Most kids would do anything to pass the Iron Trial.
Not Callum Hunt. He wants to fail.
All his life, Call has been warned by his father to stay away from magic. If he succeeds at the Iron Trial and is admitted into the Magisterium, he is sure it can only mean bad things for him.
So he tries his best to do his worst – and fails at failing.
Now the Magisterium awaits him. It’s a place that’s both sensational and sinister, with dark ties to his past and a twisty path to his future.
This series has some people comparing it to Harry Potter. After all, it is about a magic school. And there is an evil dude who conquers death. But in my opinion, comparing The Magisterium to Hogwarts is like comparing a Porsche to a Boeing 757. The stories are so different, there is no comparison. Both excellent series but for very different reasons.
Callum Hunt is terrified. His father has told him how horrible mages are and how dangerous magic is since he can remember. Unfortunately, when called to the Iron Trial, nobody can say no. The thing is to flunk the test. Then they won’t let you in. Or so his father thinks. Unfortunately, that doesn’t work. Call gets the worst grade of anyone in the trial and still ends up in the Magisterium where he’s sure he’ll get lost, or hurt, or most likely killed.
That’s how The Iron Trial starts. Call’s adventures at the school are dark. There are enemies who appear as friends, magic only the few can control, having to separate sand by color for his lessons. And even worse, not understanding why his father seems to hate him until the end of the book.
In The Iron Trial, we meet the Enemy of Death, chaos-riddled wolves, demons made out of lava, and a lizard names Warren. There isn’t a lot about their lessons – we don’t see how the magic is learned which I found the least favorable part of the book. After three weeks of sorting sand, suddenly Call knows how to fight off a herd of Wyverns? Didn’t make sense to me. But the world of The Magisterium is amazing and wonderful and definitely has me hooked.
I’ll admit, the part that caught and grabbed me was from the Iron Trial itself. Callum goes in with the others to take one of the tests and the following math problem meets his gaze:
“A dragon and a wyvern set out at 2pm from the same cavern, headed in the same direction. The average speed of the dragon is 30 mph slower than twice the speed of the wyvern. In 2 hours, the dragon is 20 miles ahead of the wyvern. Find the flight speed of the dragon, factoring in that the wyvern is bent on revenge.”
Anyone who can write such a hilarious math word problem so has my attention. A great start to the series. Have the second downloaded and will soon be starting it.
The narrator did a fantastic job and I’m thrilled to see he has narrated the second book as well.
Story Rating: 4 stars
Audio Rating: 5 stars
Overall Rating: 4 stars