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Mystic and Rider (The Twelve Houses, Book 1) (original 2005; edition 2006)

by Sharon Shinn

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7861811,622 (4.01)53
Member:cozyread
Title:Mystic and Rider (The Twelve Houses, Book 1)
Authors:Sharon Shinn
Info:Ace (2006), Mass Market Paperback, 421 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
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Mystic and Rider by Sharon Shinn (2005)

2006 (3) 2011 (4) adventure (10) ebook (3) fantasy (227) fantasy fiction (6) favorites (8) fiction (58) hardcover (4) high fantasy (4) library (4) magic (36) mmpb (3) mystics (5) own (6) owned (3) read (13) romance (37) science fiction (8) series (25) sf (6) sff (13) shapeshifters (8) sharon shinn (4) speculative fiction (3) strong women (4) to-read (19) Twelve Houses (34) unread (6) war (3)

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» See also 53 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
I loved this book, right from the beginning it pulled me in. I could not put it down, the story was really well done and the characters were amazing. I loved how the story began after they had started their journey; and all through the book you can see how they are coming to finally trust each other and learn about their pasts. Senneth and Tayse are definatly my favorite characters in the book, although I really like Kirra too. I'm really glad that the other books have the same characters just from someone else's perspective, it'll make them more interesting but I really want to see Senneth and Tayse again. ( )
  Steph1203 | Mar 14, 2014 |
Sharon Shinn creates an exciting world where people must learn to work through their preconceived notions if they are to save the kingdom. One of the twelve powerful families is getting ready to revolt, and is using religious fervor to gain followers. Can the mystics that are being persecuted work with the king's elite force to save the kingdom?

I enjoy the characters and discovering their abilities. When I read this book I don't want to put it down. It is a book I have read several times, and plan to read several more. ( )
  BittyCornwell | Sep 7, 2013 |
I enjoyed this. The characters were rich and interesting, and some how Shinn makes politics and military theory not boring. After finishing it, I'm still not entirely certain which physical description fits which character name (not so great) but I think that's the biggest detractor. From what I understand, each book in the series focuses on a different character and that makes me a little reluctant to read the next one. I was looking forward to reading the rest of this particular character-based story. ( )
  Krumbs | Mar 31, 2013 |
8.75
  vmccaffrey | Dec 17, 2012 |
I'm giving this book a relatively low score because this first one struck me as a rather generic Sword and Sorcery. The backdrop is faux pseudo-European. The King's Riders reminded me of Lackey's Heralds (albeit without the magical trappings) and as for the dilemma of the mystics? I can't agree with the reviewer who wrote that fantasy don't commonly tackle social intolerance, particularly paired with religious fanaticism. Such themes are common, particularly when dealing with magic users. The history of persecution of witches isn't lost on fantasy writers or readers. One reviewer, for instance, brought up Katherine Kurtz's Deryni books, which personally I think deals with the themes with more subtlety and complexity. For that matter the whole driving force of the plot of the Harry Potter deals with intolerance.

That said, I do find this a good "comfort read" that bears rereading. It has the kind of world, like Marion Zimmer Bradley's Darkover or McCaffrey's Pern that has me doodling its details and wanting to find out more about the 12 Houses. And it gets better. I actually started not with this book, but the fifth book, Fortune and Fate, whose description intrigued me when it came out in hardcover. I found out then that Shinn has that trait that makes me grab whatever books an author writes--she creates characters you care about and root for. Senneth, who is the protagonist of this book, among them, yes, but the other characters too. Good thing, given each book is centered around different characters. So while I wouldn't put these books in the first rank of books of high fantasy, I do recommend them as enjoyable reads. If you like this one, the others won't disappoint. ( )
  LisaMaria_C | Oct 18, 2012 |
Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
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For two women, sisters to each other,
who touched my life profoundly:

Cissy, still the best teacher I ever had, and
Mary Anne, who took care of me when I was far from home.

There are all kinds of magic.
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Kardon stood at the back of the tavern, surveying the night's clientele, and smiled with a brutal satisfaction.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0441013031, Mass Market Paperback)

Gillengaria seethes with unrest. In the south, hostility toward magic and its users has risen to a dangerous level, though King Baryn has ordered that such mystics are to be tolerated. It is whispered that he issued the decree because his new wife used her magic powers to ensnare him…

The King knows there are those in the noble Twelve Houses who could use this growing dissent to overthrow him. So he dispatches the mystic Senneth to assess the threat throughout the realm. Accompanying her is a motley band of magic-users and warriors including Tayse, first among the King’s Riders—who holds a hard view of mystics in general, and Senneth in particular.

But as the unlikely allies venture farther into the south, they will face death in a land under the sway of a fanatical cult that would purge Gillengaria of all magic users. And they will come to realize that their only hope of survival lies in standing together…

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:37:12 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

The Mystic woman Senneth, accompanied by a team of Shapeshifters and Riders, is sent by the king into the land of Gillengaria to investigate reports of retaliation against those who use magic.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 2 descriptions

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