The Black Magician Trilogy


Trudi Canavan


High fantasy



Followed by

The Magician's Apprentice

Read twice and own. Published in three books:

  • 2001: The Magician's Guild
  • 2002: The Novice
  • 2003: The High Lord

I think I bought them myself, probably from Waterstones, on a whim. Can't remember any different. I have the 2004 editions.

First read (2004 presumably)Edit


I remember absolutely loving them, loving the mechanics of the magic, loving the secrets around black magic, loving the ending.


3 I imagine.

Second read (November 2011)Edit

11 12 14 The Black Magician Trilogy

Finished! Dec 14th '11.


  • The Magician's Guild: 2004 paperback Orbit edition. 463 pages, 32 lines per page, 23 blank pages. 736560 characters[1] making 383 'standard' pages.
  • The Novice: 2004 paperback Orbit edition. 575 pages, 32 lines per page, 29 blank pages. 792792 characters[2] making 412 'standard' pages.
  • The High Lord: 2004 paperback Orbit edition. 640 pages, 32 lines per page, 26 blank pages. 990382 characters[3] making 514 'standard' pages.

Total: 1678 actual pages, 1309 standard pages.


11 12 14 The Black Magician Trilogy

Read it all in quick succession.

Started reading for the second time on November the 29th, after finishing Containment and needing something else to read on the way to uni. Decided I'd try to finish reading it before the end of December, thinking I could manage the required 54 pages a day.

The Magician's Guild

Bit worried when the writing was clearly of an unsophisticated style, but quickly warmed up to the content. Finished it in on December the 2nd, far quicker than planned! Gave it a 2-4.

The Novice

Started The Novice on the 5th of December, after returning from a weekend in Lincoln (painting the set of The Drift!), and powered through it over four days, finishing at work on the 8th. I remember feeling a bit bored as I read through it - I think there was a lot of time given to not much activity, although I'm still glad I read it, it had several important threads in the grand scheme of the trilogy, and by the end was quite keen to read on. Actually, having just flicked through I was surprised to realise Sonea's entire time as a Novice is covered in it (obviously!). I'd forgotten that it covered that much, although it still seems to me that not much exciting actually happened. I want to give it a 2-5, but I'm willing to concede that I might just be rewarding it for its ending :P.

The High Lord

Started on the 8th of December at work, after finishing The Novice. Finished on the morning of the 14th, on the bus. I liked this one, it obviously has the lovely relationship development between Sonea and Akkarin, and the reactions of everyone to the invading Ichani was compelling. A bit unsophisticated, however, in its view of people and the world. Came across as the sort of thing you'd get in a children's cartoon. Gave it a 2-5!

Overall impressions: Really draws me in still, I love the setting and everything, it appeals to me a lot. But I think because of that I'm judging it as better than it objectively is, by which I mean I can imagine a reasonable person thinking it was really badly written and quite cliché at times. But I liked it :P



Reading recordEdit

Previous book: Christian Cantrell, Containment

Next book: Trudi Canavan, Priestess of the White (The Age of the Five Trilogy #1)

Ratings, awards, mentions and recommendationsEdit

Links and referencesEdit

  1. 1674 characters on page 258, according to Notepad++
  2. 1452 characters on page 301, according to Notepad++
  3. 1613 characters on page 332, according to Notepad++

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