Mark Reads ‘High Wizardry’: Chapter 7

In the seventh chapter of High Wizardry, Nita and Kita ready themselves for tracking down Dairine, who is busy planet skipping to avoid capture. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Young Wizards



So maybe I don’t have an idea where this book is going, but at least I’ve got a sense for what’s happened so far! I felt validated by the opening of chapter seven because it worked so well as a validation of my analysis that Dairine must deal with wizardry in a more external manner than Kit and Nita do. There are still external elements to their magic, of course; occasionally, they need physical objects to complete a working. But in the end, their wizardry requires recitation, memorization, and familiarity. I don’t think that makes Dairine’s wizardry any less valid; her mind is better adapted to the computerized manual, anyway.

Each person’s Ordeal is suited to their talents and specialities, though, so that’s really all that Nita has to offer her parents when it comes to Dairine. Look, I can’t even fathom how scary and bewildering this whole thing is for them. Not only did they just find out Nita is a wizard after she and Kit TOOK THEM TO THE MOON, but now their other daughter is LITERALLY BEYOND THE GALAXY on some vague “ordeal,” and there is absolutely, completely, and wholly 100% nothing they can do to help her or protect her. I’d say that’s a parental nightmare if I’ve ever heard one. They recognize that this is important, but that doesn’t alleviate their fear, does it? Dairine will still be abnormal and changed when she gets back. Both their kids could be called upon to save the world at any point in time.

They’re helpless. WHEW, THAT’S FRIGHTENING.


You know, as soon as I got excited that Dairine had figured out that the BEMs were tracking her, I then realized what a bad thing this was. Yes, it allows her computer time to work on the program Dairine gave it, but it also means that she’ll be harder to track down. I’m hoping that there’s some sort of special connection siblings have that Nita can exploit. Otherwise, Nita might hit a dead end WHERE BEMs ARE WAITING.

We get glimpses of SO MANY worlds in this chapter, though, so there’s also a selfish part of me that’s glad she has to keep running. What are these worlds??? What are they like? What’s the name of the city full of bustling people who have lots of legs? WHAT IS THE ANARCH OF DELEIAN IV? Was that library from Doctor Who? What about the planet with a “pinkish sea?” It’s all so mysterious and I want to know so much more!

In the end, Dairine lands on a planet made of silicon,  though I should note that the journey there is the most painful of all of Dairine’s trip. Is that because of the distance? The energy required to make such a trip? I have no idea where she is in the universe, but the unnamed planet she ends up on, where she is “expected,” is ENORMOUS. Like, I never really thought about how I have a very specific frame of mind for a “horizon,” meaning that if I was on a planet bigger or smaller than Earth, the horizon wouldn’t look the same at all. Look how much I take for granted! It’s sort of like that scene in the last chapter where Dairine realized the sky wasn’t a ceiling. Her perspective changes, as does the scope of her environment, and that’s such an odd thing to think of.

But hey, at least Dairine takes all of this in stride. I’m so impressed at her resilience. Like Nita said, she’s a problem solver, and it’s a delight watching her put all the pieces together and figure out how to use wizardry better. Hell, she even does research on the Lone Power (which allows her to learn about the events in Deep Wizardry) after sensing him in the darkness of her initial planet jumps. That’s so smart!!! Of course, it makes sense that she’d eventually make a mistake. I’m not sure I understand what happens to her computer at the end of the chapter. I’m sure that the fact that it asked her for permission to use geothermal energy on the planet is tied to it overloading. Why did it ask for permission when it never did before? What am I missing? How can she possibly do anything if her computer breaks??? I’M SCARED.

Diane Duane is still offering a massive discount on the first 9 books in the Young Wizards series just to this community, so please take advantage of this deal while you still can:

Mark Links Stuff

I am now on Patreon! There are various levels of support, from $1 up to whatever you want! You’ll get to read a private blog, extra reviews, and other such rewards.
– I will be at numerous conventions in 2016! Check the full list of events on my Tour Dates / Appearances page.
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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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