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The Spirit Lens: A Novel of the Collegia Magica [Anglais] [Poche]

Carol Berg
3.8 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (4 commentaires client)
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The Spirit Lens: A Novel of the Collegia Magica + The Daemon Prism: A Novel of the Collegia Magica
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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse



--Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Broché .

Présentation de l'éditeur

Reduced to tending the library at Sabria's last collegia magica, Portier de Savin-Duplais, failed student of magic, 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.


Détails sur le produit

  • Poche: 496 pages
  • Editeur : Roc; Édition : Reprint (4 janvier 2011)
  • Collection : Collegia Magica
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0451463730
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451463739
  • Dimensions du produit: 3,3 x 10,8 x 17,1 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 3.8 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (4 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 1.884 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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En savoir plus sur l'auteur

Carol Berg a ses racines au Texas, dans une famille d'enseignants, de musiciens et de travailleurs des chemins de fer. Elle vit avec son mari au pied des montagnes du Colorado. Elle est publiée pour la première fois en France avec cette trilogie de Fantasy riche et passionnante, dont la qualité d'évocation, le détail psychologique et l'intelligence de l'intrigue rappellent Robin Hobb, Fiona McIntosh, Guy Gavriel Kay ou encore la trilogie de l'Empire de R.E. Feist et Janny Wurts. C'est dire combien Carol Berg tutoie les maîtres du genre avec cette fresque extraordinaire.

Commentaires en ligne 

3.8 étoiles sur 5
3.8 étoiles sur 5
Commentaires client les plus utiles
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Parfait 14 mai 2010
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
J'ai apprécié tous les livres de Carol Berg, malgré quelques réticences liées à l'intensité des violences physiques et un rythme parfois un peu décousu.
Le précédent doublon ("Breath and bones", puis "Flesh and spirit") m'a beaucoup plu. Ce dernier livre (sous-intitulé "A novel of the collegia magica", une suite est sous-entendue, et la fin du récit le confirme) est... parfait.

Le début du livre signe une ambiance plus légère, presque domestiquée, pour un livre de Carol Berg. Dans le paisible royaume de Sabria, la magie n'est plus vraiment valorisée, elle bat même un peu de l'aile et ne fait plus rêver grand monde, d'autant plus qu'elle est presque répudiée par le roi Philippe, qui la tient en piètre estime. La science, qui montre autant de merveilles, est au goût du jour.
La magie noire (celle qui utilise le sang des magiciens pour démultiplier la puissance des enchantements, les saignant jusqu'à leur dernier souffle), qui a sévit durant les anciennes guerres, décimant les lignées de sang magique, est désormais interdite et punie de mort. Toutefois, la magie est toujours tolérée et enseignée à ceux qui manifestent des pouvoirs magiques, au Collegia magica.

Notre héros, Portier, est un homme humble, humilié même, par son incapacité totale à "faire" de la magie, bien qu'il ait en lui le sang des magiciens. Il n'est pas amer, plutôt déprimé, et se terre au fond de la bibliothèque de la collegia magica, dont il est le bibliothécaire.
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2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Une trilogie remarquable de finesse 17 mars 2012
Par Lady Lama TOP 500 COMMENTATEURS VOIX VINE
Format:Poche|Achat vérifié
Cet avis traitera de la trilogie complète du "Collegia Magica":
- tome 1: "the spirit lens"
- tome 2: The Soul Mirror
- tome 3: The Daemon Prism

L'histoire commence comme une simple et tranquille enquête policière auprès de l'entourage d'un roi qui se croit menacé de mort. Et elle se termine 2000 pages plus loin et 6 ans plus tard de manière très lyrique, avec du mysticisme, de la sauvegarde du monde et des actes incroyables. Mieux vaut donc être (très) patient, mais cela en vaut largement la peine.

Commençons par les points qui peuvent faire mal.
Ces trois tomes, très épais, doivent faire dans les 2000 pages au total. C'est de la lecture exigeante, avec un niveau de langue très élevé, une intrigue complexe et des personnages multiples. En plus l'auteur ne cède à aucune facilité: pas d'action échevelée si elle n'est pas nécessaire, pas de personnage incroyable de glamour ou d'héroïsme chevaleresque (enfin si, mais de la manière la plus dissimulée qui soit). Elle utilise des personnages qui sonnent justes dans une histoire qui se veut crédible (même dans un monde fantasmé rempli de magie). Mais en conséquence l'intrigue est parfois d'une lenteur mettant la patience du lecteur à rude épreuve. Complication supplémentaire pour les anglo-saxons, la plupart des personnages ont des noms français, mais pour des francophones, cela passe sans problème.
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2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Sauvé par sa deuxième moitié 24 juin 2011
Format:Poche
J'avais été enchantée par la trilogie des Rai-Kirah mais le début de The Spirit Lens a été, peut-être par comparaison, une douche froide.

A plusieurs reprises j'ai failli laisser tomber car je m'ennuyais ferme. De plus le langage suranné, certes adapté au contexte, n'a rien fait pour arranger les choses.
Autres points négatifs: difficulté à sentir le personnage principal Portier (qui est aussi le narrateur), absence d'atmosphère en dépit de la nature du sujet, à savoir un complot contre le roi impliquant de la magie noire.

Mais j'ai persévéré et je ne le regrette pas. Après une centaine de pages, les faits commencent à converger et l'intrigue prend de la substance. Toutefois, il faut arriver à la moitié du livre pour que cela devienne "vraiment" intéressant.

L'histoire est un savant mélange de magie (sanglante du côté des méchants) et d'investigations dignes de Sherlock Holmes. En effet, notre héros Portier est un raté en terme de magie mais possède un brillant esprit d'analyse et de déduction. Le mystère s'épaissit au fil des pages et l'auteur déploit son talent à tisser des intrigues complexes. Chaque énigme résolue soulève d'autres questions, et elles n'ont pas toutes leur réponse à la fin de l'ouvrage.

Ce livre est difficile à noter. Je ne peux pas aller au-delà de 3 étoiles compte tenu du début, mais je le recommande et j'ai bien l'intention de lire la suite qui, sauf erreur, s'intitule The Soul Mirror.
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Amazon.com: 4.4 étoiles sur 5  40 commentaires
45 internautes sur 46 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 An Engaging Fantasy Thriller... 9 janvier 2010
Par M. Natisin - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
In Carol Berg's The Spirit Lens, the first novel of the Collegia Magica trilogy, no one is as they seem and a pretty face may be a mere illusion masking a wicked heart...

Portier de Duplais, former student of magic, current head-librarian and obscure relation to Phillipe, the King of Sabria, is summoned unexpectedly and charged to discovery who is behind an attempt on the King's life. In his new position as agente confide, Portier is unable to trust anyone, even his fellow agentes. Unfortunately, the mystery isn't so simple as an assassination plot. It involves the abduction of Phillipe's closest friend, the acquisition of three very strange magic objects taken from Phillipe's would-be assassin, necromancy, multiple murders, untimely accidents and a network of intricate deception. With all fingers pointed accusingly at Philippe's wife, the Queen Eugenie, Portier must uncover who among the growing list of suspects masks their evil intent and who is truly innocent before his own life (and soul) becomes forfeit to the long-buried magic uncovered by his probing.

At first, The Spirit Lens is a barrage of names that I found to be a bit overwhelming. However, as the book goes on, each and every one of these seemingly innocuous people has great relevance to the plot. The Spirit Lens is a plot-driven tale with allot of ground to cover, and there is absolutely no time for dallying. In the prologue Portier is handed the Problem at Hand and from chapter one to its conclusion, we are hurtling together down a twisting path to solve that problem. As the reader, I was kept guessing, making hypothesis, and forced to change my mind when a lead didn't follow through--much like Portier.

There are two points that prevented me from giving this book a five-star review, though. First: While I found Berg's side characters interesting from the get-go, it took nearly half the volume to warm up to Portier. I just couldn't get a firm grasp of the kind of person he is. This is very surprising after reading books such as Berg's Rai-Kirah trilogy and the Lighthouse Duet, both narrated by men with very definitive points of view.

Second: The mystery is the driving force behind the novel and is unquestionably gripping (I devoured the entire novel in two days). However, because of the rapid pace of the book, I felt that I never got a firm grasp of the world that Sabria resides in. Once again, this was disappointing because in the aforementioned books by Berg, the world-building is expert. In those books I felt I had a firm grasp of the cultures, the time-periods, everything. The series are steeped in definitive moods that are unique to their individual stories. In The Spirit Lens, I didn't have that strong sense of place and time. Certainly, the characters have french-sounding names and their mannerism hint toward Renaissance-era Italy, but those connections are not very descriptive of the world Sabria rests in.

The conclusion of The Spirit Lens sets up nicely for the next book,with some loose threads neatly clipped and others left flapping in the wind. There is much promised for book two and I hope further volumes will expand upon this world Berg has begun to create, and bring Portier's personality out. Despite my complaints, I imagine the revelations in store will continue to surprise. I eagerly await the next volume of the Collegia Magica trilogy.
24 internautes sur 24 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Superb 19 janvier 2010
Par M. Jacobs - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
I feel like a broken record every time I sit down to write a review of another one of Carol Berg's books. I'm convinced at this point that she's the best fantasy author working today. Her plots are consistently excellent, her protagonists fascinating, and her world-building superb.

This novel introduces us to three new heroes: Portier, librarian turned sleuth, tasked by the king to investigate a lethal magical conspiracy; Ilario, the queen's half-brother and court fop; and Dante, a mage of tremendous ability and uncertain temperament. Watching these three interact is worth the price of admission all on its own. Unlike an earlier reviewer, I found Portier to be an extremely engaging narrator, and was right there with him as he doggedly wrestled with the crippling aftereffects of a decade-old trauma. As with all of Ms. Berg's heroes, he and the others possess an innate decency that it's impossible not to respond to. (Even Dante, I think, in spite of what he finds it necessary to do to further their investigation.)

As for the plot--Ms. Berg is careful to seed the ground with a maddening array of clues regarding what the conspiracy is aiming for and who might be involved in it, without giving very much away. I have a feeling that all of this is leading up to what will eventually be a tremendous finale, and I'm already impatiently awaiting her next volume.

Highly recommended. Really, you can't do better than this if you're a fantasy fan.
13 internautes sur 13 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Engaging 21 janvier 2010
Par Antiquarian - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
While in many ways this story had many of the "usual suspects" I feel that Ms. Berg has woven them together in just the right way as to make them new and interesting. The world of "Spirit Lens" is a lovely mix of science and magic on the verge of change. Feeling very much like fithteenth century Europe without being an "alternative history".

As always Ms. Berg has masterfully used the first person voice weaving a tale that feels as if you are hearing it from a good friend. She builds the tension constantly and you come to suspect everyone; even after you've finished reading. Which leads to my only complaint - that I have to wait for the next book!

This books is closer to the feel of her The Bridge of D'Arnath books rather than the Lighthouse series.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A fantastic introduction to a compelling new world 18 janvier 2010
Par Jarod Wilson - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
I am consistently impressed by Carol Berg's skill at crafting deep, intricate worlds full of mystery and intrigue, with memorable, unique characters and unpredictable plots. "The Spirit Lens" is no different. Like most of her previous novels, it is told from a first-person perspective by a narrator who is shamed, fallen, and largely overlooked by the world around him. It also continues Ms. Berg's engaging tradition of protagonists pursuing answers to deep, complex mysteries and antagonists of unknown identity; indeed, this novel is the most direct "detective" story she has written to date. Portier de Savin-Duplais, distant cousin to the king, is charged with discovering the truth behind a failed assassination attempt. He is aided by the queen's foppish half-brother and a wildly independent mage.

From the start, we are drawn into a world of dangerous duplicity, where no one can truly be trusted, not even the fellow investigators. The characters are all very vivid and fully rendered, with flaws and complexities that make it difficult to label anyone unequivocally "good" or "evil." Some of the mysteries turn out just the way we expect them to, others surprise us completely, but in a believable way. In other words, this is a very well-crafted mystery that keeps the reader guessing.

One of the strengths of this story, compared with some of Ms. Berg's other works, is that we are eased into the world at just the right pace. In the past, I have been somewhat overwhelmed by the myriad names of people and places, as well as other intricacies of the world of the books--especially in the first several chapters. "The Spirit Lens," while maintaining a quick and engaging pace, manages to introduce people and places gradually, allowing us to keep them all straight without difficulty. In addition, the larger, deeper mysteries to be solved--also a staple of Ms. Berg's books--reveal themselves gradually, which also helps keep the plot from getting overwhelmingly complicated.

Lastly, I am impressed by the ending of the book. When reading the first book of a trilogy or series, I always fear that I will be left feeling unsatisfied by its conclusion, with a compelling cliffhanger but no sense of resolution. Fortunately, "The Spirit Lens" manages to wrap up enough of the threads of its plot arc to feel largely resolved, but leaves plenty of mysteries still to be solved in the coming books. I eagerly await the next installment, and I do not feel cheated with an incomplete story.

My recommendation: For anyone who has read and enjoyed books by Carol Berg before, this one will surely not disappoint. It remains to be seen whether this will become my favorite Carol Berg series, but it definitely has potential. For those new to her novels, I think this is as good a place to start as any--that is, unless you just don't have the patience to wait around until the remaining books are published to find out the rest of the story. Happy reading!
10 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 Very slow with uninspiring characters 23 janvier 2011
Par K. Eckert - Publié sur Amazon.com
Let me start by saying I really enjoy Carol Berg as a writer. I absolutely loved her Transformation (Rai Kirah) series and also loved the Cartamandua Legacy (The Lighthouse Duet). But, for some reason, I had a very difficult time with this book. I didn't care about the plot, did not like the characters, and struggled through each page.

This book is about Portier de Savin-Duplais; a failed magical student who is called upon to help solve the mystery of an attempted assassination of the king. Joining him in this investigation are a foppish Noble named Ilario de Sylvae and brilliant (but grumpy) sorceror named Dante.

The premise sounded excellent and I really did enjoy Berg's intricate descriptions of the surroundings and the intricate magic system. I also enjoyed that this book is written in at a higher literary level. That being said I only read to page 100 and had a lot of problems even getting that far into this book.

I was not drawn into the mystery to find out who wanted to assassinate the King. The King was not likable, and to be honest, I really didn't care if someone assassinated him or not. He doesn't seem to do that good of a job running the kingdom, so I just didn't care. The mystery behind the Spirit Lens was intriguing but not intriguing enough to keep me hooked on the story.

I also did not enjoy the characters. Portier is so self-deprecating and spineless that I was kind of hoping for something (anything) to happen to him; he just never stands up for himself and bumbles through the book. Ilario is over stereo-typed as a pompous noble fop, I think he was supposed to add humor to the story, but for me he feel flat. Dante is the only character that redeems this book; the portion of the book where he was introduced into the story was entracing, but then he is not the focus anymore and I lost interest again.

This book is very long-winded. I loved beautiful descriptions, but that was taken to the extreme in this book. I found myself skipping full paragraphs and was still able to follow the story fine. Then I would stop back-up and reread what I had skipped just to confirm I hadn't missed anything (I hadn't). Around the point where I stopped more and more Frenchlike noble names are being thrown at the reader. All these names refer to characters that I have no frame of reference for, can't relate to, and can't remember.

In the end I just lost patience with it all. I was having a lot of trouble keeping my eyes open to read more than a page or two at a time. I know Berg's books are set up very deliberately, but for some reason I just can't handle it with this one. I really wasn't enjoying it and I have a ton of other books to read so I stopped.

Overall this book just was not my thing; which is not to say it was poorly written...at times the writing was quite beautiful. I was just not drawn into the plot, did not like the characters, and thought the pacing was way too slow. If you are into deliberately paced fantasy mysteries this may be the book for you. If you like your plot a bit more frantic with deep characterization I would look elsewhere. If you are interested in reading books by Berg I would start with the Rai Kirah series; that characters and plot were much more engaging.
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