I recently talked about the author L.E. Modesitt Jr. and his book, Natural Ordermage.  Well, there was a second piece to that story that takes up almost immediately where the first book left off: Mage-Guard of Hamor.

Again, this is set in the Recluse saga and follows the further adventures of Rahl, Recluse exile who is forced to make his way in Hamor, which is about as far from Recluse and it’s order as one can get.

In this second adventure for Rahl, he is still trying to learn what he is and what he can do, but he has a teacher now in the form of Taryl, a man who once held a position of some power and influence who stepped down ‘for the greater good’, but still sticks around and does what he can for king and country.

Now that he’s proven himself useful, Rahl is quickly moving up within the ranks of the Mage-Guards thanks to Taryl’s constant testing and pushing.  A war is on, and the Emperor’s brother is trying to take over Hamor – it’s up to Rahl annd Taryl to see to it that the rebellion is crushed, the traitors flushed out and destroyed, and order restored to Hamor.

This is another excellent offering from Modesitt and broadens the world of Recluse once again.  We see more of Hamor as Rahl makes his way across country to quell the rebellion.  As a character, Rahl has to come to terms with who he is and what he can do, and the difference between him and other Odermages we’ve seen in other books is that he can’t really be taught – he can be shown.  Taryl is constantly pushing him to try things for himself because the only way he’ll ever be able to survive is if he can figure out what he can do and the best way to do it.

I read this one much quicker than the first, Natural Ordermage.  I was already well entrenched with the character and the story from the first book, and wanted to see where it would go and I wasn’t disappointed.  I thought we might see some Druid action in this one, as Rahl came across a forest similar to the ones we’ve seen in other books, full of stun lizards and so much life order senses don’t work, but, alas, it was not to be.  I suppose there are enough Druids in the Recluse books for now…

Check it out when you get a chance.