Book Review

[Review] Spellslinger by Sebastien de Castell

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Spellslinger [Spellslinger #1]

written by Sebastien de Castell

416 Pages

Published by Hot Key Books

Published on May 4th 2017

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Star cup small

Star cup small

Star cup small

Star cup small


Summary (from Goodreads)

Magic is a con game.

Kellen is moments away from facing his first mage’s duel and the start of four trials that will make him a spellcaster. There’s just one problem: his magic is gone. As his sixteenth birthday approaches, Kellen falls back on his cunning in a bid to avoid total disgrace. But when a daring stranger arrives in town, she challenges Kellen to take a different path. Ferius Parfax is one of the mysterious Argosi – a traveller who lives by her wits and the three decks of cards she carries. She’s difficult and unpredictable, but she may be Kellen’s only hope…


Oh man, this book you guys!

Characters: Good!
Plot: Good!
Writing: Good!

Spellslinger is about a 16 year old boy, Kellen, who needs to master his magic in order to pass the tests that will let him become a mage, or end up as a servant. The problem is, boy gotz 0 magic. None. But Kellen is smart and cunning, and maybe he can just… fake it? Sure, that will probably work.

The best thing about Spellslinger, is that it is not full of all that typical, Chosen-One -with-all-the-power-is-the-only-one-who-can-save-the-world malarkey – Kellen kinda wishes he had all the power. Hell, he wishes he had some of the power. But alas, he does not, and I don’t know why but that makes me love him even more. I think I have a thing for cinnamon rolls.

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Pictured: Kellen*

But Kellen is not the only star of the show! How does an incredibly feisty squirrel-cat sound? Confusing? Terrifying? Strangely adorable? Yes. All of the above. Reichis is quite possibly my favourite magical creature OF ALL TIME. I LOVE REICHIS! Sure, he spends most of the book threatening to eat people’s eyeballs, but which one of us hasn’t done that at one point or other in our lives?

Before I go, can I take a moment to talk about de Castell’s writing? Because, my God, if I could marry his writing, I would. What always wins me over is good, sharp humour, and de Castell’s is just down right brilliant. I laugh-snorted more times than I am proud of.

I also listened to the audiobook of Spellslinger, and the narrator was incredible. I loved his portrayal of Kellen. He really made the book 200% better, if that’s even possible, which might not be, I’m not good at math. Anyway, I fully recommend the audiobook to anyone who’ll listen to me, and a few who won’t. You know who you are.

Buy it, borrow it, skip it? Buy it! Buy it now!

Perfect for: Everyone! Ok, anyone who loves magic, adorable cinnamon roll protagonists, and eating eyeballs.

Happy reading!

*May not be accurate depiction of character.


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