M lusine M lusine a city of secrets and lies pleasure and pain magic and corruption and destinies lost and found Felix Harrowgate is a dashing highly respected wizard But his aristocratic peers don t know h

  • Title: Mélusine
  • Author: Sarah Monette
  • ISBN: 9780441014170
  • Page: 425
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • M lusine a city of secrets and lies, pleasure and pain, magic and corruption and destinies lost and found Felix Harrowgate is a dashing, highly respected wizard But his aristocratic peers don t know his dark past how his abusive former master enslaved him, body and soul, and trained him to pass as a nobleman Within the walls of the Mirador Melusine s citadel ofM lusine a city of secrets and lies, pleasure and pain, magic and corruption and destinies lost and found Felix Harrowgate is a dashing, highly respected wizard But his aristocratic peers don t know his dark past how his abusive former master enslaved him, body and soul, and trained him to pass as a nobleman Within the walls of the Mirador Melusine s citadel of power and wizardry Felix believed he was safe He was wrong Now, the horrors of his previous life have found him and threaten to destroy all he has since become Mildmay the Fox is used to being hunted Raised as a kept thief and trained as an assassin, he escaped his Keeper long ago and lives on his own as a cat burglar But now he has been caught by a mysterious foreign wizard using a powerful calling charm And yet the wizard was looking not for Mildmay but for Felix Harrowgate Thrown together by fate, the broken wizard Felix and the wanted killer Mildmay journey far from Melusine through lands thick with strange magics and terrible demons of darkness But it is the shocking secret from their pasts, linking them inexorably together, that will either save them, or destroy them.

    One thought on “Mélusine”

    1. Hrm. A hundred pages into this novel, I had to come back here to see if my friend's review was really is as glowing as I remembered it to be. I'm baffled.I'm struggling to keep interested in this book. This is a poorly-explained world, where magical and social elements are introduced in passing, but not fleshed out; the book itself is structured with a bizarrely flip-flopping POV, reminiscent of a soap opera, which changes so frequently as to prevent me from getting interesting in either of the [...]

    2. Mélusine suffers from two narrators: Felix Harrowgate and Mildmay the Fox. I say “suffers” because Monette switches between the two perspectives more frequently than Bill Nye drops mad science truth. Each chapter is about thirty or fifty pages in this paperback edition, but perspective can happen as often as once every page. Sometimes the characters barely get a few paragraphs in before Monette switches to the other narrator. Consequently, instead of feeling like I’m watching two separate [...]

    3. I picked this book up on a recommendation from one of my favorite authors - Charlaine Harris - and I wasn't disappointed. Sarah Monette does a marvelous job pulling us into this new world. For instance, if the names she gives to months sound oddly familiar, it's because they are borrowed from the French Revolution's republican calendar system. This deft touch, in addition to many other captivating details, creates an alternate universe with a historical past that is both familiar and exotic. Hal [...]

    4. Rating: 3.5 starsMelusine is a very difficult book to review, especially for a M/M book blog. As a high fantasy adventure, I would say this book is top-notch. As a M/M romance, I would give it a two thumbs…down. But regardless of how one would tag this story, my recommendation is this: patience.Taking place in a fantasy world, the book follows two different characters in their own respective and separate yet slowly intertwining, plots. Felix is a powerful wizard of Melusine, with a past that h [...]

    5. Mélusine is a fabulous debut fantasy novel, about a pair of unlikely heroes in a richly imagined world. Felix Harrowgate is a wizard of the Mirador, powerful and respected until a long-held secret is divulged which drives him back to his evil master, Malkar, and into insanity. Meanwhile, the thief Mildmay the Fox is drawn into intrigue when he meets Ginevra, a beautiful shopgirl who wants him to steal back some items from her former lover. Eventually, the separate stories of Felix and Mildmay c [...]

    6. This review seems full of nothing but criticism, so I'll frame it by saying that I didn't hate it, I actually enjoyed it, though you might not figure out why. Monette's involvement in recent blog affairs, plus her online present and most peeps in my environs feeling they have to read this book, made me hesitant to list it at all.Lots of the genre-usual invented names right from the start, perhaps not overly much compared to other fantasy books, but still more than I think necessary, ever. The sp [...]

    7. Fantasy. Something's rotten in Melusine and the Virtu, a collection of spells that protects the city's wizards, has been destroyed, sending the city into disorder. The story's told by two narrators: Felix -- wizard, drama queen, perpetual victim -- and Mildmay -- thief for hire, regular guy, and a hundred times less whiny than Felix. I hated Felix. I spent most of the book wishing he'd shut up and go away. He's a big wet blanket, cowardly and useless, and would be perfectly at home in a bad piec [...]

    8. This book was a beautiful, unexpected love. I have bumpy relationship with fantasy. Some of my all-time favorite books are fantasy, but at the same time I DNF'd more fantasy books than probably in any other genre. And I don't want to say that ah ha, 'Melusine' was a better book than all those I tossed away. It's just that it was a book that clicked with me. In every possible way. I saw in some other reviews the things that didn't work for people, and I understand it, but I think they were exactl [...]

    9. While reading this book, I started to think of it as a whimsical runner in a marathon. Sometimes it jogged, sometimes it sprinted, sometimes it stopped to chase butterflies in the field, but surprisingly, it never fell on its face, and when it frolicked gaily (fear my puniness) across the finish line, it still managed to look fabulous, so it gets four stars.Metaphors aside, I know this book is part of a four-book series, but I agree with others reviewers on this site in that it felt like a lot o [...]

    10. 3.5 rounded up to 4, because I liked the whole a great deal more than the individual parts. This introductory book to the series is definitely about character and world building, and I'm very curious to see where it goes next.

    11. I am reviewing a DTB version.Wow! That was the longest prologue I've ever read!Now I can go back to page 1 and start enjoying the book.Many reviews that mention re-reads make sense now.*****Few thoughts on the book, the writing, the characters, the shenanigans. No spoilers, just want to keep my outrage contained in the spoiler tags.(view spoiler)[Tho I like it when authors dump you right in the middle of things and you have to start running the moment you hit the ground, this was not the case. I [...]

    12. The first in a series called the Doctrine of Labyrinths, I can confirm that the series is well named. The plot meanders in parts, gets dead-ended in others and whole sections of interesting areas and characters get split off indiscriminately, while the actual resolution of the book is in the narrowest terms possible.Felix Harrowgate is an arrogant fop of a wizard whose life in the wizard's castle of Mirador in the country of Mélusine quickly takes a dramatic turn for the worse due to the machin [...]

    13. I’m finding this book especially interesting because the main character gets driven insane in the first quarter – and then remains one of the narrators for the rest of the book. But even though he’s insane, he’s still understandable – it’s like reading the world at a slant. I find it fascinating when you can get that across through writing style and description.

    14. After reading a very mixed bag of reviews, I've come to the conclusion that Melusine (and the whole Doctrine of Labyrinths) are books you either love or hate, with very little room in the middle. I confess I personally tend towards the former. The terminology is difficult to grapple with at first, because the style of narration leaves little room for explanation of the plethora of colloquialisms peppered throughout the novel. However, if you bear with it, it does become much easier to understand [...]

    15. Read again in 2016 (part of my annual holiday wallowing in re-reads) and I'm still in agreement with my original review, with perhaps more emphasis on the extreme angst, particularly at the end, good grief.---------------------------------------------------------------------March 2012 review:So Felix is a wizard who’s driven mad when his evil master uses him to destroy a powerful magical thingamajig. Mildmay is a thief/assassin who gets hired by another wizard to track down Felix, for complica [...]

    16. This is a wonderfully imaginative fantasy, beautifully written and realized. Although one main character is gay, the other is not, and this is not a romance. That doesn't mean it isn't infused with a stubborn, heartfelt, irritated, immovable commitment on Mildmay's part. And a flashy, extravagant, mind-damaged, egotistical, painfully-undermined caring on Felix's part. The relationship between these two men, as much as the progression of the plot and their individual characters, keep the reader g [...]

    17. I struggled with this one some. I liked the two characters, and I particularly liked the way the author used Felix's POV once he was insane, but holy crap it needed a plot. Where were they going? What were they doing? How were they going to meet each other? Was the book description EVER going to happen? There were things that were happening along the way and each time we got a little more insight into the characters but there just didn't seem to be any point to the story. Ironically, about 250 p [...]

    18. There was a certain amount of clumsiness here. It took way too long to begin to care about what was happening to the protagonists, and way too long to develop the plot, there was way too much name dropping of irrelevant characters from ancient history, and way too many dropped characters and story-lines; but in the end it did manage to pull itself together into a book I wanted to keep reading (although from an agonizingly slow beginning the ending was almost rushed!). Yet now she finally got my [...]

    19. What a fantastic book! It took me at least a couple of hundred pages to get into the story and start to care for Felix and Mildmay, but then all of a sudden I couldn't put it down and desperately wanted things to get easier for the both of them. I've just started book 2, The Virtu, and also bought the other 2 books in the series, I can't wait to get stuck in!

    20. I haven't been reading nearly as much Fantasy as I used to (there was a time when it was ALL I'd read, excluding books for school or uni), but I have quite a few (understatement) on my shelves, unread. This one was recommended by a friend who had several sleepless nights in a row while she tore through all four books. Hard to ignore a rec like that! I know people have complaints about this book, but I felt like my faith in Fantasy was rekindled after reading this.In the city of Mélusine, in Mar [...]

    21. Dark, tortured fantasy fans, rejoice! Sarah Monette is here for you with a stellar new world, a wonderfully academic vision of magic (lots of different schools of thought, all of which think the others are nuts), obnoxious aristocrats, thieves, and two compelling protagonists who are destined to have a long, volatile, satisfying relationship.Felix Harrowgate was plucked from the slums by Malkar, a powerful wizard (and an incredible bastard) and trained to pass as an aristocrat. On the night his [...]

    22. (re-posted from theturnedbrain/)How is it fair that books like, well, I don’t think I need to name any names, I’m sure we can all think of at least one book that defies all laws of good writing and yet still has a huge fanbase. So how is it that books like that, with their sparkling vampires and their last suppers get printed and reprinted and reprinted again, while excellent books like Sarah Monette’s Melusine go out of print?I had one hell of a time tracking this book down, let me tell y [...]

    23. This review should probably have accompanied a 5 star rating but it does not, intentionally so.Had this been an entertainment-only attempt, I could write line after line with praises about the clever plotting, the fine, elegant writing, the accurate characterization, the originality of the setting, etc. etc. etc. This IS a good book, after all, a quality fantasy you might want to cherish (and read only when you are in the right mood: to enjoy it you need more than the standard attention).Problem [...]

    24. Read while traveling. I didn't have a good reading environment for enjoying this until midway through, and then I was hooked. I need to reread the first half at least, though. I have a feeling I missed some important details.Okay, I've reread enough to write a coherent review.Mélusine was a much more intense, disturbing, and violent book than I was prepared for, and so reading it was in some places extremely disturbing. But if you don't get squicked by rape, torture, mindfucks, or insanity, the [...]

    25. The first half of the book is flawless, but the second half is really a different story altogether, and it's really not quite as good. Still, I'll definitely be following Monette! (Melusine was her first book; she's already published two sequels, which I'm on the lookout for.)Set in the dark-fantasy city of Melusine, which of course is full of decadence, crime, romance, wealth & glamour and dire poverty - not to mention magic and danger - the main character is Mildmay, a young, scarred, dang [...]

    26. This book is one part terrific novel, and one part huh? I definitely recommend you have the sequel, The Virtu on hand when you read it, because this is one of those books that feels like it was arbitrarily split in half. Although, honestly, there are ends left hanging even when you read both books, and now that I'm reading the third one, I'm still not certain they will be tied off. I found the world of Melusine to be gorgeously conceived and complex to the point of utter confusion---the calendri [...]

    27. People complaining that Melusine reads like a build-up/introduction to later books There is a reason it's a fucking series. It's not like those cases of "oh looks like this one sold well, let's write a sequel or BETTER make it a trilogy".

    28. Where to start? Firstly, did the book work for me? The answer is a resounding YES! A caveat: this book is what is known as 'dark fantasy' and it is, while slightly humourous in places, very, very dark. Nasty, nasty things happen to the characters, things that only in the depths of depraved humanity would people inflict on others. Sometimes I'm not sure which is worst, specific, vivid details or my imagination filling in the gaps. This book had both!Interestingly for a fantasy book (or at least t [...]

    29. I came thisclose to putting this book before finishing 50 pages of it. The only thing that kept me from donating it to Goodwill was one of the two main characters, Mildmay. Mildmay starts the book off before the first chapter in the Introduction… I can tell you that Mildmay had me hooked, if not to the story, to his character at that point. But more on him in a moment…Why did I almost put this book down? There is a m/m rape scene that turned my stomach. I do not like reading rape scenes and [...]

    30. I really liked this book (so much so that I picked up the second book the day after I finished the first one). As with any book that has constantly alternating points of view, I found it distracting at first but eventually I was able to settle into it. (It's a personal preference. It works for some people and not for others). The world is an interesting place, though I think the nonstandard measurement of time is unnecessary and irritating. I did not guess the connection between Mildmay and Feli [...]

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