An arch-mage can handle almost anything. Unless he’s cursed, lost his job and facing an unknown enemy.
The Gallantean Empire relies increasingly upon magical technology which cleans sewers, runs trams and much more. Within the capital city of Cal Rindon, magic is pervasive, but not necessarily used without crime involved. The bustling metropolis boasts constant innovations mixed with growing pains. Amid the good lurks the bad with unrest and growing crime.
Arch-mage Manny Mandeheim fell under a curse, watched his fiancé die, and then lost his job as a spy. So what’s an arch-mage to do? Start his own magical investigation service while he works to clear his good name and maybe avenge his lost love. With his very un-magical partner, Wish Ackford, Manny discovers the menace of a much larger conspiracy than he expected looming behind his curse. Suddenly, the limitations from the hex leave him at a distinct disadvantage as he and Wish investigate.
Assassins lurk at every corner or in every tram car. The threat of an unknown mastermind with murky intentions lingers just out of sight. A questionable source offers the hint of a secret order hounding Manny’s footsteps. A murder leads to wrenching discoveries.
Nothing an arch-mage can’t handle…
Unless the curse limits how much magic he can use or kills him outright.
A mixture of Sherlock Holmes and Harry Potter, The Order of the Dark Rose is set in an alternate fantasy world where magic is both commonplace and dangerous. Mysteries abound in this original, new fantasy from P. H. Solomon, author of the award-winning, best-selling epic fantasy series, The Bow of Hart Saga.
Can Manny survive long enough to break his curse? Or will the arch-mage’s hidden foe escape him? Click the Your Favorite Retailer button to enter this high concept world of magic and fantasy to discover more about Manny and Wish.
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Reviewed By Rabia Tanveer for Readers’ Favorite
The Order of the Dark Rose is the first novel in The Cursed Mage Case Files series by P. H. Solomon. This epic fantasy is set in a world where magic is real and integrated into daily life. Manny Mandeheim, an arch-mage, was once a spy, but all that changed when his fiancé passed away; he was cursed and lost his social standing. In order to redeem his name, he opened his own investigation company with Wish Ackford and tried to look for a reason why he was cursed. However, the more they delved deeper into the mystery, the more complex it became. Before Manny and Wish knew it, they were knee-deep in a conspiracy that could very much end their lives. They were nowhere near figuring out who was the person behind this yet the danger only increased. All they needed was a single nudge in the right direction. But would they get it? Or was it already too late?
The Order of the Dark Rose gave me serious Arthur Conan Doyle and Agatha Christie vibes, and I loved it. P. H. Solomon’s narrative style is very similar to these literary legends. I could find similarities in the way the author introduced the action, pushed it forward, and made it an integral part of the story. The mystery and suspense were alive in the story, and that was all thanks to how the author handled the main plot while supporting it with equally important subplots. The flow was incredible, the world-building was “magical” and the character development was brilliant as well. There was hardly a moment when I was frustrated with Manny or wanted him to do something differently. He was smart, he was calculating, and he was ready to do something about his predicament. Overall, a great start to a fantastic new series!
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Reviewed By Trisha Dawn for Readers’ Favorite
P. H. Solomon’s The Order of the Dark Rose: The Cursed Mage Case Files Book 1 is a story about an arch-mage named Mandlefred Mandeheim or Manny for short, who lost everything he had, including his job, after falling under a curse during one of his operations. After barely surviving the unfortunate curse bomb and watching his friends and the love of his life die, Manny had to start anew, but he had set his mind on finding the one who had caused the deaths of the people who were important to him. He finds someone who possesses no magical powers compared to himself, but Wishton Ackford proves to be a reliable partner to him. Still, his troubles are not over; assassins and the mysterious mastermind who is yet to be caught still linger around every corner. With the curse still affecting Manny’s overall condition and magic, will they be able to survive this mess and catch the adversary who cost Manny almost everything?
The Order of the Dark Rose is perfect for readers who are fond of mystery and fantasy. From mysterious murders to mages, magical artifacts, and magical monsters, this book has more than enough adventures to keep you hooked all throughout the story. I loved how Wishton’s character is courageous and can stand his own ground, despite not having any magical powers. After losing so many important people, I am glad Manny managed to find a confidant in him. I also adored Manny’s character, his unyielding attitude, and determination to catch the person behind the wrongdoings were truly admirable and my heart ached for him when I recalled everything he had been through. Manny went through a lot and I am sure it wasn’t easy for him to continue pursuing the cause of the deaths of his loved ones, but I can respect his need to find answers behind that one operation that went wrong. Joining Manny and Wishton on their journey to find out the truth was truly a privilege. This book is amazing and the ending had me craving more. I can’t wait to find out what happens next! Great work!
Reviewed By Vincent Dublado for Readers’ Favorite
The Order of the Dark Rose, the first book in The Cursed Mage Case Files shows signs of promise as a series. Author P.H. Solomon welcomes you to the capital city of Cal Rindon, where magic is the lifeblood that runs its industries and is equally abused in criminal activities. Manny Mandeheim used to be an arch-mage with good standing, but it all disappeared when he falls upon a curse, witnesses his fiancée Adrienne die, and loses his career in espionage. As a former spy, he has a need to find out who is behind everything, for it is his way back and the way to honor Adrienne’s memory. But as he becomes more deeply concerned with clearing his name than understanding the depth of his case, it might be too late for him to realize that he has been looking in the wrong direction and that uncovering the mystery may not be to his liking.
If J.R.R. Tolkien and Arthur Conan Doyle were neighbors, this is the kind of story that would likely result in their collaborative writing. You might suspect that P.H. Solomon is a real mage by the way he delves into the motivation of his protagonist. Think of The Order of the Dark Rose as a sleight of hand in the form of fiction. Solomon shows you one thing in his right hand, only to make it disappear and pop up in his left hand. Much like Mandeheim’s investigation, it will yield promising leads and clues to the point that trust becomes an issue, and this serves to thicken the plot. It is all about the whodunit that is set in a fantastic realm. In the end, some major answers will be revealed, but more is still left to be uncovered. This is fairly reasonable for a fantasy mystery series in keeping the wheels of suspense turning.