Tag Archives: Jude Fisher

Fisher, Jude: The Rose of the World (Fool’s Gold III) (2005)

Cover left: Matt Stawicki Cover right: Steve Stone
Cover left: Matt Stawicki
Cover right: Steve Stone

Boo, hoo 😥 my son and I have finished the trilogy. Each time we finish a series, I wonder if our reading adventures will continue or if this was the last time. Time passes and change comes to us all, even to my family.

Finn (Katla’s twin) is a right bastard. He was the kind of child that tortured cats. You know, that kind of guy. Then life catches up with him. Something happens to us as we grow older. Whether we solidify or become like waves seems arbitrary. Finn solidified and in the end that turned out to be unfortunate for him.

As a reader, I appreciate it when I get a look at the propaganda system an author has grown up during without getting the feeling that the writer is trying to push her points of view down my throat. In fact, I love that because this has not been one of my strengths. Jude Fisher manages it.

So, Death! Death is for many an unwanted companion. For those who encounter Tanto Vingo and Tycho Issian the opposite could be said. The evil twins might be one term that applies to them – except their motivation is different. Tycho is trying to eradicate all the “evil” from the world by burning people while Tanto gets his kicks from torture and mayhem. Just hearing their names brings terror to the hearts of the people of Istrian. A worse combination could probably never have been invented.

Tanto’s favorite victim is Saro. Saro was gifted/cursed with an overly active empathic ability toward the end of Fool’s Gold. Since then, he feels and sees all that goes on in a person at the time that he touches them. I wonder what it must be like to have such an ability? Pretty freaking terrible I would imagine. After Tanto figured out what was going on, Saro was mentally tortured. Once Saro was brought back to Jetra, he was physically and mentally tortured in the prison/torture chambers of the Miseria (Jetra’s infamous prison).

Katla’s physical, emotional and attitudinal journey is huge in The Rose of the World. She continues to be my favorite. Her resilience and stubbornness help her survive what seems to break her sisters from Rockfall. Her mother is the same. Both have to overcome prejudices and fears that have not been encountered previously. Mam likes this gritty little chit of a girl who maintains such a strong will to live true to herself.

The one I pitied the most was Aran (Katla’s father/Bera’s ex-husband). Being caught in a geas is a terrible thing. Once you are caught in its spell there is no escaping until you have done whatever this magically imposed command tells you to do. You will sacrifice anything to get to the end of it without realising how much you are giving up. It is as if something has possessed you and you become unable to impose your own will. Aran’s story is a story of both being a victim of his possession and a victim of circumstances. Poor guy.

The conclusion was magical indeed. Not much reality used to get us there. I haven’t really made up my mind as to how I feel about it yet. But it fits with Ms. Fisher’s intro to the novel.

There were happy parts and sad parts to the novel. Gruesome parts and satisfying parts. A whole lot of obsessed people causing mayhem and destruction. All in all a trilogy I recommend.


  • Paperback: 688 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books; New edition (3 July 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743440420
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743440424
  • Product Dimensions: 11.3 x 17.2 cm

My review of:

  1. Sorcery Rising
  2. Wild Magic

Fisher, Jude: Wild Magic (Fool’s Gold II) (2003)

Jacket Illustration by Steve Stone

I just finished reading Wild Magic to my son. We are enjoying our last opportunities of reading together before he goes off to uni.

Another favorite word, crepuscular, has been added to my leaking brain.

“Aran Aranson pushed himself slowly to his knees, and stared like a hawk into the crepuscular south.”

Some words grab me, making me theirs. Their sound affects different parts of my head and the joy of reading out loud lies in this effect. Jude Fisher’s writing is of the kind that lends itself to be read out loud.

Katla Aranson is my son’s favorite character out of this bunch. It’s funny but she and he are alike in many ways. Both are oddballs among their peer-groups. Both are impatient. Patience is anything but a virtue to these two. Katla and my son are impulsive. That impulsiveness tends to be of the kind, generous and sometimes not-very-well thought through kind. They are both characters that people love and that people have a difficult time labeling.

Katla is my favorite as well. She is at the beginning of her adult life and is full of the vibrancy and courage that one has at 19. I look back at some of the things I did back then and end up having to admire all that I would put myself through to try to enter the adult world. I like that Katla isn’t interested in following the mores of her society. No marriage and children for her. No thank you! Perhaps she ends up changing her mind, but a lot of things are going to have to fall into place for that to happen. Katla has another quality that I admire. She is able to live in the here and now. If she is in a situation that she cannot change, Katla finds something in the here and now that she can work with. Optimist would a term that could be applied to her.

I feel sorry for Katla’s mom and dad. Bera and Aron are both caught up in the geas that Virelai has created and it is tearing them apart. Aron ends up doing something so stupid that it has a devastating effect on most of his loved ones. All because of a geas that itself has been caught up in the return of magic to the world. It is painful to see how self-destructive obsessions can make us. It’s not that we stop caring about how what we do affects others, rather it is a matter of not being allowed to care because our obsession takes so much room in our bodies. Virelai did a terrible thing in creating his geas, geas that will affect thousands of lives (Virelai’s being one of them).

There are a great many other characters who require their own space in the world of Elda and all of their story-lines are important to the plot. The Rose’s return to memory is definitely one of the important ones. But I am more interested in Saro Vingo. Saro finds himself swamped by the effects of the stone he carries and his amplified gifts. The people around him overwhelm him with their passions and fears. Being able to see a person for who they really are and not for who they present to the world is on the surface a gift. But gift is the last thing Saro’s ability ends up feeling like to him. Never in his wildest imaginations did he imagine people to be as base as he has found them. The feelings and thoughts of animals are easier to deal with.

Saro is the kind of person who happens to be a naturally caring one. His true gift is the desire to make the world a better place and to extend kindness to those he meets – even the people who ruthlessly use him.

Jude Fisher writes a highly entertaining tale about some incredibly insane and real people.  If you like Vikings, this is a story for you; and if you like the Osmanians, this is also a story for you.


  • Series: Fool’s Gold
  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books; New edition edition (July 5, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743440412
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743440417

My review of Sorcery Rising