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Ship of Magic by Robin Hobb (1998)
Best Fantasy Novels (71)
Female Protagonist (101)
Books Read in 2017 (333)
Sentient ships (1)
Books Read in 2018 (396)
Unread books (216)
Couldn't Finish It (88)
Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0553575635, Mass Market Paperback)Robin Hobb, author of the Farseer trilogy, has returned to that world for a new series. Ship of Magic is a sea tale, reminiscent of Moby Dick and Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin series in its details of shipboard life. It is also a fantasy adventure with sea serpents, pirates, and all sorts of magic. The liveships have distinct personalities and partner with specific people, somewhat like Anne McCaffrey's Brain ships and their Brawns, though these are trading ships and have full crews.
Hobb has peopled the book with many wonderfully developed characters. Most of the primary ones are members of the Vestritts, an Old Trader family which owns the liveship Vivacia. Their stories are intercut with those of Kennit, the ambitious pirate Brashen, the disinherited scion of another family who served on the Vestritt's ship, and Paragon, an old liveship abandoned and believed mad. The sentient sea serpents have their own story hinted at, as well.
Though Ship of Magic is full of action, none of the plotlines get resolved in this book. Readers who resent being left with many questions and few answers after almost 700 pages should think twice before starting, or wait until the rest of the series is out so that their suspense won't be too prolonged. But Hobb's writing draws you in and makes you care desperately about what will happen next, the mark of a terrific storyteller. --Nona Vero
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:31 -0400)
Expecting to inherit her family's Liveship, Althea Vestrit now must defend this animate, intelligent treasure from both her scheming brother-in-law, who plans to use it as a slave ship, and a nation of ruthless pirates, led by Captain Kennit.
(summary from another edition)
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