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Spy, Spy Again (Valdemar: Family Spies) Mass Market Paperback – June 1, 2021
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Thirteen year old Prince Kyril and Mags and Amily's fourteen-year-old son Tory "share" the Gift of Farsight--although neither of them are Chosen. They are self-trained, though currently, their shared Gift only allows them to see what is happening with their immediate family members.
After much debate, the Herald's Collegium has decided to test and train them anyway. That's when the surprises start. They do not share a single Gift; they have two complementary Gifts working together in a way that the Heralds have never seen before. Tory is the Farseer--Kee's Gift is to extend his range beyond a few dozen feet.
Their Gifts become crucial when Mags gets a desperate message from his cousin Bey, the head of the enigmatic assassin-tribe, the Sleepgivers. Bey's eldest daughter has been kidnapped, but he doesn't know why or by whom. He's calling in the debt Mags owes him to find his daughter before it's too late.
Tory is certain that if anyone can find her, he can. But that will mean traveling out of Valdemar into an unknown, dangerous country. And it will mean taking a Royal Prince with him.
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"Eye Spy feels like a present written especially for me. You're gonna want to read it. This one's a firecracker." —Tor.com
"Whether it's the spellbinding world, the intrigue of the plot, or the simple yet remarkable narrative style—it is impossible to say which of these makes the story so good, but one thing is for sure: Closer to Home marks the beginning of another fantastic Lackey series." —RT Reviews
"Mags remains an engaging character, and makes a very capable spy/investigator.... His adventures still make engrossing reading." —Locus
"Returning to her beloved Valdemar universe, Lackey opens her new series at a pivotal time in the history of Valdemar.... Series fans will enjoy the variations on a familiar theme, while enough information is presented for first- timers to discover a world of high adventure and individual courage. Highly recommended." —Library Journal
"Closer to the Heart has the two things that have always made me love these books: a richly detailed history of the world, and beautiful writing." —The Arched Doorway
"Lackey is a master at characterization." —The Ranting Dragon
About the Author
- Publisher : DAW (June 1, 2021)
- Language : English
- Mass Market Paperback : 336 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0756413249
- ISBN-13 : 978-0756413248
- Item Weight : 6 ounces
- Dimensions : 4.19 x 0.85 x 6.75 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #81,639 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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I will admit that I was disappointed that there was no romance between Prince Kyril and Tory, in spite of hints in the previous book and allusions to Prince Kyril's silver eyes. (Oh, Vanyel, you're missed forever.) But Lackey shut that down in the first chapter with a quick "No homo, bro", Valdemar style. It felt like a cop out when I was looking forward to a return to her edgier earlier novels. But if you want a big dose of Valdemar comfort food, this will certainly not disappoint.
Mercedes Lackey does some of the best world building and character development out of all of the different authors that I read. This novel is no exception. We get to learn a lot more about the Sleepgivers and Rethwellan. As always our main characters face some trials and have to make some hard choices. There are some new elemental characters that we haven’t experienced before, and some startling revelations about our characters that may open up new possibilities for future novels. I am a little bit sad that this is the third book in the series, and Mags and Amily’s youngest child, so I am assuming it concludes the Family Spies series. Valdemar novels are all about how hard work, choosing the right friends, and making the right choice instead of the easy choice, are always worth it in the end. They are about doing the right thing, and that is how I live my life. I hope that there are new Valdemar novels in the works, because I love having them to look forward to.
***I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review, and then I bought myself a copy as well because Mercedes Lackey is an auto buy for me.***
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I will note that Sira is a Sleepgiver assassin. She kills without remourse in order to survive and protect her family. But like Tory, I had a hard time justifying killing for money -- And it's done with planning, front and center, not second hand. That's a trigger warning for those that want to know.
The story unwinds as Kee and Tory assist Ahkhan in locating a lost sibling. We learn about the Sleepgiver world and more on Karse. The journey was scenic, believable, and informative. This isn't an action adventure or even a young adult, not with all those hard core killings. It's a nice easy paced world building journey involving three young boys,
Now Kee and Tory were childhood best friends, so close they shared an ability. They grew up in each other's pockets. Partners in crimes, two peas in a pod. When life gets in the way and they go on different paths, I expect a conversation. At least a hug. Words about staying in touch, come visit, you know the standard parting? But no, we don't get any of that. Kee had that with his parents but he doesn't extend the same courtesy to his lifelong friend and confidant. It's no wonder Tory felt lost, I did, too. The resulting bonding was too rushed, -- And it was just odd. It came across as Elissa was a substitute for Kee, with what she said and her own enhancement. Like a rebound lover.
Maybe in the future Tory will do circuit rides and visit his friend and extended family. I feel like that should've happened in this story, to know these two, young men that can finish each others sentences, will still be in touch. I felt cheated.
It's hard to read about these children: Perry, Abi, and Tory, and not see some conclusion in their lives to where they mature and settle down. We're left with them still learning about their gifts and their place in the world. If Tory is only fourteen, he has years of schooling ahead of him, hasn't reached his maturity, and has a long ways to go. I wouldn't exactly call this a coming of age story. More like a step in time with set backs. This story needs a better conclusion, if this is to be the only story on Tory's life. For that price I expected more. - Dan's Wife
Footnote: I have to add. .. This series is tagged as children learning to be the next spy for the king. All that expectation over the whole series and then a one liner by Mags, in effect -- It takes being chosen to be a spy. It's like a back handed slap. Perry can do all he can but would never be the spymaster because he isn't chosen? What?
Top reviews from other countries
The story is interesting and inventive with great characters.
It introduces new characters and you get to experience more of the world of valdermar. Her writing has a really nice personal feel to it feeling a part of it... unlike some books. Enjoy the action and adventure.
Look forward to her next series.