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Paperback The Will of the Empress (Circle Reforged) Book

ISBN: 0439441722

ISBN13: 9780439441728

The Will of the Empress (Circle Reforged)

(Part of the Emelan (#9) Series, The Circle Reforged (#1) Series, and Emelan Chronological Order (#11) Series)

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Book Overview

For years the Empress of Namorn has pressed her young cousin, Lady Sandrilene fa Toren, to visit her vast lands within the Empire?s borders. Sandry has avoided the invitation for as long as it was possible. Now Sandry has agreed to pay that overdue visit. Sandry?s uncle promises guards to accompany her. But they?re hardly a group of warriors! They?re her old friends from Winding Circle: Daja, Tris, and Briar. Sandry hardly knows them now. They?ve...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

The Empress Fails to Impress

The Will of the Empress (2005) is the ninth volume in the Circle series. These novels relate the stories of four young ambient mages: Sandrilene fa Toren, Daja Kisubo, Trisana Chandler and Briar Moss. In the Circle of Magic quartet, these youngsters were rescued from distressing situations by the great mage Niklaren Goldeye, who recognized their talents and arranged for them to be trained at Winding Circle. Living together in Discipline Cottage, they learned to control and apply their inherent magics and developed very close relationships. These mages were granted their Medallions at the most unusual age of thirteen. In the Circle Opens quartet, three mages -- Briar, Daja and Tris -- accompanied their mentors on separate wanderings while Sandry remained behind at the Citadel to help her uncle the Duke. All of them encountered both good and bad circumstances, but they also improved their magical abilities and social skills. After several delays, the three travelers returned to Summersea. In this novel, Sandry impatiently awaits the return of the wandering mages. They have been out of range of her mental communications for some time and are very much overdue. The Duke is also awaiting their return. As the wandering mages gradually come back to Summersea, they gather at Number 6 Cheeseman Street, where Daja has rented a house with attached forge. After all have returned, the Duke visits to ask that one or more of them accompany Sandry to Namorn to visit her estates. She has been under increasing pressure by the Empress of Namorn to visit there, but she should not take too many guardsmen with her lest the Empress be angered by the apparent lack of trust. However, her fellow mages could provide sufficient protection. All volunteer to go with her and they travel with a Trader caravan to Dancruan, the capital of Namorn. Despite her lack of entourage, Sandry soon settles into the formalities of the court. But the Empress completely ignores Sandry's desire to return to Emelan at the end of the summer. Sandry gradually becomes aware that the Empress wants all three of them to remain in service to Namorn. The Empress has a strong will, but she badly underestimates these four mages. In this novel, the three wanderers fail to resume mental communications with Sandry or each other. They all have reasons to keep their thoughts private, but this mental silence precludes the merging of their talents. The Empress is aware of their mental solitude and counts on it to further her plans for acquiring their services. Briar has bad dreams of the war in Gyongxe and doesn't want to spread the horrible images (and smells) to his mates; he also resists the idea of consulting mind healers. Daja has bad images of her own that she doesn't want to share with her siblings. Tris just doesn't want them to know that she can see visions on the wind. Even Sandry has had some bad experiences. Each is afraid of rejection by the others, though such withhel

A Tense Reunion

Note: mild spoilers are present in this review (not that every other reviewer on this page hasn't spoiled the surprise about Daja without warning.) I had been anticipating this book for quite a long time - every since the last Circle Opens book, actually. And I have to say, I was not disappointed. In fact, I thought The Will of the Empress was the best book set in the Summersea world since Briar's first book (fourth in the original Circle series). I liked all of the original four, especially Daja's and Briar's books; but I must admit, I was mostly not impressed by the Circle Opens books (with the exception of Briar's.) This is a return to form with style. It helps that the focus is once again on all of the four main characters. That was the principal weakness of the Circle Opens quartet, in my view: Sandry, Tris, Briar and Daja are really best together, despite the strong and interesting minor characters (the teachers, Evvy, etc.) the author also has to work with. Like many readers, I am sure, I was immensely frustrated at the beginning of the book with the rift that had grown between the foursome; but I recognize that it was only logical for now-adults who hadn't seen each other in four years to be reluctant to leap back into each others' arms/minds, thus giving up some of their hard-won independence. Furthermore, it was necessary for the plot development to give the characters an internal conflict to focus on that distracted them from the true enemy, Berenene (the titular Empress.) Either way, sometimes wanting to slap them for their stubbornness - stubbornness which was always in their characters, incidentally, and is not a new development as some reviewers have claimed - didn't lessen my joy as the foursome slowly progressed to reconciliation and renewed closeness. To be honest, I probably would have been satisfied if that was all this book was, but the addition of a gripping plot is what makes it a truly great book. Sandry, Tris, Briar, and Daja must struggle to avoid entrapments in the form of Sandry's suitors and the Empress' machinations, all the while figuring out what they want to do with their lives and doing their best to take care of each other despite not being as close as they once were. The threat against them in this book (the efforts of the Empress to force them to stay in Namorn by any means necessary) is, in my view, by itself not as serious as the plague in Briar's first book or the pirate attacks in Tris', but the fact that they are quarreling with each other while attempting to deal with it makes it the most dangerous of any they have faced. This is a more realistic view of the struggles in real life - the true problem is not always the problem itself, but how you work with others to solve it. I must also admit, a large part of the appeal of this book is the classic pull of the sequel: familiar, beloved characters in new adventures. This book only made me more fond of each and every person in the foursome b

A fast-paced, action-filled, and entertaining fantasy

The battle between good and evil always makes for a good tale. When the good has to be a bit evil to overcome the meanest of all evils, a ring of truth vibrates in the story. How can a fantasy writer who deals in the realms of manufactured worlds, synthesized words, and make-believe creatures weave the sound of truth into a novel? The author must behave like Tamora Pierce in her new work THE WILL OF THE EMPRESS. When I met with Pierce recently, I spoke with her for many hours and I listened to her talk to others for several more hours. Regardless of the question, the story, or the venue, she manages to boil everything down to one concept: we all have an intrinsic power deep inside our beings and we are obligated to engage that power for the benefit of the whole. We are each endowed with a sort of spiritual prowess as well as the choice to use that energy for the protection of ourselves and our worlds. Protection from what, you ask? We must protect ourselves and others from those who would choose to exercise their powers for personal gratification, greed, and harm. Tamora Pierce believes that no one should suffer the injustices or the selfish will of the mean-spirited in this world or in the world she has created for her beloved teenage mages --- Sandry, Tris, Daja and Briar. Three girls and a young man whose magical powers were forged together when they were 13 years old have joined again after years of independence and adventurous study. Even though maturity and distance has the young friends unfamiliar with each other at first, upon reaching the same destination in the new home of Daja, they quickly merge their talents and become a magical force once again. Their common enemy is Sandry's cousin, Berenene dor Ocmore, empress of Namorn, who wishes the four mages to reside in Namorn and become her pawns, thereby adding to the mystery and mastery of her court. What the four do not know is that as they agree to visit the empress and greet her for the first time, she has been gathering reports from her spies for the last seventeen years that have given Berenene specific and outlandish knowledge about them all. She is aware of their magic and their weaknesses, and plans to turn their individual flaws into the very chains she will use to hold them captive in her court. Berenene underestimates the potency of the four friends, however, as they argue like teens, keep secrets from each other like adults, and rekindle their union like an explosion in the universe to recreate themselves as a masterful force for good. Even the wily mages of the empress are no match for the Circle of Magic once it is reforged. Fast-paced and action-filled, THE WILL OF THE EMPRESS is sure to entertain readers of all ages. --- Reviewed by Joy Held

AMAZING!

I work at a bookstore so I got an advance copy of this book. I read it in one sitting. This is just so amazing. Tamora is writing toward an older audience in this book (more like how the Alanna books are written if not a bit older). All four of them have grown up, and it shows in how they act toward each other and other people. I learned some new things about Lark and Rosethorn, that I guess I was just oblivious to previously. Its so frustrating reading about them not getting along in the beginning. Each of them is afraid of admitting what they did before (in the Circle Opens books). Its painful seeing them fight. But when they make up, of course they have to, its wonderful. Its hilarious seeing them astound adults with what they can do. Its touching seeing them stand up for each other and really watch out for each other. This book brings new characters and developes the old ones much more. I can't even begin to explain everything that happens, and it would ruin it for you anyways. This book is amazing. If you like any of Tamora Pierce's books, you'll like this one. Even if you didn't like the first set of books or the Circle Opens book, you'll like this one. If you have never read any Tamora Pierce before, I strongly suggest reading the first 8 books before this one. You'll get a lot more out of it if you have watched the characters grow up and grow together. So read this book when it comes out. You'll be missing out if you don't.

its not released yet. but...

(This is the review for the book on Tammy's website- www.tamorapierce.com) Slowly Daja, Tris, and Briar return to Summersea and Sandry, but they are not the carefree youngsters they were when they left to travel with their teachers. They have things they don't really want to share with the others in their old mental link. Sandry, trying to regain their old closeness, feels rejected and angry: she feels punished. With their refusal to renew their old ties bitter in her mind, she can't believe it when they agree to Duke Vedris's request that they accompany Sandry on a long-overdue visits to the lands and family that Sandry has in Namorn. The duke is right to worry about Sandry's trip to the north. Empress Berenene of Namorn does not like it that any of the income from the vast Landreg estates has been leaving Namorn to fill Sandry's pockets. She wants that money--and her marriageable young cousin--to stay in Namorn, where Berenene can manipulate both for the enrichment of her throne. Moreover, when she sees how powerful Sandry's three young mage friends are, Berenene decides that she wants them to stay as well. To convince the four young people to stay, the wily, beautiful and powerful empress has an empire full of tricks: great mages who can trap less powerful ones, handsome young men and women devoted to her who will court whoever she orders them to, tax laws to beggar people who look to Sandry for help, family ties like Sandry's cousin Ambros and his family, greenhouses and gardens beautiful enough to enchant even the most hard-hearted of garden mages. She is willing to offer Briar, Tris, and Daja money and power to serve her. She is intelligent, and she has a will of steel. What can four eighteen-year-olds do against her? It is not as if they are even strong at this point: Tris is besieged by visions, Sandry by lovers, Daja by love, Briar by horrific dreams from the last two years. They have people to look after, a madman, and Sandry's new maid and her children. How can they possibly defy imperial Berenene and her powerful servants? I have really high hopes for this book (after all, evrey single one of her books are great!)Can't Wait!
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