A Crucible of Souls - start of the Sorcery Ascendant Sequence

  • Posted on: 25 May 2018
  • By: Lore

A Crucible of Souls Book CoverMitchell Hogan starts off the Sorcery Ascendant Sequence in a pretty standard way. Caldan is an orphan who was raised by monks on an isolated island after his parents were brutally slain. Caldan is a unique individual, as he is both "touched by the ancestors" and has a sorcerer's well, which is very rare combination. When he comes of age the monks reveal to him that his parents left him some powerful magical artifacts and when they give them to him his world changes. His powers begin to manifest and he finds that he must leave his isolated existence with the monks and make his way in the real world. Although this is a bit of a trope, I have always enjoyed learning about a fantasy world and the magical system within it from the perspective of a character learning it at the same time, and it works quite well here.

Caldan has always had a talent for sorcery and the monastery where he was raised actually provided him with excellent training in many disciplines related to the craft; however, that being said, it is more of a hobby to him than any kind of expected profession. When he is thrust out into the real world Caldan quickly learns just how limited his life experiences are, and that his only possessions of worth, the two trinkets handed down by his parents, don't seem to provide him with any useful advantages. One thing leads to another and Caldan quickly finds himself a naive immigrant in a city that comes under siege in a new war, and thus we have the main story line for the series.

A Crucible of Souls is a strong start to the Sorcery Ascendant Sequence and as Caldan learns what it means to be both "touched by the ancestors" and a young sorcerer the story begins to blossom and take off. This novel does not provide any sort of resolution by the time it ends, so you should only pick it up if you are open to reading the entire trilogy. For audiobook fans, Oliver Wyman does an excellent job as the narrator and his array of voices helps bring to life the many different characters.