Foundation by Mercedes Lackey
Mags works in a mine. He is one of many orphans who are essentially slaves working to extract sparklies, and when he doesn't find enough of them, he is starved and beaten. His meager existence changes drastically when a Companion chooses him to become a Herald. He begins his training in the midst of the founding of the Herald Collegium.
This is the beginning of the latest series in Lackey's Valdemar world, which has always been full of warm and fuzzy. I was actually somewhat disappointed by this return although I was really eager to read it because I remember loving Valdemar.
Perhaps it's simply that I don't remember all the references made to previous stories. The Companion was too smug and cuddly, and the main character Mags was too cookie-cutter or something along those lines. I just didn't enjoy this book as much as Lackey's previous works.
This is not to say that I didn't enjoy the book because I did. It was heroic, good triumphs over evil, and exactly the way I remembered Valdemar to be. Unfortunately, that also made it somewhat formulaic. Hopefully, the rest of the series will turn out to be more interesting.
Star Rating: 3.0/5.0
For an explanation of the Star Rating go here.