Callum Hunt's life has been difficult ever since he was admitted to the Magisterium, since his father suspects him of being evil, and his closest companion is a Chaos-ridden wolf--but when he discovers that his father may be trying to destroy both him and Havoc, he escapes back to the magical world and he and his friends Aaron and Tamara, become involved in the search for the stolen Alkahest, a copper gauntlet with dangerous powers.
- ISBN10 0545522285
- ISBN13 9780545522281
- Publish Date 1 September 2015
- Publish Status Active
- Publisher Scholastic
- Imprint Scholastic Press
- Format Hardcover
- Pages 272
- Language English
The Magisterium series had drawn similarities to the Harry Potter series, a boarding school for magicians slash mages who are fighting against the evil of the world, but with enough differences to stand on it's own merits. Both The Iron Trial and The Copper Gauntlet are fantastic middle grade reads that explore a boarding school for teens known as the Magisterium, where children with magical abilities are chosen to hone their skills as mages, training for a war against their own kind. Despite his father's wishes, Callum not only is chosen to enter the Magisterium but will train under the accomplished Master Rufan who also trained his late mother, a woman tragically killed when Callum was still an infant and left the boy irrevocably damaged.
Callum's injury has always ensured his loneliness, mocked throughout school for his distinct limp. But now at the boarding school for mages, Callum finds himself not only with friends but a purpose greater than he's even known. I really liked Callum's character. Even with his permanent impairment, he never saw himself as anything other than able and wanted to be treated as such. Along with his team slash roommates Aaron and Tamara, they begin training under the prestigious master Rufas, a man known for only training the best of the best and despite Callum's best intentions to be expelled from the Magisterium, he starts to realise his father may have been wrong in his dire warnings.
The tentative friendship between Callum, Aaron and Tamara was a strange combination, I think that's where the Harry Potter similarities also lie along with the boarding school location and rivalry between the mages in training. But for me, that's where the similarities end. I loved the character dynamics and rivalry, it added a much needed layer to what was a fairly light storyline. Appropriate for the intended audience and those who enjoy an entertaining middle grade read.
Compared to Cassandra Clare's The Mortal Instruments series, I enjoyed the writing so much more with thanks to Holly Black I suspect and looking forward to reading her previous releases as a result. I enjoyed The Copper Gauntlet slightly more than The Iron Trial and looking forward to the next release in the series. Rather than recommend it to fans of Harry Potter, I feel the Percy Jackson audience may appreciate this series more so. It's entertaining and a quick read for those who enjoy middle grade fantasy and adventure such as myself.