Would it kill you to create something genuinely new? In Robert’s world, it used to.
Divine retribution for invention is now a thing of the past. Young, optimistic, quick of mind and quick to act, Robert thinks being invited to the New School is an invitation to change the world.
Nothing is as simple as it first seems, least of all change. Robert is surprised and frustrated by everything from his classmates Koria and Eloise stalking him, to protestors claiming that the new grain is poison and its inventors should be murdered like in the old days. Worse yet, Robert has a dangerous, flash temper that is triggered by a campus assault. His anger has ties to a forgotten childhood, but Robert cannot change the world if he does not even understand himself.
At the same time as Robert struggles on campus, a powerful, ruthless sociopath known only as the Lonely Wizard journeys across a desolate wilderness to return to his dying mother. As Robert and the Lonely Wizard head towards a collision, Robert finds that instead of entering a golden age of innovation, he may instead be on the brink of a cold war and a return to the stultifying, changeless dark age.
Hunt proves himself a detailed worldbuilder, lavishing pages on futures trading and farm technology. This makes for a slow opening, but the story picks up once Robert meets his fellow students, each vividly drawn and transcending type. The group’s dialogue is raucous and its camaraderie affecting. Robert also experiences love, spurred by a pair of female classmates who seem to be stalking him, and rage, which stirs powerfully in him when a woman named Syriol is assaulted on campus. Syriol is an all but voiceless victim who “probably doesn't understand how she feels” and is healed by Robert’s unexplained love for her, a depiction that undermines Hunt’s earnest efforts to critique rape culture and the objectification of women.
Concerned with economics, architecture, and its protagonist’s philosophical musings, the novel moves deliberately, caught up in mind and milieu rather than plot. Readers eager for a thoughtful challenge to genre conventions will appreciate Hunt’s rigorous reimagining of how a society with access to magic might endeavor to train and regulate its users. The abrupt conclusion wraps up too few mysteries, setting the stage for the second book in the series. In Hunt’s immersive and intricate world, the big picture occasionally gets lost beneath the fine details, but this is a compelling story for readers who crave complex worldbuilding.
Takeaway: This intricate, philosophical update to the wizard-school story will appeal to fans of cerebral fantasy.
Great for fans of Lev Grossman’s Magicians trilogy, Daniel Abraham’s Long Price Quartet.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: B+
Awesome book! A must read for anyone who loves fantasy and/or physics
Overall the book had an interesting feel. While being considered fantasy, this world felt more real world, when compared to the fantasy seen in Tolkien or Brandon Sanderson. It is an age of new inventions and discovery and is reminiscent of the start of the industrial revolution in our world history. But not all is well and the discord that is shown in the book mirrors issues in our current society making the world setting for the story feel real.
The characters are also very relatable, I myself see a lot of myself in the main character and resonate with him, and the many others in the book feel like real people each with strengths and flaws and development.
The story of the main character follows a common coming of age story, where he is off onto a new chapter of his life along all the growth that comes with that. The idea of learning who you are and what you can do to change the world is a strong theme that is easy to connect with.
I was interested by the traumatic event that occurs mid-book. It is dark and adult in nature, and not something I would have expected to be addressed in a fantasy setting. But Lee uses this event to not only do something drastic and different, but also have the characters bond and grow from the event. I admit I had mixed feelings about including something of this nature in the story, but seeing how the characters and story grew from it was interesting and gave me something to think about and reflect upon in my own life.
The themes of science, invention, and mathematics are strong throughout the story, though one thing I love is that you don't need to be a scientist or mathematician to understand the concepts. You will learn as the main character learns and it's written in a way that makes it understandable. Don't worry, there's no equations or test for you as the reader.
By the end of the story I felt connected to the characters and invested in the world. I wanted to know what would happen next and jumped into Herald, the second book of the series, right away. I recommend this book for anyone who has a love of fantasy and/or science and math. Come journey into a new world where life, death, creation, and invention are all connected. Come change the world for better or perhaps for the worse.
If you made a mixture of Game Of Thrones and an adult version of Harry Potter, you would get this.
I felt that if Joe Abercrombie were to write a mixture of Game Of Thrones and an adult version of Harry Potter, you would get this. But a new author beat him to it! After reading an advanced copy, I found that the whole story never dragged and was quite energetic, along with dark humor. The plot was very interactive and needed 100% of your attention to follow. The characters are well-developed while slowly changing/evolving throughout the book. I found the character interactions were subtle, complex, and at times unpredictable.
Excellent world building
Lee is a master world builder - creating a place and a cast of characters you want to spend more time with than the story allows. Thank goodness this is just the first book in the series!If you're looking for an engrossing read, this won't disappoint!
What a great read!
What a great read! I found it harder to put the book down as the story developed and the main characters progressively grew on me. The Author rolled out the history of Wizardry with the ingenious approach of transforming the concept into a more scientific one, employing mathematics and physics into - Dynamics. The mix of describing the subtleties of each character, with elements of humour, suspense and mystery within the plot helped propel me to keep reading. Thank you Lee Hunt! I m looking forward to Book 2!
An incredible book!
Having received an advanced reading copies of the Trilogy, I can honestly say this is an excellent book! Dynamicist has all the elements of a great fantasy novel; magic, excitement, adventure and daring. It is a character driven novel, and the characters are fantastic. They are strong and intelligent young women; enthusiastic, logical, and sensitive young men; brilliant professors, and fascinating but unstable old wizards. I personally relate to several elements of Eloise, she is definitely one of my favourite characters! It has a highly interesting undercurrent around a the impacts of a newly bred cereal crop, it's economics and overall social impacts, which is far more entertaining and dramatic that one would have expected! The exploration of this new grain mirrors some of the challenges we face today, which heightens the intrigue. The wonderful connections between magic, physics, chemistry, psychology, math, statistics, philosophy, high adventure, logical discussion, and the pains of growing up are all woven together in a wonderful book that will leave you hankering for the rest of the trilogy.
A Great Dark Fantasy Read
This may be Lee Hunt's first book, but it was an epic read. I got an advanced copy and was instantly hooked. The book starts off by setting a tone on how the character's thoughts and curiosities interact with their environment, culture, and society. Majority of the characters are well thought and fleshed out. In my opinion you are going to love some and hate some as you read, but that is what makes it such a great book.
I found there was a significant amount of suspense and build-up to the main plot, and I strongly believe all fantasy readers will enjoy reading Lee'ss debut book as it will instantly pull them in!
A fantastic fantasy novel
A well written book that made for an enjoyable read. The story moves along at an excellent pace in a uniquely developed fantasy world with engaging characters. It's easy to get engrossed as Robert and his classmates experiences escalate in intensity throughout the tale.The Dynamicist reminds me a lot of reading The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss, easy to get immersed in the world, and I feel like the story is just beginning. Looking forward to the other books in this trilogy.
This is a dark epic fantasy for the ages! A great and engaging read.
Does not dissapoint
I was fortunate to get my hands on an advanced copy of this book. Lee’s book is ambitious with plenty of world-building, intriguing characters, and a build-up to a fantastic plot.
The whole book has just enough intrigue and mystery on how everything will be played out to keep readers (like myself) interested. It is a long book and sometimes complicated, but the storyline, characters, and how the characters interact are compelling enough to keep reading. I highly recommend reading and am excited about the release of the 2nd book.
A great first book and a complexing read.
Lee Hunt has created a a great first book here in the Dynamicist. A great mix of action, mystery, and a telling and powerful internal logic and morality that weaves through the book. The magic system with its mix of physics and magic and the conflict between different approaches to magic as well as world design are really well done. I read the first book in two days and cannot wait to read the second book. Highly recommend this book.
Couldn't put it down
The Dynamicist is a truly great story. Mr. Hunt's magical descriptions of technological developments and the social issues they cause brought back fun and sometimes concerning memories of my prairie friends and family. The chapters are short so could be read before bed to bring enjoyable dreams. Chapter Two caught my imagination and I had trouble putting the book down. I look forward to Robert Endicott's adventures and education for becoming a Dynamicist in book two and hope it will be released soon. WELL DONE MR. HUNT!
GREAT NEW SERIES - 'MAGIC' AND SOCIAL UNREST COLLIDE
I must say, when I picked up the Dynamicist for the first time, I was unsure of what to expect. Boy, was I pleasantly surprised! I found it to be an excellent and fast paced read with very strong character development. Perhaps not quite as much blood and gore and ‘intimate’ scenes as I might normally like but I was very impressed. I look forward to the release of book II in the trilogy later this year. I have been asked a number of times to describe the series which is not easily placed in a traditional genre. Now, when asked to describe the Dynamicist, I say ‘imagine if Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged world collided with slightly older versions of the students at Hogwart’s Academy.’ Give it a read!