Jinx’s Magic by Sage Blackwood

Jinx, apprentice to Simon Magus, is forced to explore and tame his own magic in an attempt to rescue his mentor, rescue Simon’s wife, Sophie, defeat the evil Bonemaster, stop the destruction of the trees in the Urwald, and learn KnIP (Knowledge Is Power) magic to strengthen his own. The themes are good vs. evil and using people (and trees) vs. helping and listening, but it’s hard to say whether the worldview is going to come out loosely Christian in the end or more dualistic, like a universe in which good must be balanced with evil. Jinx himself is “the balance” and “The Listener,” whatever those terms mean.

I thought this was a better second book in a trilogy than most. The first in the series, is called simply Jinx, and I wrote about it a few months ago. You should read the first book first, and if you like it as much as I did, then go on to read Jinx’s Magic. I did get some answers to my questions from the first book about the Urwald, Samara, Simon Magus, the Bonemaster, and generally the way Jinx’s world works. I also added a few more questions:

What does it mean that Jinx is “the balance” and “The Listener” and “a wick that burns”?

Are Jinx and the Bonemaster opposite sides of the same coin, so to speak, good and evil in eternal conflict and balance? (I hope not because I don’t really believe in that dualistic philosophy.)

Who are the elves and what is their role in the story of the Urwald?

Can Jinx defeat The Bonemaster and save the Urwald?

Definitely a cliff-hanger ending, and I’m definitely up for the third book in the series. Oh, it might be of interest to some people, in light of all the diversity talk around the kidlitosphere, that Jinx is a “person of color.” His skin color doesn’t really matter to the story, but it is there, for what that’s worth.

QOTD: Speaking of color, Jinx has the magical ability to see a shapes and colors around other people that indicate to him what they are feeling. For instance, when the girl he cares about is feeling admiring and romantic about someone else, Jinx sees pink fluffy thoughts and feelings surrounding her. Another character’s feelings are grey and sharp like knife blades. If we could see what you are feeling right now, what color and shape would your feelings be and what would that color/shape indicate?

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