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Thursday, March 19, 2015

Journeymage is live at Amazon! Spoiler discussion thread!

Find it here:

Or click here:

Remember, it's up at a special price for a limited time: $5.49.  Why?  Because until sometime around Saturday morning, when you buy the book I'll donate a dollar to BSA Troop 439, a small rural Boy Scout Troop operating out of the Bahama Ruritan Club in Bahama, NC.  I'm Assistant Scoutmaster for the troop, and both of my sons are Scouts.  Since at least some of the inspiration for Journeymage came from last summer's camp at Raven Knob in Mt. Airy, NC, I think it's only fair that the troop benefit from the resulting intellectual property.  I'll reduce it to the proper price when the special is done, and anyone who has moral objections to donating to the BSA can purchase it then - or get it through Amazon Prime.  I'm only counting direct sales, not lends.

Best yet, I think I can get my company to match the donation.  Thus is the power of the Spellmonger . . . 

I'm pretty happy with the book.  I wrote it in about 6 weeks, coming straight off of Hawkmaiden and High Mage, and I think it's a good diversion.  Serious - nay, even major - stuff happens that has implications for the war and such, and we learn far too much about the Kasari people.  In terms of "naughty" level, I'd class it as "ribald" at most.  No one has sex on stage.  But at least one character is a little on the frustrated side.  The inspiration of the book can be summed up as "The Children's Crusade meets Follow Me Boys meets Game of Thrones", with some whacky magic here and there.  Min learns a lot of important things about himself, does a lot of important things for the long-term future of the kingdom and the war, and learns far too much about the Kasari culture.  

Here's the blurb: 

Minalan’s Summer Vacation! 

What does the most powerful wizard in the world do after the war is over? Despite the hordes of goblins still ready to ravage human lands, King Rard has signed a treaty with them, so Minalan is forbidden from taking advantage of their weakened state. Most would take a well-deserved rest over the summer . . . but Minalan and his household are busy repaying a favor owed to the tribal Kasari for their help in the war, and the Spellmonger pays his debts. So Minalan spends his summer sneaking two thousand Kasari children through enemy lines, goblin territory, hostile Wilderlords, and through some of the roughest territory in the Five Duchies toward salvation.  
But the Spellmonger soon learns that not even the help of a goddess is going to be sufficient to contend with the realities of the quest. Despite his best efforts and some of the most advanced magic seen since the Magocracy, the march attracts enemies . . . and far too many friends.  
For when the desperate refugees of the war-torn Alshari Wilderlands see the well-fed legions of Kasari march by, they cannot help but follow, even if they have no idea of the destination. Any life is better than the hopeless existence they've lived avoiding starvation and the goblins’ stewpot. And the promise of hope the great march of the Spellmonger’s children offers is just too good to pass up. Security and the promise of a brighter future lie just on the other side of the border with the duchy of Castal.  
The problem is that the Duke of Castal, Prince Tavard, who is also Minalan's titular overlord, is dead-set against a single Alshari refugee crossing his frontier – and he’s assembled a small army to stop any from doing so. With political pressure high and the very gods maneuvering behind the scenes, it’s going to take some clever magic, some inspired legal maneuvering, and some serious effort to pull off this miracle . . . but that’s the kind of job the Spellmonger does in Journeymage!

This is not the Meanwhile, Back In Sevendor book many of you want - that will be Enchanter.  Nor is it a bloodbath.  This book is essentially the beginning of the second cycle of novels, covering Minalan's growing magical and political sophistication.  But if you like world building, I think you'll enjoy this one.  It's shortish (140,000 words) but pretty involved.  And if you get off on logistics and supply issues, you'll be in heaven.

Thanks for reading my stuff.  And if you really want to boost me and my stuff, then go leave a review at Amazon - and don't be afraid to be candid.  The number of reviews is one of the things that drives sales, and the more sales I get, the more I like writing these things. This marks the fourth book I've published in the series in just over a year (Knights Magi came out on March 10th of last year - I would have made that date, had I not had a couple of hospital stays). And there is plenty more to come.  I'm enjoying the hell out of this, and I plan a long and interesting career for our Spellmonger and his friends . . . and enemies.

Now, I'd like to throw the comments open to spoilery discussion.  Don't read them if you haven't read the book or don't wan't to be spoiled.  You know the drill.  Things I'd love to hear are: favorite parts, favorite character, character you'd most like to see in their own focused story, and whether you think this book holds up to the standards of the series.  Basic feedback stuff.


  1. Yay! Thank you! I just got it. This read is gonna be great.

  2. I just bought the book. Hope you raise a lot of money for your boy scouts.

  3. Hey Terry, that was an amazing book! I re-read Magelord, High Mage and then started on JourneyMage last night and could not stop myself. Thanks for writing and for releasing books more frequently. I understand that not every book can beek the size of Magelord :) and I like this better since we can read something every 2/3 months instead of waiting for more than 6 months.

    I have a few questions

    1. About the time line discrepancy between Knights Magi and High Mage - the first is supposed to be during "Year 1 of Rard's rule" but the second is supposed to be during "Year 2 of Rard's rule" yet they overlap. Is this an oversight? Or am I missing something?

    2. In magelord when Min is struck by the Dragon's tail, he hears a voice in his and some spells are stuck on him to help him recover and join the fight. So far we have not had an explanation for this. Will there be one? :)

    3. Will the guruvani Gurkurl (that Min rescued and was the first to enter their temple), be back in some future book to work with Min?

    4. Will Min learn the languages of other races (non human)?

    BTW, if you are looking for any beta readers I sign myself up. But then I guess you wont want to go through that since you wont be able to churn out as many books as you want I suppose :).

    Again thanks for writing and I will be looking forward to more of your books and re-reading existing ones I suppose until then :).

    1. two things.

      Of all the people who could have found Korbal the mountain demon, The brotherhood of the rat??? I thought the tomb was supposed to have been protected by the magic of the alkan lords?

      Also, I feel like the fact that Dunselen is still as stated in Magelord, the head of the order of Tarkarine, hasn't been factored into his character.

      Lastly, I know it has nothing to do with this book, but why did minalan act like he had never heard of the forsaken before when the order of the secret tower brought them up in magelord? Hartarian had that whole discussion about them in warmage?

      Another criticism.... When I got to the part about the kasari "idol" I laughed so hard that I had enough trouble breathing that I actually thought I might faint.....I need my lungs so that I can keep breathing, so that I can keep reading your books. stop trying to kill me.

      seriously though, you asked if this book held up to the standards of your other work? It doesn't. It surpasses them by a wide margin.

      due in no small part to my love of scouting and status as an eagle scout or "raptor" (thanks for that :) ) this is probably my favorite book of all time.

      And this is coming from a guy who, for most of his life, has read books instead of having any kind of social life.

      I raise my hand in a traditional Kasari salute to you sir. You never described it in the book, but somehow, I think I know what it is.

    2. Thanks for reading so carefully . . .

      1. I'll take a look at this, you might be right. Remember, Rard was crowned the summer after Minalan takes possession of Sevendor. The boys leave for Inarion right after Yule, after the Battle of Cambrian Castle. But I'll check it out and make revisions, if necessary. One of the beauties of the Kindle format.

      2. That was Briga, lending a metaphysical hand. She has a vested interest in Minalan, now.

      3. Yes, in fact he figures in the as-of-yet-unfinished-'cause-I'm-too-busy-cranking-out-novels short story "The Ugliest Maid In Castal", which is high on my Real Soon Now pile. That will likely be one of the ones I deal with on my between-novels break.

      4. Yes, though he'll cheat.

      I appreciate the offer of beta readers. Right now one of my early readers, Tim, has that honor as my proofreader. Tim's quick turnaround and attention to detail, not to mention his insight into the series, allow me the fast turn-around. Think of him as your representative. He's one of the main reasons that the last three books have been less typo-ridden, and he's directly responsible for the creation of the Snowflake of Sevendor in this novel.

      In addition, Emily Harris is my editor, and she does a great job keeping my narrative clean and the editorial details under control. That she happens to be one of my wife's best friends and a Professor of Journalism, not to mention an aspiring writer in her own right, have made her an invaluable asset to Sevendor. My thanks to both her and Tim.

    3. @Aaron

      Yes, the Brotherhood of the Rat. Although they had significant help from the Enshadowed and the gurvani, each for their own reasons. It's a tangled, complicated tale that involves Shereul's desire to infiltrate humani civilization, the Brotherhood's desire to make powerful friends and extend their influence, and the Enshadowed's desire to . . . well, it's complicated, and involves a thousand-year old feud between Alka Alon houses.

      The details of all of this will be in a forthcoming novella featuring Rondal and Tyndal (you'll find out all about that darn idol) AND in a future YA Cadet novel that I'm working on with my youngest son. Expect a tale of rollicking adventure. And more Kasari, if you like that sort of thing.

      Dunselen's position will be resolved in Enchanter.

      Minalan doesn't always act like he remembers everything, and sometimes he feigns ignorance for political reasons. I'll have to go back and check which one it was. If it was an editorial brainfart, I'll add it to the revision list.

      This book was a blast to write, and that's precisely the reaction I wanted to inspire. Now that I have two boys of age, Scouting has reasserted itself in my life from an entirely different perspective. I thought the idea of a culture based entirely on the Scout principals, with a focus on the historical foundations of the institution at Brownsea Island and beyond, would be fascinating, and it ended up being far more fascinating than I had anticipated. My biggest surprise? How important the Kasari's literacy, of all things, was to the nature of the culture. That and trying to figure out how the Kasari would go about mating. That, too, will be featured in a future novella concerning Pentandra's participation in the Kasari rites, and her subsequent marriage to Arborn.

      But I'm thrilled to get this reaction. It's a bit of an author's indulgence, to wallow around in his favorite institutions, but the Kasari cycle of stories has turned out to be one of the most enchanting segments for me to write, so far.

      Thanks again for your support.

  4. great work Terry, I am really happy with ur work output, more fun for us readers.

    1 thought, ur level of interaction is less compared to other indie authors. They regularly react to reader questions on Facebook/Amazon forums. It really builds up the customer loyalty. If u can do this (not @ cost of ur work), it would be grand!

    1. Thanks for reading, Arthur. I understand the attraction for those kind of interactions, and the truth is I very much enjoy them. But they do take time to set up and execute, and as important as they are I would rather spend the time writing. Four complete novels and change in just over a year takes a lot of concentration and focus, and promotion distracts from that.

      That being said, as my volume of work grows I will likely take more time out for that sort of thing, including some personal appearances at cons and such. I'm still in the development phase of this work, so I want to focus on producing enough to feel confident in selling when I get out there.

  5. Honestly, I think Terry has pretty good interactions with his fans. Point is right here he has replied. I knows some indie authors get really into reacting to questions and all and that is also great. But also just maybe 1 post a month or 1 reply a week is nice interaction atleast in my view point.

    To me as long as an author gives an update/reply once in a while im very happy because it shows the author still cares about his work. Any more than that is just icing.

  6. Well I found out which God Min makes permanent...& Wow, what a great way doing it.

    Great book Terry

  7. Awesome, Awesome Awesome, just left you a five star review on & Goodreads:
    Rarely have I felt so utterly satisfied by a fantasy novel. I've been a huge fan of Terry Mancour's spellmonger series, impressed with his prodigious pace of writing & publishing, the sheer level of detail in his world building, obvious depth of his historical research on medieval society constantly increasing my vocabulary & understanding of how society was ordered in feudal times. (It really helps to use the dictionary function on my kindle).
    Reading the book description, I thought this would be more of an adventure story, taking Minalan out of his domain of Sevendor putting him on the road for months on the outskirts of the kingdom. Not so! Duchies politics, building defences against the marauding Goblins, fighting said Goblins with his child army, spreading the Scouting association throughout 2 duchies, logistically dealing with thousands of refugees, & towards the end some superb Deus ex machina tantalisingly setting us up for two or three spin-off novels as well as the next Spellmonger book.
    Well done Terry thoroughly satisfying

    Now I'm really looking forward to finding out what Lorcus was sent off to do
    Fill the gaps from Knights magi, following on with Rondal & Tyndal's adventures.
    I was surprised by some of your Welsh phrasing, until it clicked that you were using yn Gogledd (the North Wales dialect) which is totally different from normal Cymraeg, but more common amongst the first language Welsh speakers. Well done indeed

    1. Forgot to say, thank you so much for bringing us up to date with Minalans parents & sisters, been wondering about them for ages.

      Also did the magic fair go ahead? Or did Minalan miss it being out with the Kasari?

  8. Hey terry, just to inform you that i cant find journeymage on your authors page on amazon, and that i didnt get an email notification for hawkmaiden and journeymage but i do get daily kindle discount emails. Im following you on amazon already.

    When can we expect the next book now that i dont get notifications?

  9. Loved the book and I'm looking forward to the next. As Min learns more about the origins of the humans are we going to see him looking to technology as another tool against the Dead God? I would also assume that since they've been there for at least 700 years without any other humans showing up we shouldn't expect newcomers from the void.

  10. Just finished writing a short 5-star review of "Journeymage" on Amazon. Instead of including this in my review I thought you might want to know it directly; though there are hardly all that many typos and recognising that they most certainly don't distract the reader from the story you're telling it is perhaps a little unfortunate that one of these appears on the very first page:

    "You are so impressed by the spectacle - which ARE designed to impress - and the importance of the occasion that you are blind to the bored-looking people in the fancy robes standing around the head of the ceremony."

    I wager "are" should be "is", correct? Unless you want to change the order of the sentence:

    "You are so impressed by the spectacle and the importance of the occasion - which ARE designed to impress - that you are blind to the bored-looking people in the fancy robes standing around the head of the ceremony."

    Continue the good work! We are many who mightily enjoy it.

    1. Might I also suggest that you update the summaries of your books, including Journeymage, to include age and grade levels as you've done in Hawkmaiden as I'm sure that many younger readers or their parents might find such information very useful.
      My brother (who's 17), my cousin (who's 12) as well as myself of course (I'm 25), all enjoyed Hawkmaiden mightily, but especially my cousin had to be pushed a little before he began reading (none of us are native English speakers). In this regard the age and grade levels proved quite helpful.

  11. Great book Terry. Can't wait for the next one.

    Are we ever going to see an audible version of your books?

  12. I would like to add that I hope that the prince is censured by the temples, the people, and the King for attempting to murder Thousands of Children in the next book, Enchanter. Word should certainly get out about that...maybe even the gods should take a hand in putting the twerp on notice. I really look forward to the next book!

    1. Also...I just hand an idea. Sir Cei's new domain seems to be considered "poor", but could really be fixed easily with a few months of a skilled Earth mage and one of those pocket wands. All the stones could be gathered up, blocked, and stored for Min's building, or in Sir Cei's domain. Heck he can use the to repave the roads in to Min's land. I'm betting with a little effort they could make that some pretty farm land and/or quadruple the honey output with more flowers/crops to help. With magic's help there be wealth in them thar hills!

  13. I have to admit, the intro of Min to Seven was my favorite book in the series so far. This one now ties it and I can't wait for Enchanter. I literally have the shakes. Miles above and beyond in editing to tge intial Spellmonger I purchased too. The only main issue I could see was a few places it said chances instead of changes. But the most notable glitch was when Min was describing his new staff Trailblazer. The very next paragraph it was refered to as Pathfinder, and the one right after that back to Trailblazer.
    Already put my five star up, reccomending people start at the beginning with Spellmonger.
    As for someone's mention of the Rats and the tomb, if they are allied with the scrugs, who also happened to be looking for it in the last book I can see them finding it since they were free to look for it while everyone was focused on Shervul.
    The mention of the big bads ie foresaken. Really, Min is dealing with an undead head of magic hate. A race that breeds like roaches hellbent on genocide. A queen that really should have met a headsman. A princess even more vile than said queen. A poppinjay prince with delusions of grandeur thanks to his mother. A daughter being raised by an assassin now wed to a lech of a geezer that has a known prediliction of preying on young girls in his own territory. The censorate now backed by the new duke that doesn't recognize the kingdom's state. A massive brain injury. A mildly irritated goddess. And his own responsibilities in fatherhood.

    Is it any reason he completely and utterly forgot some nebulous threat that he was warned about and hasn't shown it's hand since before the fall of the old Magocracy?

  14. Oh, and believe me I know its greedy, but eta on Enchanter? Please, pretty please? Plus, very sly hit to Smokey the Bear. Took me a minute to get it but I laughed my arse off.

  15. A couple of things

    1: you You said that court wizard, enchanter and hawklady are your next project, so when are we going to get another entry from minalan's perspective? your side novels are awesome, but the spellmonger is in a league of his own

    oh and as long as we're discussing plotholes, probably the biggest source of them in the series thus far has been the exposition given to Min by the Aronin of the tree folk in Spellmonger:

    things he said that seem to have been retconned:

    Goblins were originaly Alka Alon that hid in caves, and devolved into the gurvani, instead of being the genetically engineered workforce

    Trolls were one of the three orginal races, called the deliol along with the sea folk (vundel) and alka alon (Alon), instead of genetically engineered workforce

    also, In spellmonger, Zagor says that his father found his witchstone in the creek they used for water, and the tree folk helped him use the stone

    but in magelord, it says that the alka alon basically raised him, and gave him the stone

    Lastly, in magelord, you called it the iron ring. but ever since high mage its been referred to as the iron band.

    I still consider this series to be among the best I've ever read in spite of these, but I just thought someone should mention them

    1. Interesting comments. Though I'm not at all certain about this I was under the impression that "Enchanter" has Minalan as the narrator whereas the other two books you mention, "Court Wizard" and "Hawklady" do not.

    2. my apologies. Your right, I thought enchanter was the one narrated by pentandra, but she's doing court wizard.

    3. Againt I'm not certain of this, but that' what I remember too.

  16. I'm going to start off with "It Occurs to Me" to borrow that phrase from Sire Cei, that certain characters like StoneSingers might be the Dwarves in other stories.

    The Fair Folk, Alkan Alon in humani form might be the Elves, or even funnier that Minalan could be Myrddin or better known as Merlin.

    Penny Pentandra might play into the Uther Pendragon line.

    but Merlin's chief rival was Morgan Lae Fay? wonder who that might be if we've seen that character already....

    And then there's Arthur... along with Excalibur from the Lady of the Lake. An enchanted Sword...

    The "Moloporish " Snowflake inside Min's mountain might allow him travel to "earth" which would be another realm, maybe to recruit and that's where the stories in "earth's" history came from.

    The moloporish snowflake inside Min's mountain gives him leverage. Just as The Dead God brought Dragons, what can Min bring?

    And Sire Cei the Dragon Slayer with his war hammer? Maybe the legend of Thor isn't that far off is Minalan aka Myrddin aka Merlin happened to pop into earth during the periods 10th century, 11 century, 12th century....

  17. I have a question for you Terry. In this book when Min and Taren are talking about using the pocketstones to painlessly kill chickens and Min says "Or a Goblin." Taren said that there are far easier ways to kill a goblin. From what I recall so far...There have been far few spells done that kill a lot of goblins at once. You seem to actively steer the worlds spells to smaller fields due to the "power needed". The way the transport wands work would be ideal weapons if used right.

    If you can create a field that "pockets" small groups of goblins from maybe 100 feet away that might be much easier then fighting them directly. If it can be used like the chamber pot spell...where the user doesn't need to be a mage, then you can have hundreds of folks use them at once. Even if you can only use it on one goblin at a time, they will not be able to fight it. That's hundreds dead a second with less fuss...spit them back out and start again. IT would also be a great silent assassin's tool, quick, silent, and without evidence(although the lack of evidence is evidence to stick a knife in after).

    1. More the reason Min really needs to get paranoid about security. For several books now , Rard, Mother, have all told him he's got spies every where, including on the March up the Pors river. With what's happened in Journeymage , Rard and the Duke of Mewin along with the Censorate have to make a move before they can't.

    2. From what I've seen Min has no need to worry about Rard. They seem to get along pretty well. Though I'd defiantly worry about Mother, the prince and the princess along with Censorate.
      Though, I'd think Mother and princess would use Min's daughter they have in their control before they tried to do anything to Min himself. She is essentially their trump card for now. Honestly I just want to see Min bust in and take his daughter from them and deal with the fallout from his wife.

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  19. Terry,

    Considering the natural magic resistance that dragons have, how difficult would it be to enchant dragon scales/armour.

    I am just mulling over in my head enchanting Sire Ceis and Mins armour with strength,speed, stamina and other goodies that might be available.

    Sevendor having enchanted knights would be be pretty amazing.

  20. Terry really looking forward to the next book want to here more about Sevendor now that Min is stuck there.
    Want to see how the villages get bigger where the elves live in his provence and the new Sashtalia area that he owns what that will look like.
    Would like to see some more stonesingers hired to start construction on the hawkmaidens father's land..
    Would also like to see him getting all his people to read and write and getting them to all to learn to fight, even the women would be amazing if he starting raising squads of warrior women from the villagers.
    Also his son like to see how his magic develops.
    Can you include more maps of all his land in next books please its to imagine it if there more maps.

    1. Also with thousands of refugees from the war why doesn't Min go out and recruit all the good tradesman he can get for sevendor stuff like that would help build sevendor quicker

  21. Still can't get enough of this series. Any update on the next book, main or short story? Keep up the good work.

  22. Loved the latest Book! I just picked up Spellmonger about 2 weeks ago and it has been practically all i can do to go to take breaks for Work and Sleep until I caught up!

    The only thing that I found distracting in this last volume was that it seems that the names being used weren't being checked. There were at least 2 instances in the beginning of this book where the war god (Duin) had been referenced as Huin.

    Will eagerly wait for the next addition!

    Thanks again for a great read!

  23. 3 brother gods; Huin, Duin, and Luin. (Quack) If I remember correctly, (and I'm not checking the books for reference) Huin is god of Harvest, Duin is god of Destruction, and Luin is god of Law. (I see what you did there, Mr. Mancour.)

  24. So, just wondering if there is a favored way of commenting on editing things so they can eventually be smoothed out....

    I wrote a review on Amazon, 5 star, but did mention some of them. The whole Talry/Tudry business makes me mildly insane, even when they aren't confused in the writing, If there is someplace we could leave comments to be picked up in your leisure, that would be awesome...

  25. Hello!
    Can someone do me a HUGE favor? Make all of the maps for the series available in the same, easy to find place. I'm using the kindle app on my windows phone, and the map for journeymage did not come through. You do a fantastic job with geographical cues throughout the story, I just wish I had a map to consult to make sense of them. Also having all the maps in the same place, it would be interesting to be able to compare locations between books. Thanks a lot!

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