Just a head’s up some of the things I talk about in this book may be from The Warlock, my quotes got merged and I’m still not sure what was in which book because I re-read them so fast.
One of the things you have to be careful of reading this series is that Scott doesn’t throw away names. Even the minor characters that he only mentions in passing are incredibly important and historical factual philosophers, warriors and politicians (or at least the immortals are). From ancient Chinese philosophers to British authors (I forgot to mention Shakespeare last post), Scott must’ve mined history for so many of the characters he uses/mentions.
In this book, Sophie and Josh’s life/world not only falls apart, but it is mercilessly ripped apart. Their eyes are opened to a number of things which begin the processes that end the series. These processes and the truths/lies they reveal are what had me hesitant about re-reading the series. They’re WONDERFUl the first time you read the series, but going back to the series it makes them a bit less so.
This book sees the more in-depth looks at some of the American immortals including Billy the Kid, Black Hawk and Virginia Dare. Billy brings a light heartedness to being immortal and Virginia Dare (always Virginia Dare, never just Virginia I say) brings a deathly seriousness to the books. [For those of you who don’t know who Virginia Dare is, I recommend perusing the Wikipedia page, but in essence she was the “first white Christian child born in the British Colonies in the US and later her and the remaining members disappeared without a trace leaving only the word “Croatan” carved into the remains of the fort.}
There are evil characters and there are dangerous characters, but almost all of them have an Elder master. Virginia Dare does not, she has an incredibly powerful magical artifact and lives/works/speaks with a no-nonsense attitude.
She’s up there in power with Perenelle, but her attitude, as a result of her upbringing, and her chaotic/anarchic view on people sees her aligned with Dee for better or worse in the series. it comes as no surprise that she teaches Josh one of the elemental magics and does it in a style unlike any we’ve seen so far.
“Now, I know there is a certain formula of words that are used when students are being taught the Elemental Magics, about how each magic is stronger than the other—but I’m afraid I don’t know those words, and I don’t believe them anyway. What you have to remember is that no matter who taught you, magic is as strong as the will of the user and the strength of their aura. Great emotions—love, hate, terror—intensify any magical working. But be careful. These same emotions raging through your body can also consume your aura. And once your aura is gone, then so are you!” (Loc. 3671)
I also haven’t talked about the Archons. There’s an entire lineage of being that have inhabited the universe including: humans, next generation, elders, archons, ancients and earth lords. Many of the magical artifacts and technology come from the ancients and earth lords, but the archons seem to be much more evil/emotionally driven, because they have fallen from their powerful states. The two we interact with are Cernunnos (Celtic) and Coatlicue (Aztec/Mexican) (Wikipedia links). They are intense and are not aligned with Dark Elders, but the Dark Elders do attempt to use them which ends up in chaos every time.
Recommendation: Same for the entire series, if you’re reading them for the first time I’m sure you will LOVE them! The myths and legends Scott brings to life throughout the series are so well crafted and have such great personalities they stay with you. The only downside of the series, and this is coming from a re-read perspective, is that it’s hard to ignore what you know at the end. It was really hard not to let what I know about the end of the series affect my re-read of the series. For a lot of the time I was able to ignore it, but it was always there.
Opening Line: “I am frightened.”
Closing Line: “We’ve lost him to the Dark Elders.” (Whited out to avoid spoilers, highlight to read.)
Additional Quotes from The Necromancer
“‘I became immortal in the year 1527,’ the Italian said, glancing at the American. ‘I was alive when Columbus claimed discovery of this country. I am not the oldest immortal—I am older than Dee, but the Alchemyst Flamel is older than I, Duns Scotus is even older still, and Mo-Tzu older still. Gilgamesh is older than all of us.’” (Loc. 946)
“Follow your hearts. Protect one another, trust one another, because, at the end of the day, all of these people want something from you, or want you to do something for them, or be something that you are not. Your only responsibility is to one another.” (Loc. 1429)
“But it is true that as a race, the Elders are not entirely comfortable with some of the lighter emotions. Centuries of power and authority stripped us of much of our joy in life.” Loc. 1824)
“The creature’s mouth opened to reveal a maw of needle-sharp teeth. ‘I’ve not had breakfast yet.’ The sphinx looked at Machiavelli. ‘Arrogance always tastes sweet, like chicken. If you will not give him to me, then let me buy him from you. I will give you a fortune for this humani.’” (Loc. 4031)