Blogger header image - Legacy of Androva

The Legacy of Androva Series

Isn't the new cover beautiful? It's all thanks to Kerry Hynds for coming up with such an amazing design. She does brilliant work - you can visit her website here to see what I mean.

The seven-pointed star at the top is Jax's Sygnus (now professionally illustrated!). It will represent the Legacy of Androva on all future covers, because Jax is in every book and Shannon has no Sygnus. At least, she has no Sygnus yet ☺

I also joined Twitter a few days ago! You can find me here: @alexcvick and I'd love to hear from you with questions or comments about the books and characters, or recommendations, or just to say hello ☺

When the paperback version goes live, I'll be setting up a giveaway, so check back in a week or so for the details. In the meantime the ebook price is going to stay at $0.99 until the end of July.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend!

There are six disciplines taught at the Seminary of Magic on Androva: Combat, Remedies, History, Living Magic, Physical and Manipulation. Today's post is about Remedies.

I'm going to leave it to one of my characters to explain more, (see early extract from book six below), but the most straightforward definition of Remedies is that they are spells in a bottle. Their primary purpose is medicinal, and a skilled Remedax is able to create sophisticated combinations to treat all manner of illnesses and injuries. However, they can also be used to entertain and confuse, for good reasons and bad, depending on the circumstances and the magician.

Here is what Galen thinks about Remedies when he begins to learn them at the Seminary of Magic:

Remedies took me a long time to learn. I could create the spells, I just couldn’t turn them into remedies.
Spell projection, in the traditional way, was much easier. I could use one or both hands, I could increase or decrease the intensity, I could start and stop as I wished. I tended to adjust spells as I went along, according to how my force field was responding.
However, all remedies, from the most basic to the most complicated, required a completely standardised output of magical energy.
Twenty drops per small bottle, and each drop had to be identical, falling from our fingertips like glittering tears. Different colours according to whichever remedy we were creating.
“No,” said Professor Minra for about the hundredth time. How she managed not to raise her voice, I don’t know. I was close to yelling with frustration.
“This is not an intuitive spell, Galen.” She sighed, tucking a loose strand of blonde hair behind one ear. “It is learnt and then followed precisely. Any remedy you produce will be dangerous unless you can distill your magic properly.”
Evander had a whole row of different coloured bottles next to him, freshly filled with Headache, Fever, Sleep and Portal Remedies. He gave me a slightly smug smile.
“Professor’s pet,” I grumbled.
“Hilarious,” he countered, “coming from you. You do realise you’re top of the class in everything else?”
Well, on balance, I suppose I didn’t think that particular insult through.
I couldn’t come up with a reply, and he grinned.

If you could design your own Remedy, what would you create? Something practical or perhaps something more fun? I hope you enjoyed today's post and thank you for reading!

This weekend got off to a great start, because I woke up to the news that Literary Titan has given Breaking Magic one of its gold awards! You can see the webpage here: July 2017 Awards
I hope your weekend is going well too, however you choose to spend it ☺

There are six disciplines taught at the Seminary of Magic on Androva: Combat, Remedies, History, Living Magic, Physical and Manipulation. Today's post is about Combat.

Androvans fight using magic, with the sole intention of disabling their opponent's force field. At the coming of age ceremony the Finality Spell joins the force field irrevocably to the mind and body, therefore if the force field is incapacitated, so is the magician. The Code recognises three Combat Spells, and these are considered to be the only correct way of fighting. All magicians are required to reach a certain standard in this discipline, and there are particular professions where excellence is a prerequisite, such as being a custodian.

The Containment Spell
This is the most commonly used of the three spells. A circular band of concentrated magical energy is projected by each opposing magician as fast as possible. The magician whose band gets to his opponent first is much more likely to win. The band disappears inside the head to tighten around the source of the force field. It feels icy cold and very painful.

Resisting makes the pain worse. The only way out (apart from conceding the fight) is for a magician to suppress his or her force field and manipulate it around the band. In this way a counter attack can be launched. Of course, the attacking magician will prevent this if they can.

The Containment Spell is a test of nerve as much as a test of magical strength and skill. Some magicians are never able to overcome the panic they feel at the initial sensation of having their heads invaded.
The Scattering Spell
The easiest of the three spells, and considered to be the least effective, the Scattering Spell disperses the opponent's force field as if a magical bomb had been detonated. It is painless, but can feel quite disorientating.

For most magicians on the receiving end, it takes only a small amount of time to gather the force field together in sufficient strength to fight back. The spell is most often used as a delaying tactic, or in group Combat sessions as part of an overall strategy.
The Immobility Spell
By far the most difficult of the three, this spell, as its name suggests, prevents movement. However, there can be quite a wide range of outcomes depending on the strength of the magician using the spell.

Most magicians can only project a weaker version of a true Immobility Spell, which slows down their opponent or perhaps even stops them completely for a few seconds. Practicing this spell is a great way for a magician to strengthen his or her magic, even if the spell remains beyond their ability.

A true Immobility Spell is unstoppable and absolute. Taken to its limit, it will not just prevent movement and speech, but also breathing, and even the ability to think.

My characters all have different preferences and skills when it comes to Combat Spells. Even Penny, after a slow start, is getting the hang of them. Shannon, of course, is the queen of Immobility Spells, and Jax and Darius never hesitate to use containment bands to settle arguments. I hope you enjoyed today's post and thank you for reading!

Illumination Spells are interesting, because they evolve along with the magician's ability. They range from the functional to the fantastic, from simple globes of magical energy which are suspended on walls and ceilings to dazzling firework displays at Spring Festival.

Most magicians have a preferred Illumination Spell by the time they come of age. Jax's mother, for example, would create a never-ending waterfall of silver stars. His father, on the other hand, prefers something much more ordinary. Revus usually projects a plain yellow circle. It's very self-contained, and it does exactly what it is supposed to do, rather like Revus himself.

In today's post I'm going to share the Illumination Spells my characters are creating right now. They're all taking third year classes at the Seminary of Magic on Androva, and these spells demonstrate their respective personalities as well as their abilities.

He has a tendency to just throw the most powerful spell he can create onto the wall next to him, too impatient to spend time creating a visual masterpiece. In Jax's opinion, there are more interesting spells he could be working on. However, it's very noticeable that his Illumination Spells are becoming gradually more purple, which happens to be Shannon's favourite colour. If he were challenged about it, he would probably get embarrassed and deny the connection, but it looks obvious to me!
She is going through a phase of experimenting with animals. Her most recent one, as you can see, is a dolphin. Shannon readily admits she is not as artistic as Penny, so she sticks to simple shapes. Once, Penny encouraged her to be more ambitious, and she tried to create a horse. Unfortunately, it ended up looking more like a lopsided dog, which the others found hilarious. Shannon got her revenge in the next Combat lesson though!
She also created this green J when she was spending a rare night at home on Terra last week. I guess it's a bit like the magical equivalent of doodling your boyfriend's name!
He chooses geometrical shapes, because he likes predictability and being able to keep to the boundaries he sets for himself. He never makes a decision in haste. I've got a feeling all that might change for Darius in a future book, but for now, this triangle suits him very well.
She is a big fan of dragons, as you will know if you've read Controlling Magic. It took her a long time until she was happy with the final outcome, but she recently managed to create a dragon Illumination Spell. I can't see her changing it for something else anytime soon!

I'm writing Galen's story for the sixth book in the series, so I thought I would share his Illumination Spell too. He is a bit older than the others at nearly seventeen. He likes creating birds, because he can manipulate their tail feathers and wings to increase or decrease the amount of light they produce. Usually his birds are red and silver, his favourite colours, but there is a reason in the book why he changes to the colour blue instead.

I hope you enjoyed today's post and thank you for reading! What would your Illumination Spell look like?

Mailing List Subscription

Sign up for the chance to receive advance reader copies and regular updates!

* indicates required