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Item - Spellbound

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Series: Dragontales — no. 7
Author: Vilott-Salsitz, Rhondi
Illustrators: Hallman, Tom (cover)
Tanz, Freya (interior)
Date: 1984
ISBN: 0451132858 / 9780451132857
Length: 190 pages (introductory section plus 47 "Pathways")
Kveto's Thoughts:

This is my second foray into Dragontales, a series I'm growing to like. This is an odd numbered book meaning you portray a female character, so the romance angle is stronger.

You play a student of magic who can't quite master her spells correctly. Your teacher sends you on a mission to another wizard and adventure ensues. It does a fairly good job of capturing adolescent concerns and budding romance with some low-key action. A high number of endings as well as some hard choices make it interesting.

My main question is that your female teacher can fall in love with the rival wizard who happens to be a centaur, which always lends me to wonder exactly how that works. You know what I mean. I guess I shouldn't think about it so much. In the end, we are all half centaur.

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yangkymyin's Thoughts:

I liked Spellbound pretty well, but I do have a bone or three to pick with it. The first problem I have is this: The centaur on the cover, Thoren, is described in the book about fifty thousand times. His picture is on the cover, Rhondi, we knew what he looked like before we knew who he was, LOL. The second problem is in the love interests -- It is interesting that the two choices you have are completely different -- One is very much a "bad boy," and the other is the typical "good ol' boy." The bad boy, Barek, was the first one I myself came across, but to be honest I didn't trust him from the get-go. And I was right not to -- Most of the book, he's a total jerk, if not downright evil. But when I came across the other love interest, Rob, he was so dreadfully boring that I actually ended up preferring Barek -- And I am not the type of girl who usually prefers the bad boy! My last issue is that the main character herself, Lisa, can be a bit of a whiner and a weakling. But then again, not every character can be strong and strong-willed, and this gives her an element of realism as a human character. Despite these traits, she does manage to stick up for herself when she really ought to, so she's not so much of a doormat that I can't relate to her -- She's just got self-esteem issues, and considering her problems with not being able to properly utilize her magic, this isn’t unbelievable.

Despite these few things I didn't like, I found most of the endings in this book to be interesting -- Even and especially some of the bad ones. There's actually a couple endings where you end up cursing yourself and heading down the path of evil, which despite liking to do the moral thing most of the time, I found more interesting and satisfying than some of the good endings. Some of the good endings were a little bland, but enough of them were satisfactory enough that it all balanced out.

So to sum things up -- I wasn’t spellbound by Spellbound, but it was worth reading.

More reviews by yangkymyin

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