Monday, December 31, 2018

Review: Charmcaster by Sebastien de Castell

Charmcaster (Spellslinger #3)
Charmcaster by Sebstien de Castell
Orbit, 2018
Paperback. 432 pages.

About Charmcaster:

"A failed mage learns that just because he's not the chosen one it doesn't mean he can't be a hero in the third book of an exciting adventure fantasy series from Sebastien de Castell. 

Kellen's life as an outlaw spellslinger is about to get a lot worse. In Gitabria, a miraculous discovery draws spies from all over the continent willing to kill to get their hands on it. 

Swept up in the race for power, Kellen is forced to join the pursuit. But the invention holds a dark secret-one that could spark a war."

Charmcaster is the third book in Sebastien de Castell's planned six book Spellslinger series, and it's this installment that finally felt fully settled and was able to turn this series in new direction. Now that the major events of the first two books have been introduced fully and explored and/or solved, Castell has more room and ability to expand upon the characters themselves and introduce new plot lines.

One thing that I can say for sure about this book is that you're never going to get bored. These pages are action-packed as Kellen and rest of the gang continue to get into some sort of trouble almost constantly. Some of the action and constant obstacles actually got a little old for me at times, but overall it made for a highly entertaining time. In regards to the constant action, I will say that there seemed to be too many plot ideas trying to take center stage at one time that was. There are some diversion from the main plot that was started in the second book, but there are some offshoots that are what made this book feel overly convoluted at times.

Despite the occasionally wandering plot, this was definitely a stronger book than Shadowblack and I'm glad to see these characters continue to explore more and learn new things about both themselves and the world they inhabit. As mentioned before, it seems as though the world and characters have been introduced enough in the exposition of the first two books that Castell can now further enhance the world and add in new places, history, conflict, and magic, all of which he did wonderfully. One thing that I've really enjoyed about this series is how many different and new places, ideas, and magic uses Castell has created. It's a very imaginative world that makes it easy to sink into and enjoy without too much effort.

The characters, as always, are really well-developed and have such distinct, entertaining personalities that I really feel as though I know them. I've also noticed the the secondary characters introduced in subsequent books have only gotten stronger and more multi-dimensional than before, which is something I really appreciate. Kellen continues to be a character that always impresses me with his growth and learned maturity. As readers, we really get to follow Kellen as he learns about the nature of the world he lives in and how to handle his strengths and shortcomings. This kid has had a lot thrown at him in a short amount of time, which makes it doubly impressive how he's dealing with everything. Reichis and Ferius, of course, continue to be shining characters that I always enjoy seeing, and we do start to get to see even more sides of Ferius in this book.

Overall, I've given Charmcaster 3.75 stars! I do plan to continue with the series because it is a genuinely fun, entertaining series. I already have a copy of Soulbinder, book four, staring at me from my shelves, so I plan to dive into it soon!

*I received a copy of Charmcaster courtesy of Orbit Books in exchange for an honest review. This has no effect on my rating of the novel.*

Buy the book: Amazon | Book Depository


  1. I love when a series gets better as you go along.

  2. I'm very behind with this series, having only read the first book, but I'm hoping to catch up this year. So glad you're still enjoying it๐Ÿ˜