The Gate Thief
By Orson Scott Card, 2013
This is the second book in the Mither Mages trilogy. Card is more well known for his Ender’s Games series, but I’ve enjoyed this trilogy. It is a rehashing of the Greek/Norse/Egyptian/etc. gods of mythology set in the modern era when the gods know they have weak magical powers but the vast majority of earth does not know the gods still exist.
The story follows one of the mages who has the ability to restore the powers of all the gods on earth. He hesitates to do this because he knows the gods will rekindle their wars from long ago and enslave/harm the normal people of the world. However, as the story goes on, a more sinister and more ancient war comes to light that overshadows the gods’ inter-tribal qualms. The book ends with the main character facing a deadly encounter with the main enemy in this ancient war, and it sets the stage for an epic final novel.
The book is somewhat fast-paced but is slowed by Card’s need to describe the other worlds involved in the story and to explain the powers of the mages. That kind of hinders the book, but is probably a necessary evil. Additionally, it gets a little too deep into teenage hormones and humor, as the main character is high school aged. Besides those two faults, it’s a pretty good read. This is the 17th book written or co-written by Card that I have read.