The Wizard’s Promise
by Cassandra Rose Clark
Original Publication Date: May 6, 2014
Length: 332 pages
Obtained Via:I received an Advanced Reader’s Copy of this book in exchange for a review. This in no way affected my final opinion of the work.
Publisher: Strange Chemistry
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All Hanna Euli wants is to become a proper witch.
Unfortunately, she’s stuck as an apprentice to a grumpy fisherman. When their boat gets caught up in a mysterious storm and blown wildly off course, Hanna finds herself further away from home than she’s ever been before.
As she tries to get back, she learns there may be more to her apprentice master than she realized, especially when a mysterious, beautiful, and very non-human boy begins following her through the ocean, claiming that he needs Hanna’s help.
This book started out so promising. When I was younger, I had a thing for books that took place on ships. I read every book about sailors and pirates I could get my hands on. I’d read books set in this world, and I’d also read fantasy pirate books. Bottom line, if a book took place on the sea then I wanted to read it. So for the first half, The Wizard’s Promise reminded me of all those books I loved. However, this book ended up drifting in a sea of vague plot and flat characters.
Mostly I think I just got bored with The Wizard’s Promise because not much happens. Hanna sails with her apprentice master until she realizes he’s hiding his past from her. They end up being stranded in of-course and then Kalour, the apprentice master, sets out on an adventure, bringing Hanna along as well as another wind-witch. They sail. Hanna fumes. They dock. Hanna fumes. They get blown off by magic and the boat is destroyed, leaving them to repair it on an online. Hanna fumes and takes up work with a fishing boat so she can save money to go home. They fish. And fish some more. There’s some vague magic threats and every once in awhile something semi-dangerous happens.
Most of the book seems to be building up to a dangerous threat and an adventure that Hanna will eventually decide to embark on. It’s clear from at least the halfway point how Hanna’s character is developing, so there’s really no need for all the build-up because it’s obvious at the end of the book that Hanna will decide to continue on, for all her talk of going home. The last half of the book could have easily be summed up in a chapter or two and the story could have continued onward instead of this book cutting off where it did to build anticipation for the second book.
I did like the world in The Wizard’s Promise and how different people harnessed magic from different elements of nature–the north wind, south wind, the sea, the earth, etc. The passages and description of the magic system were the only times I was really invested in the book. Other than that, there wasn’t much that held my attention. I struggled to make my review even this long because I just don’t have much to say about The Wizard’s Promise.
Unfortunately, I did not find this book as promising as the cover or the title. For the most part, The Wizard’s Promise was just so-so. I didn’t dislike reading it, but it failed to make any sort of an impression on me at all and I doubt I’ll remember much of the story in a few day’s time. 2/5 cupcakes.