Reviews for Lost Gate : A Novel of the Mither Mages

Booklist Reviews 2013 March #2
Teenager Danny North has always suspected he was different from other members of his family, and you should know right off the bat that the members of Danny's family are, or rather used to be, gods. Danny's immediate relatives were formerly known as Odin, Thor, and Freya. For the past 14 centuries, ever since Loki closed the space-time gates that linked the planet Mittlegard (otherwise known as Earth) to far-off Westil, the once-powerful gods have existed as shadows of their former selves. But that could be about to change because Danny discovers that he possesses that rarest of gifts: he can create gates. Problem is, Danny's family and the other families have a long-standing agreement that any "gatemage" will be killed immediately, to keep any one family from having the power to create gates and return to Westil (and regain its full powers). So Danny goes on the run, hiding among the drowthers (ordinary humans), but a mage as powerful as Danny can't keep himself hidden for long, and soon he's locked in battle with a powerful and dangerous opponent, with the fate of humanity at stake. Card has a lot on his plate, here: he's creating not just a fictional world but also a mythology and an internally consistent magic system to go with it. But that's the sort of thing he's so very good at, and his legion of fans--especially devotees of his classic novel Ender's Game, which also features a boy discovering his unique gifts--should enjoy this similar tale immensely. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2010 November #2

First of a fantasy series about overweening magic power, from the author of Hidden Empire (2009).

The Norths of Virginia are one of many clans of mages who have been trapped for centuries in Mittelgard (Earth) after a powerful enemy closed the magical gates to their homeworld, Westil. Lacking better things to do, the clans settled in as gods, fighting amongst themselves and enslaving the "drowthers" (ordinary nonmagical folk). But, dreading the entity that closed the gates and permanently steals the magic from anyone attempting to get it back, the clan immediately kills those who manifest any such ability. Young Danny North knows his family history, and also that he has no magic power whatsoever—until he discovers that he's unconsciously been creating and using gates. Nobody, it seems, knows his secret until a girl from a visiting magical family catches him. With no choice but to flee, Danny ends up far away in the house of the mysterious Stone, an "orphan" with magic but kin to none of the families—and he's not the only one. Danny needs to understand and develop his powers before his vengeful relatives or the unknown gate thief catch up with him, but little is known about gatemagery save for a handful of cryptic writings in ancient books. Stone, possibly, can help. Card always writes with insight and compassion about children—here it's the irrational, arbitrary and often just plain stupid adults who fail to convince.

An uncharacteristically lumpy series opener, though Card's storytelling skills and devoted audience guarantee success.

Copyright Kirkus 2010 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Library Journal Reviews 2011 January #1

Danny North comes from an unusual family where magical abilities are the norm. His apparent lack of magic makes him a "drekka," until he discovers that he is capable of creating gates between one place and another or between one world and another. This type of magic has been forbidden for centuries and is punishable by death. Striking out on his own, Danny flees the family compound and seeks to discover a way to live as the first Gate Mage in a thousand years. Card's latest novel demonstrates his ability to create youthful protagonists whose coming-of-age resonates with depth and meaning even as they become the fulcrum of events on a grand scale. VERDICT The author of Ender's Game brings his masterful storytelling to a new series that should find favor among his many fans as well as readers looking for more stories in the Harry Potter vein.

[Page 86]. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2010 November #2

Card's newest series opener can't decide whether it's a thought experiment featuring a nifty magic system, a YA urban fantasy, or a series of fantasy interludes, so it settles for performing all three tasks satisfactorily, if not spectacularly. Danny North, descendant of exiled mages from another world, is taken aback when he comes into his true powers as a gatemage. He could reconnect his people with their long-lost home world, but gatemages are usually killed to maintain a fragile peace among the exiled clans. Fleeing his home, Danny finds refuge and slowly explores his potential, planning to open the first Great Gate in 14 centuries. Meanwhile, on the far-off world of Westil, a young gatemage named Wad finds love, conspiracies, and betrayal in a remote castle while struggling to recall his hazy past. Though occasionally uneven and meandering, this ambitious tale is well crafted, highly detailed, and pleasantly accessible. (Jan.)

[Page ]. Copyright 2010 PWxyz LLC

VOYA Reviews 2011 June
Like Ender Wiggin in Ender's Game (Tor, 1994), Danny North is destined to be the rescuer of his people. Danny discovers he is a gatemage, challenged to restore the "gates" destroyed by the trickster god Loki. Without these gates, the god-like clans are trapped in our drowther world of space-time science, cut off from the magic-filled world of Westil. They still possess soul-like outselves and create clants, golem-like pseudoselves enabling them to work at a distance--unless they are weakling drekka, as Danny first appears to be. Alternating with Danny's scrapes and self-discovery are those of the young Westilian gatemage, Wad. While both have instant escape clauses thanks to their gatemaking abilities, there are plenty of close calls to keep the parallel stories moving toward their final collision. Some readers, though, may wish for more Wad and less Danny, especially in those sections where Danny converses at length with drowther Victoria von Roth about the history and mechanics of gods, gates, and gating Readers who appreciated the breakneck pace of the Ender series will be justifiably tempted to skip these parts for the next stop in Westil. This title contains a smattering of sex; thirteen-year-old Danny is sexually accosted by Lana, a young woman whose mother threw her in as a bonus to generous boyfriends, and young Wad surreptitiously fathers the firstborn of Queen Bexoi. Both scenes are appropriately written, but librarians may want to be aware of them as they match the book with the right young readers.--Donna Phillips 4Q 4P J S Copyright 2011 Voya Reviews.