwarf summoner and Sylva the first elf summoner in a very long time. Fletcher and another boy Seraph are really the only friends the dwarf and elf are friends with even though really their hopes are to unite their people with the humans. Sylva tried, she really did but it turns out that one boy from a little village is the only one that can put aside petty indifference from centuries of misunderstandings and see past that to the person in front of him. In many ways Fletcher himself proves there are those out there who don't discriminate against a race but rather a person if they have gained a reason to be disliked, not because they are of a certain race.

This alone says alot about the world and the sort of obstacles many face. Unless you are of noble birth your life is hard and even in the school learning about Summoning you are seen as a lesser being due to being a commoner. Only in the last 20-30 years have commoners been tested due to nobles believing they alone can summon. To summon is to lead the battle against the orcs as a commander or a general or some other sort of high commission. It makes sense the nobles wouldn't want to give that up. Traditions are hard to break. Although it's not what Fletcher is there to do it would appear just by befriending a dwarf and a his entire family and an elf he himself is bringing about a change.

Can he change everything though? With people hating him at every turn for the way his mind works, Fletcher who never asked for any of this is in a world that isn't ready for him or his ideas. The real question is will they cope, can they manage to see what he does is worth doing or will they always shun him for his hope at a better place.

I really enjoyed this book. I didn't know what to expect from this title and I was gripped. I loved every moment in this book and the only reason I'm giving 4 stars is because there were so many time skips and it's fair if there wasn't much to tell in that time period but to lose 3 months of them training and getting closer to one another I felt a little cheated. This book is designed for kids and as such I can see why they don't want to bore anyone but I personally would liked to have seen more of that three months instead of deciding a plan and then going straight to the day before the plan is executed.

There is so much more to come in the next book I really was gutted I didn't have the next one especially with the cliffhanger. I highly recommend this title and hope if you give it a chance you like it as much as I do. ( )
  Spiderg1rl | Aug 12, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 20 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
Quotations
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Book description
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

When blacksmith apprentice Fletcher discovers that he has the ability to summon demons from another world, he travels to Adept Military Academy where must decide where his loyalties lie. The fate of an empire is in his hands.

» see all 4 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
25 wanted

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.65)
0.5
1
1.5
2 6
2.5
3 10
3.5 3
4 14
4.5 3
5 7

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 120,004,994 books! | Top bar: Always visible