A Perilous Power

A Perilous Power by E. Rose Sabin (0-765-30859-2)
This prequel to A School for Sorcery shares the same breakneck pace and impending feeling of danger. The books are set in a Victorian fantasy world where some people are born with magical powers and are feared and hated by those without them. Perilous Power is filled with vivid characters and a good story, but there is one nagging issue throughout the book, the love between Les (one of the main characters) and Miryam, a magically gifted girl. The love between the two seems to appear suddenly with no building and yet is the basis of a large amount of the book. Because the love story is weak, it weakens the rest of the tale. However, the action and adventure in the book still make it worth reading.
Recommend to teens who enjoy fantasy, especially boys who will enjoy two strong but very different male protagonists. There is no need to have read School for Sorcery first, though readers of that book will recognize characters.