The Spirit Lens: A Novel of the Collegia Magica
by Carol Berg
Cover Artist: Gordon Crabb
Review by Mel Jacob
Roc Trade Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780451463111
Date: 05 January 2010 List Price $16.00 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Article /
Prolific and award winning author, Carol Berg keeps the reader on edge as she recounts the efforts of Portier de Savin-Duplais, librarian and failed mage, in The Spirit Lens as he investigates who wants his cousin the king dead. The king believes in science, the queen in magic. Their young son died, and the queen turned to her mages. Many suspect the queen of planning the accident to her husband. The king loves the queen and believes otherwise. From official release/information:
Product Description: In a kingdom on the verge of a grand renaissance, where natural science has supplanted failing sorcery, someone aims to revive a savage rivalry...
For Portier de Savin-Duplais, failed student of magic, sorcery's decline into ambiguity and cheap illusion is but a culmination of life's bitter disappointments. Reduced to tending the library at Sabria's last collegia magica, he fights off despair with scholarship. But when the king of Sabria charges him to investigate an attempted murder that has disturbing magical resonances, Portier believes his dreams of a greater destiny might at last be fulfilled.
As the king's new agente confide, Portier - much to his dismay - is partnered with the popinjay Ilario de Sylvae, the laughingstock of Sabria's court. Then the need to infiltrate a magical cabal leads Portier to Dante, a brooding, brilliant young sorcerer whose heretical ideas and penchant for violence threaten to expose the investigation before it's begun. But in an ever-shifting landscape of murders, betrayals, old secrets, and unholy sorcery, the three agentes will be forced to test the boundaries of magic, nature, and the divine...