Warning: If you haven’t read “The Mindmage’s Wrath” by Garrett Robinson, don’t read this review if you don’t want spoilers!
Happy Halloween! I’m back with another book review, and this time it’s “The Mindmage’s Wrath” by Garrett Robinson! I’ve read the first book, “The Alchemist’s Touch,” in the past, and liked it, so I’m here with its sequel this time!
Like with “Nightblade” and other past books I’ve reviewed by Robinson, this is also part of me being part of Team Legacy, a group where you can read their books in advance for free and, in return, write an honest review for them! If you’ve come here from Amazon to read the full review, let it be known that I will be continually post only a section of the full book reviews for Team Legacy on Amazon, as that is the condition for posting reviews for their books. Full reviews will always be on this blog, and due to Amazon guidelines, I can’t post the URL to the full review on the Amazon reviews. Make sure to follow this blog to read the full review!
Here’s the summary so we know what it’s about:
“A murder in the Academy reveals a darkness growing upon the Seat.
Ebon has survived the attack upon the High King’s Seat, and now the Academy struggles to piece itself together in the midst of civil war. Now a quiet urgency hangs over all the lessons taught within the citadel; every student knows the spells they learn now may one day save their lives from the enemies of the King.
Then an instructor is found dead in the Academy’s halls—their throat slit by an unknown assassin.
Panic creeps in, while Ebon and his friends hear of thefts from the Academy’s vaults. Artifacts of incredible power are disappearing one by one, and are clearly connected to the murder. Theren thinks she knows who the thief is, but cannot prove it. And so Ebon and his friends must reveal the identity of the murderer, before they strike again.”
I can definitely say that this book improved considerably compared to the last one, so let me count the pros first.
Firstly: THANK YOU FOR MAKING ADARA MORE RELEVANT TO THE PLOTLINE, OVERALL MUCH MORE USEFUL, AND GIVEN MORE DEPTH IN GENERAL OVERALL.
I previously complained at length about how she felt flat and nothing more than a love interest for Ebon for the last book, but this book definitely improved on that since last time by making her integral to helping Ebon think out a few things that are integral to the main plot and her getting to even interact with Theren and Kalem, kind of like a friend group of sorts. Ebon and Adara’s romance really developed into actual romance as well, through her becoming more integral to the main plot and not just a side romance. The chemistry between them is so much better here overall, especially with how it culminates into her and Ebon’s confessions of love to each other, and I am so glad it got better for the two of them.
- XAIN of all people makes an appearance, including his son Erin (though that’s much later in the book).
Even more surprising? He’s the new Dean of the Academy Ebon and friends go to. For those familiar with the Nightblade series that I’ve previously reviewed, his distate for magestones is very-much referenced, and he’s just as scary as he comes off to the other characters in this series (especially Ebon, though for good reason). It’s interesting to have him show up in this series, and I think he’ll be much more active in the next book.
- The plot twist of Theren and Lilith actually being lovers in the past was incredibly surprising to me.
We’ve known since last book that Theren is canonically lesbian (I forget which chapter where she mentions this to Kalem and Ebon, but it was there), but I didn’t expect her to have a past love interest end up being the same person that was A. from the House of Yerrin, of all Houses, and B. someone who’s played the antagonist role to Ebon so far (though it does explain why she and Theren just didn’t get along). It’ll be interesting to see how Theren and Lilith’s relations develop in the next book—will Lilith end up becoming more an ally? Will they ever mend the shortcomings they have with each other? Or will things get worse? We’ll just have to wait and see.
And now for the cons:
- The last chapter before the epilogue, just after all the action happened but before the very end felt a bit too sudden.
I know this sounds a bit strange, given how cliffhanger endings tend to generally be sudden, but this one just came out of the blue. Let me explain: The very last scene is Xain figuring out that Ebon was partially responsible for Xain’s son, Erin, being taken away by Isra, resulting in Xain confronting Ebon and swearing to bring him to justice (even though there is currently no proof thanks to Theren messing around with her magic to ensure there were no key witnesses). It ends with Xain walking away…and so we leave on that as a cliffhanger other than the Epilogue where Isra meets with (major spoiler alert!) Damaris of the family Yerrin.
Please also note that this whole last scene took place literally just after the climax of the story, too. Because of the timing and just how the way that second-last scene was written in its ending, I felt that it was too sudden for me as a reader and left me wondering, “Is there anything else we could see here, such as Ebon’s own thoughts on this new threat of Xain against him?”
- Isra being revealed to be the one causing the main chaos of this book was a bit…sudden.
I question whether I was clueless enough to not realize that it could be Isra up to all the murders right until the big reveal and the fact that she took Erin away from Xain and all, but at the same time I can’t help but feel that it was too sudden a reveal, or at least not enough lead-up overall to the reveal. Because of this, the who ‘who’s murdering everyone’ case felt a bit too open-and-shut to be sure that Isra was really the one murdering everyone as a result.
Overall, 4 out of 5 stars! I’m definitely interested in reading what happens next! Will Xain be reunited with his son? What is Damaris planning with Isra and keeping Erin captive? Will Ebon and his friends be able to help? There are so many questions left unanswered!