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Trial By Fire

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After a brief visit to the Blighted Lands, in hopes of recovering something useful from Shadye’s Dark Fortress, Emily returns to Whitehall for her fourth year, bracing herself for the exams that will determine her future. But as she resumes her education, she discovers that the shadows of the past are hanging over the school. A teacher wants to break her, some of her frien After a brief visit to the Blighted Lands, in hopes of recovering something useful from Shadye’s Dark Fortress, Emily returns to Whitehall for her fourth year, bracing herself for the exams that will determine her future. But as she resumes her education, she discovers that the shadows of the past are hanging over the school. A teacher wants to break her, some of her friends are acting oddly and, worst of all, a boy intends to court her. But as she struggles to come to terms with her own past, she discovers a plot to kill her and a deadly threat that may destroy the entire school...and a fight she cannot win, but dares not lose.


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After a brief visit to the Blighted Lands, in hopes of recovering something useful from Shadye’s Dark Fortress, Emily returns to Whitehall for her fourth year, bracing herself for the exams that will determine her future. But as she resumes her education, she discovers that the shadows of the past are hanging over the school. A teacher wants to break her, some of her frien After a brief visit to the Blighted Lands, in hopes of recovering something useful from Shadye’s Dark Fortress, Emily returns to Whitehall for her fourth year, bracing herself for the exams that will determine her future. But as she resumes her education, she discovers that the shadows of the past are hanging over the school. A teacher wants to break her, some of her friends are acting oddly and, worst of all, a boy intends to court her. But as she struggles to come to terms with her own past, she discovers a plot to kill her and a deadly threat that may destroy the entire school...and a fight she cannot win, but dares not lose.

30 review for Trial By Fire

  1. 4 out of 5

    Wendy O

    As i've read my way through this series I have been more and more frustrated, not just with the protagonist, but with everyone surrounding her. She is constantly put into shitty positions by those surrounding her and then blamed for her choices. This installment just seems to top everything that has happened previously. (view spoiler)[ Emily spends the book constantly being told by her friends and her teachers that Master Grey is there to help her boost her confidence, regardless of their dislike As i've read my way through this series I have been more and more frustrated, not just with the protagonist, but with everyone surrounding her. She is constantly put into shitty positions by those surrounding her and then blamed for her choices. This installment just seems to top everything that has happened previously. (view spoiler)[ Emily spends the book constantly being told by her friends and her teachers that Master Grey is there to help her boost her confidence, regardless of their dislike of each other. She is told again and again to trust him and then when she finally blows her top over everything she is immediately blamed by Lady Barb. Even though Lady Barb herself was the one that said it was -okay- for her to break while at school, because at least here she would have people to help her piece shit back together. Emily constantly makes some crappy choices, but she is surrounded by hypocrites all the time. I'll be glad to finish this series. (hide spoiler)]

  2. 4 out of 5

    Per Gunnar

    Mr. Nuttall has done it again. He has written another great book in the Schooled In Magic series. Unsurprisingly the book picks up more or less from where the last one left off. Emily is back in school which is my favourite setting for this series. She is however also making a trip to Shadey’s old fortress to recover what is now considered her belongings. A trip which will have dire consequences for Emily as well as Whitehall. To complicate matters an old “acquaintance”, Master Grey, is charged Mr. Nuttall has done it again. He has written another great book in the Schooled In Magic series. Unsurprisingly the book picks up more or less from where the last one left off. Emily is back in school which is my favourite setting for this series. She is however also making a trip to Shadey’s old fortress to recover what is now considered her belongings. A trip which will have dire consequences for Emily as well as Whitehall. To complicate matters an old “acquaintance”, Master Grey, is charged by the Grandmaster to teach Emily the art of combat. Apart from Emily being quite unhappy about this, Master Grey has an agenda of his own. As usual this is a well written book which is an enjoyment to read. Emily’s schooling is intermixed with her emotional development, not unsurprisingly the latter being of the rather romantic kind, as well as the progression of a mystery of strange behaviours among a large number of the students and, finally, Master Gray’s secret conspiracy. The book ends in not one but two climaxes one of them, unfortunately, having somewhat of a tragic outcome. Also not unsurprisingly, by the end of the book Emily has added to her reputation of being someone who’s path should not be crossed in the wrong way. I finished this book much too quickly. I definitely hope the author can keep the series going. The title of the next book is a wee bit scary since it seems to hint that it is not my kind of story but that will certainly not deter me from picking it up as soon as it comes out. After all, Mr. Nuttall have never truly disappointed me with any of his books.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn I. de Kock

    Great characters. I enjoyed 1-6 on Audible. It wasn't until the end of 6 that I realized no more were available... Travis Gilbert's exceptional narrations​ allow another level of enjoyment to an excellent series. Great characters. I enjoyed 1-6 on Audible. It wasn't until the end of 6 that I realized no more were available... Travis Gilbert's exceptional narrations​ allow another level of enjoyment to an excellent series.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Boris Silva

    I've been enjoying the first books but there are some things that are starting to annoy me as the story goes on. First, there's been character progression for basically every character except for the protagonist. Alassa stopped being an entitled brat, Imaiqah and Frieda got more confident, for example. But as the story goes on Emily becomes more and more immature, and more of a egocentrical emo brat. For example when she's with friends she acts like "Oh this is so annoying! being with friends! I I've been enjoying the first books but there are some things that are starting to annoy me as the story goes on. First, there's been character progression for basically every character except for the protagonist. Alassa stopped being an entitled brat, Imaiqah and Frieda got more confident, for example. But as the story goes on Emily becomes more and more immature, and more of a egocentrical emo brat. For example when she's with friends she acts like "Oh this is so annoying! being with friends! I would rather be sleeping or reading a book!", but then when she's alone she's like "Ohh! Everyone hates me! Why does everyone hates me?? The world is so unfair!". Then she has never been interested in Combat Magic, the only reason she's there is because she was put there by the grandmaster, nothing else, and so far all she has been interested in is reading books, learning new spells, and experimenting, but now suddenly it turns out that she wants to become a Mediator and fight random evil sorcerers and necromances? Because she has to be a hero? She's the only one who has the knowledge of how to kill the necromancers (because nobody else can be trusted with the knowledge but her, of course) but she doesn't care about probably killing herself trying to kill a random evil sorcerer without ever telling anyone how to kill the necromancers? Then there's the thing with being the baroness of Cockatrice, she wants to keep being the baroness to help the people but then she has never acted like she cares or is actually interested in working as the baroness. She only keeps her egocentrical emo brat act of "Ohhhh Why did the king make me the baroness??? I have to wooork! I'm so busyyy! this is so unfaaiir! I want to read boooks!!" But when asked to just give up the barony then she acts like "nonononono, I can't do that, if I let somebody else be the baron they will only ruin everything, I'm the best for the job!" (Even though so far she hasn't done much anyway). Second, the author keeps explaining things over and over again, or keeps mentioning the same things over and over again as Emily's thoughts. Sometimes this happens in the middle of actual conversations and then suddenly the conversation is interrupted with 1-3 pages of random rambling inside of Emily's head, and then the conversation resumes and I have to go back because I don't even remember what they were talking about anymore. It got to a point where I already know what the author is going to explain so I just skip whole paragraphs when I notice he's starting to explain something that he already explained. Third, and this is the most annoying one for me. This is something that some authors like doing and I still have no idea why. It is when they force characters to act like idiots or do random stupid things for the sake of plot, it's like they want the plot to be some way and the only way they find to get to that point is to make the characters do stupid things. And I understand that this is a Young Adult book, but that doesn't mean that everyone has to act like an brainless idiot, including the adults. Specially when they do that just to make Emily look more clever than everyone else. In Schooled in Magic, they let all the brats to bully themselves even if some are weaker than others. And even if they can easily kill each other by mistake just as Emily almost kills Alassa. It's like giving each student a gun and telling them "here, take it, you are allowed to shot anyone you want, just make sure not to kill them. Oh and make sure not to move the gun too much, sometimes it shoots by itself, so maybe don't point it at people heads?" But hey, we needed it for the plot. In Lessons in Etiquette apparently the king forgot to hire security for his castle, given how easy it was for the nobles to take over the castle. And then at the end, Emily and Alassa decide to enter the Hall by themselves, leaving the Princes outside, because why not? what could go wrong? Then somehow the evil aunt gets past them, enters the hall and puts a knife in Alassa's throat without anyone noticing. But hey, we needed it for the plot. In Study in Slaughter apparently everyone forgot that there was a mimic on the loose. And of course in the end Emily was the one who found it and found out how to kill it, because everyone else are a bunch of medieval idiots and she's so clever. But hey, we needed it for the plot. In Work Experience, Emily has been trained to run through forests as part of her Combat Magic training, but then suddenly she hits her head with a tree branch, falls on her back and a deathly snake just appears on top of her, apparently it flied there, or just teleported. But hey, she needed an OP familiar. Then while looking for the old necromancer hag, Lady Barb falls into a mundane pit trap and is kidnaped by her. She's a Combat Sorceress trained to avoid all kind of traps, hexes, curses, spells, subtle magic and what not, but apparently they never taught her that pit traps existed. But hey, we needed for Emily to go and rescue her, plot you know? In The School of Hard Knocks, apparently it never occurred to The Administrator, a very calculating and very knowledable man (in any kind of magic), that to use the MageMaster key and take over the school he needed to actually magically own it. (Even though sorcerers leave curses in each and every one of their objects, for people who wants to use them without their permission) But hey, we needed the suspense, we needed to think that everything was lost, and of course, the plot. In Love's Labor's Won, Both families have a terrible feud between them, they are always at each other throats and still nobody knows what they are fighting for (because hey, we need the mystery, we can't reveal everything right now, we have to wait a few books to know something so apparently irrelevant). Everyone knew that it was a stupid idea to invite both families to the Faire but Emily, everyone knew that Emily invited both families and still nobody decided to tell her until the last moment when it was too late (because hey, we needed both families to be there fighting every time, that's the whole point of the book). Mark and Mellissa were always disappearing, and nobody found suspicious that they were disappearing always at the same time. And nobody decided to go and find them, despite both of their families being very controlling. And then, they go and hide inside Emily's library, with easily breakable and obvious wards, but nobody found them, only Emily (of course). In the end, apparently all they had to do to find them was to ask a maid, because apparently all maids knew where they where. And then when all hell breaks loose, turns out that Emily found out how to make the battery work, just in that moment. But the top of needless stupidity comes in Trial By Fire, (view spoiler)[First, there's Emily's insistence for looking for what is in Shadye’s Dark Fortress, because "ThErE cOuLd Be BoOkS aNd i CoLlEcT bOoKs, I'm sO InTeLlEcTuAl", Then when they take all of the artefacts and books to Whitehall, nobody thinks that Shadye could have demonic artefacts or could have summoned demons, even though he tried to sacrifice Emily to the demons. The grandmaster is blind to demons and he knows it, and it never occurred to him that it would be a good idea to ask someone to look at the objects to see if they had anything demonic in them. And then the only one that can see that something weird is going on is Emily, of course, our clever protagonist. Then everyone keeps telling Emily that Master Grey is just a strict teacher and all he wants is to teach her well, that it doesn't matter if she snaps at him or breaks down because it's better if she does so while she's at school where there won't be any repercussions. But then when she finally snaps at him and breaks down it turns out that it's the worst thing she could have done, and everyone makes sure to tell her so. Apparently if a sorcerer gets offended by anything that other sorcerer did or said, they are in their rights to take it as mortal offense and an offer for a duel to the death. It doesn't matter if one of them is evidently weaker. You look at someone the wrong way? Duel to the death. You tell someone that they are dummy? Duel to the death. Then you have no other choice but die or kill, be imprisoned and give everything you have to the stuck up sorcerer, or run for your life and still give everything you have to the stuck up sorcerer. It's a wonder that nobody noticed that duels could be used to legally kill enemies or that the sorcerers haven't managed to kill themselves already. Then, Master Grey, the 1st ranked duelist, someone who managed to kill other apparently top ranked duelist in one shot, for some reason can't do the same thing with Emily, a weak student. Then again, when all hope is lost, she just touches him with the most OP spell in existence and kills him instantly. And even then the author never explains what the spell did, even though he likes explaining things so much. (We need the mystery remember?) But hey, we needed that epic last boss battle, and we can't kill Emily, she's the protagonist after all. (hide spoiler)] I get it that people can make mistakes, but when they make random blatant mistakes just for the sake of plot it fells forced and stupid. And it's worse when the people making the mistakes are the most knowledgable and powerful people in the book.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Margaret

    Lady Emily must die. So say her enemies, whose number grows year by year. And change continues to come to the Allied Lands. The genie [concepts/ideas that Emily has brought from Earth] has truly left the bottle, for better or worse. Year Four sees Lady Emily working on her first joint project. The purpose of the project is the close teamwork necessary for the two students to successfully complete their project. Emily has had trouble all her life making new friends and has never had her grade d Lady Emily must die. So say her enemies, whose number grows year by year. And change continues to come to the Allied Lands. The genie [concepts/ideas that Emily has brought from Earth] has truly left the bottle, for better or worse. Year Four sees Lady Emily working on her first joint project. The purpose of the project is the close teamwork necessary for the two students to successfully complete their project. Emily has had trouble all her life making new friends and has never had her grade depend on such a joint endeavor before. And her teammate is both a stranger [at first] and a boy. Then accidents begin to plague most of the First and Second Year students. Minor injuries but did they ALL really walk into a wall? Just to top it off, Emily and Aloha have both completed the only two years of Martial Magic offered at Whitehall. So, a private tutor is retained just to put the two of them through their paces so they do not lose what they learned earlier. Except it is Master Grey, who hated Emily on sight the first time she met him. This series continues to be a great comfort to me. During trying times, I can always count on the Schooled in Magic series to provide excellent entertainment to take me away from the troubles of the day!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Naj

    This one has clear inter-mingling of sub-plots that I can actually appreciate. But there are still things that I wince at: - the overly used word: sardonic. - the overly used 'MC is ignorant of the outcomes of her actions' excuse that began in Book 1. It's getting really annoying - I'd prefer to read about other conflict-triggers. And what is the (view spoiler)[ forbidden spell that she used in the end?? Did I miss the explanation of how it works? Nutall does his utmost best to explain all spells t This one has clear inter-mingling of sub-plots that I can actually appreciate. But there are still things that I wince at: - the overly used word: sardonic. - the overly used 'MC is ignorant of the outcomes of her actions' excuse that began in Book 1. It's getting really annoying - I'd prefer to read about other conflict-triggers. And what is the (view spoiler)[ forbidden spell that she used in the end?? Did I miss the explanation of how it works? Nutall does his utmost best to explain all spells to its nitty gritty detail and yet skims over the forbidden spell she uses in the end? (hide spoiler)] . I find it to be a plot hole and (view spoiler)[ Master Grey's death comes off as hard to believe (hide spoiler)] . I just can't buy the ending with any sincerity. Regardless, I can't deny that the pacing and overall story telling is a vast improvement from the first few books - I shouldn't have to wait 2-3 books to get that a story is good but people who have already moved on to the 14th are very adamant that this series is good. My verdict - it's just 'okay'. Okay enough that I'll pick up the next one because it is an easy read if you want to listen to something while you do some mindless chore.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Ruby Ridge

    I really love Christopher Nuttall's books, both this series and the 'Zero Enigma' series, but I had to cut a couple of stars from the rating because 1) Nothing really happens for the first ¾ of this book, everything worth reading is at the end and 2) This Caleb relationship seems unreal, Caleb is almost an NPC and (view spoiler)[. well, not really a spoiler but Freida has a crush on Emily and it would have fitted the story and character so much more if they had got together - at least Freida has I really love Christopher Nuttall's books, both this series and the 'Zero Enigma' series, but I had to cut a couple of stars from the rating because 1) Nothing really happens for the first ¾ of this book, everything worth reading is at the end and 2) This Caleb relationship seems unreal, Caleb is almost an NPC and (view spoiler)[. well, not really a spoiler but Freida has a crush on Emily and it would have fitted the story and character so much more if they had got together - at least Freida has some character, unlike Caleb. (hide spoiler)] Still, apart from my negativity, the series is still looking real good - onward.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Ronny

    Another fast and entertaining read, I liked the ending, even if some of the science based concept used would (I'm fairly sure) have been known there already, and shouldn't have come as a surprise ((view spoiler)[especially fires need for oxygen, and the effect of giving something momentum vs dragging it into someone, which, to be honest, should be indistinguishable from the point of view of the staff, it's forward speed would be the same. Also, Emilys reaction to some people, "knowing" they hate Another fast and entertaining read, I liked the ending, even if some of the science based concept used would (I'm fairly sure) have been known there already, and shouldn't have come as a surprise ((view spoiler)[especially fires need for oxygen, and the effect of giving something momentum vs dragging it into someone, which, to be honest, should be indistinguishable from the point of view of the staff, it's forward speed would be the same. Also, Emilys reaction to some people, "knowing" they hate her, makes her seem a bit overwrought, especially with Zed in the previous book (hide spoiler)] )

  9. 5 out of 5

    mrbilll

    I love Fantasy/SciFi books. This is book 7 of a series of 12. Christopher Nuttall has made the whole series exciting. Each book is fast paced, the characters intermingle well. The main character is able to meet each difficult challenge with success. Friends and enemies come and go smoothly through the series. I am half way through book 12 and am anxious to get to the finally. Will Emily's(main character) magic be strong enough to save her and her friends or will the necromancer overpower her and I love Fantasy/SciFi books. This is book 7 of a series of 12. Christopher Nuttall has made the whole series exciting. Each book is fast paced, the characters intermingle well. The main character is able to meet each difficult challenge with success. Friends and enemies come and go smoothly through the series. I am half way through book 12 and am anxious to get to the finally. Will Emily's(main character) magic be strong enough to save her and her friends or will the necromancer overpower her and take her life?

  10. 5 out of 5

    Shereen Lang

    The Schooled in Magic series is one of my secret/guilty delights - it's so far removed from my normal tastes in fiction but I just adore the characters in this series. Trial by Fire is probably the best in the series so far, I'm sure the next 7 will be great The Schooled in Magic series is one of my secret/guilty delights - it's so far removed from my normal tastes in fiction but I just adore the characters in this series. Trial by Fire is probably the best in the series so far, I'm sure the next 7 will be great

  11. 4 out of 5

    Hollyberye

    Very addictive series...I found this installment compelling, just as compelling as the prior stories of Emily. The author is quite adept at plotting, his characters are robust, and the magic world is highly detailed, more so than any other fantasy series I have encountered. Very, very readable.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Barbara Delaney

    Woah I loved the twist this book took. I love to make predictions of what will happen, and I didn’t catch one until it was nearly too late to predict (rare for me, I usually have an accurate prediction by the 3rd chapter). I can’t wait to read the next book!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan J Albers

    Another Winner Really like the series. Can't wait for the next one. Have read several of Chris's books and haven't been disappointed yet. Another Winner Really like the series. Can't wait for the next one. Have read several of Chris's books and haven't been disappointed yet.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Stoneturk

    What a good book Spoiler alert! The Grand Master dies how sad I really liked that character, Master Grey dies we that bugger needed to die really good book.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Rosina Rushen

    Great book I just could not wait to finish the book to find out what happened with Emily. It's sad at the end but I can't wait for the next book Great book I just could not wait to finish the book to find out what happened with Emily. It's sad at the end but I can't wait for the next book

  16. 5 out of 5

    Marie

    Best one yet! :)

  17. 5 out of 5

    Christian Jeffress

    Great Another great addition to the series, but also one of the sadder additions as well. All-around a great read though, excited to get to book 8.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Helen

    Serious issues and peril mar yet another school term in thought-provoking ways.

  19. 5 out of 5

    David Murray

    Emily visits the place where it all started. Another fantastic book in the series

  20. 5 out of 5

    Nahid

    Excellent book Great reading this, you could see how Emily is evolving and growing up to be a sorcerer to be reckoned with

  21. 5 out of 5

    Eustacia Tan

    As you may know, I was having a school camp (then I had to go vote) last week. And tomorrow, I'll be on my way back to Singapore and Malaysia for a research trip. It's a good thing I have books to read in during camp and in-between flights. One of the books that I've read recently would be Trial By Fire. Now, I should make it clear that I'm coming into this series as a first timer. There's probably a ton of background stuff that I don't know . That being said, I managed to follow along with the s As you may know, I was having a school camp (then I had to go vote) last week. And tomorrow, I'll be on my way back to Singapore and Malaysia for a research trip. It's a good thing I have books to read in during camp and in-between flights. One of the books that I've read recently would be Trial By Fire. Now, I should make it clear that I'm coming into this series as a first timer. There's probably a ton of background stuff that I don't know . That being said, I managed to follow along with the story pretty well, and I didn't feel like I was being thrown into a very unfamiliar world. Trial by Fire follows Emily as she returns to Whitehall for her fourth year of magic studies. This is the year where she has to seriously consider her career paths, and things that happened in the previous books are making it difficult for her to make a simple decision. Add a teacher who hates her to that, and students acting weirder than normal, and it's so obvious that Emily's fourth year isn't going to go smoothly. One thing I thought was interesting was Emily's contributions to Whitehall and the world it's in. It's not really dwelt upon, probably because all this is from the later books, but it seems like Emily has been trying to import ideas and machines from earth to this one. I found the way writing, printing presses, and so on affected the world interesting. Character-wise, I liked Emily and friends. I thought that Emily, Caleb, Frieda and Alassa were the most developed compared to the other characters, but I think it's because they have more show time. I quite liked their interactions, and how their respective stations (and origins) in life affected how they behave. As for the big obstacle in the book that's happens, well, no spoilers but I was quite surprised. The first half of the book is very much school-related, and then bam, there are two problems that Emily has to face at one go. I did like the fact that Emily doesn't solve everything on her own, one problem basically requires someone else to step in, but the solution for another problem did feel a little pat. [SPOILER ALERT - Skip to next paragraph if you don't want to see it] Emily basically has to enter a duel to the death, and the way she wins is by a forbidden spell. It was a bit of a let-down, since all the pages before was emphasised how she didn't have the skill and experience, but then suddenly, she had this magic "win everything" card. All in all, this was an enjoyable book. Even though I didn't start from the first book, I connected quickly with the characters and was engaged in their stories. Disclaimer: I got a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for a free and honest review. P.s. I just saw the author bio, and saw that he got married in Malaysia. How cool is that? I wonder if he's been to Singapore... This review was first posted at Inside the mind of a Bibliophile

  22. 4 out of 5

    Mary

    a far stronger, deeply satisfying book At last Emily is being allowed to grow up. It's nothing like easy, and there's a lot of pain here, but I also feel a strong sense of satisfaction that Emily is coming into her own power and responsibility. She is no longer the only one paying for all--many people suffer in this book and almost everyone has something to learn or grow beyond, but it feels more real and fair that way. By the end of the story, some of Emily's strongest supports are lost, but she a far stronger, deeply satisfying book At last Emily is being allowed to grow up. It's nothing like easy, and there's a lot of pain here, but I also feel a strong sense of satisfaction that Emily is coming into her own power and responsibility. She is no longer the only one paying for all--many people suffer in this book and almost everyone has something to learn or grow beyond, but it feels more real and fair that way. By the end of the story, some of Emily's strongest supports are lost, but she has finally realized that all the running and hiding she was doing had bought her nothing but insecurity and more fear. Lady Barb is no longer blaming and scolding Emily for what she doesn't know, but is admitting that their relationship actually is something close to mother-daughter. Lady Barb is also now acting the parent by insisting that Emily acknowledge and address her own weaknesses, and respecting her for doing so. I was also glad to discover that there's much more of a plot to this book that can't be reduced to 'oh there's a big problem and Emily needs to fix it because it's all her fault.' Master Grey does try to blame Emily for everything, but even Emily can tell he's wrong, and for the first time, she doesn't let guilt and self-doubt dictate her reactions. She plans, makes hard choices and takes responsibility. It's very satisfying.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Rick Stuckwisch

    A welcome return to form following the somewhat disappointing previous book, and really a fine continuation of an excellent series. Less contrived and choppy than Book 6, and far more compelling, consistent, and convincing. I especially enjoyed the exploration and development of the main character in this case, and the way the story delved into her relationships and her place in the world. Not as subtle and crafted as J.K. Rowling's work (what is?), but nevertheless engaging, sympathetic, and be A welcome return to form following the somewhat disappointing previous book, and really a fine continuation of an excellent series. Less contrived and choppy than Book 6, and far more compelling, consistent, and convincing. I especially enjoyed the exploration and development of the main character in this case, and the way the story delved into her relationships and her place in the world. Not as subtle and crafted as J.K. Rowling's work (what is?), but nevertheless engaging, sympathetic, and believable. Granted, the climax and final resolution did feel a bit abrupt, as compared to the rest of the book, but the conclusion was both satisfying in itself and tantalizing toward the next installment (evidently entitled, "Wedding Hells," and mercifully expected yet in 2015). The proof is in the pudding, and Christopher Nuttall has me hooked on this series. Not "children's" literature, I should mention, but adults both young and older should, I think, be able to appreciate the books.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Stuart Macmartin

    Back to the rich background and compelling storytelling. Still a faint YA feel to this book, less so than last. There's a teenage moment that I can assure you is quite realistic. The growing tension through the book was grounded by ever stronger understanding of the motivations from everyone which made this book feel richer than previous ones. Emily was more annoyingly immature than I expected through the first third of the book, but she does grow to recognize it and realize that her training is Back to the rich background and compelling storytelling. Still a faint YA feel to this book, less so than last. There's a teenage moment that I can assure you is quite realistic. The growing tension through the book was grounded by ever stronger understanding of the motivations from everyone which made this book feel richer than previous ones. Emily was more annoyingly immature than I expected through the first third of the book, but she does grow to recognize it and realize that her training is more complex than she'd first thought. Minor annoyances of editing: "cruel smile" is too cartoonish, "gimlet" again, overuse of "hell" which as I've argued for previous books seems completely out of place, and one or two typos.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kristy Halseth

    I won't really say too much about the book other than I really liked it. I think it could have gone a little farther and added a little more depth. But on the whole, quite good. Normally by about this point, a series starts to weaken. This author seems to get better with every book. That is really the point I want to make. At the point most longer series start to fall apart as it feels like the author is searching for where he or she wants to go next this author is hitting his stride and if feel I won't really say too much about the book other than I really liked it. I think it could have gone a little farther and added a little more depth. But on the whole, quite good. Normally by about this point, a series starts to weaken. This author seems to get better with every book. That is really the point I want to make. At the point most longer series start to fall apart as it feels like the author is searching for where he or she wants to go next this author is hitting his stride and if feels like he has a plan and it going there. I'm really enjoying this series. People who like 'high fantasy' novels should like these books. They are not a perfect fit into that vein of fantasy but these books are close to it.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Eric

    The Schooled in Magic series is one of my secret/guilty delights - it's so far removed from my normal tastes in fiction but I just adore the characters in this series. Trial by Fire is probably the best in the series so far, it certainly contains the most significant changes to the story universe and characters to date. The only complaint I have is that I now must wait another several months for book 8 to be released. The Schooled in Magic series is one of my secret/guilty delights - it's so far removed from my normal tastes in fiction but I just adore the characters in this series. Trial by Fire is probably the best in the series so far, it certainly contains the most significant changes to the story universe and characters to date. The only complaint I have is that I now must wait another several months for book 8 to be released.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Charles van Buren

    Featuring a more mature and able Emily, August 3, 2016 Verified Purchase(What's this?) This review is from: Trial By Fire (Schooled in Magic Book 7) (Kindle Edition) Someone other than Emily makes a grave mistake which endangers Whitehaven. At least having someone else make the mistake is a change. An enemy reaches out to destroy Emily but she proves to be more powerful and able than anyone suspected. The series seems to be back on track with Emily gaining some maturity. Featuring a more mature and able Emily, August 3, 2016 Verified Purchase(What's this?) This review is from: Trial By Fire (Schooled in Magic Book 7) (Kindle Edition) Someone other than Emily makes a grave mistake which endangers Whitehaven. At least having someone else make the mistake is a change. An enemy reaches out to destroy Emily but she proves to be more powerful and able than anyone suspected. The series seems to be back on track with Emily gaining some maturity.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jon Abbott

    One of a series - start with the first book. Young woman learning to use her talent for magic, her inventiveness and her courage. In almost every book she fights some magical creature as well as the usual trials of attending a boarding school for the magically gifted young people, including a princess or two.

  29. 4 out of 5

    John Beslanwitch

    Emily grows up For anyone who has fallen in love with this series, this is one the more powerful volumes yet. A must read that leaves so many things answered and so many many more not. So we wait with bated breath for next book to be written and released.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Carole

    Starting to feel more like a formula per year than a slow reveal Get on with it, it's too much of the same thing in each book. Maybe a love interest, a betrayal and a sacrifice. Then an inspiration followed by self doubt and recriminations Starting to feel more like a formula per year than a slow reveal Get on with it, it's too much of the same thing in each book. Maybe a love interest, a betrayal and a sacrifice. Then an inspiration followed by self doubt and recriminations

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