There is a book I have fond memories for, but I can't remember many details and especially not the name of the series. I read it nearly 20 years ago when I was 8 or 9 I believe.

The details I do remember are shaky but are as follows.

  • It was about a young boy (shocker)
  • I believe he lived with his aunt until an old guy came that his aunt knew
  • He could use magic and was taught by the old guy
  • The magic was done by saying what you wanted to do. For example I remember a scene where he wanted to push a boulder and said that he wanted to fly or something but he didn't say he wanted to be braced and when he said it he was pushed into the ground instead.
  • I remember there was a love interest later in the series.
  • I remember something about an assassin after him I believe.

I know a lot of this might not be helpful or otherwise very generic fantasy tropes but if anyone recognizes the series I'd appreciate it greatly if you could tell me..

The books I know it's not is the Furies of Calderon/series by Jim Butcher or Dave Duncan's "A Man of His Word."

  • 3
    If someone posts the correct answer, you can accept it by clicking on the checkmark by the voting buttons as per the tour.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Apr 15, 2021 at 3:40

2 Answers 2


The Belgariad by David Eddings

Garion is the young boy, who lives with his Aunt Pol (actually Polgara the sorceress) on Faldor's farm for the first part of his life. "Old Wolf" - later identified as Belgarath (and Pol's father) visits form time to time. Eventually Garion is targeted by the assassin Brill, resulting in Belgarath and Aunt Pol leaving with Garion.

As the series progresses, Garion meets and eventually romances Princess Ce'Nedra. He also learns to use his powers in a deliberate way, with one of his early efforts to move a boulder resulting in him pushing himself into the soft ground due to failing to brace himself.

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    ^_^ "generic fantasy tropes" is exactly what Eddings was going for. The book basically was his proof that you could use every standard trick in the book and still have a good book if written well.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Apr 15, 2021 at 3:11
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    And to complete the identification, the "saying what you wanted" was known as "the Will and the Word". Apr 15, 2021 at 7:51
  • And if it is this, can be duped to scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/108699/…
    – Dijkgraaf
    Apr 15, 2021 at 21:54
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    Ahh, Eddings. I have read his "Elenium" trilogy. Somehow he managed to pull off an absolutely mesmerising story with annoyingly unrealistic characters. :D
    – Vilx-
    Apr 16, 2021 at 8:22

Not applicable, but found it ironic the descriptive details also well describe Eragon by Christopher Paolini, even down to the details of the magic system. Of course, Eragon was published quite a bit later.

  • 6
    Hi, welcome to SF&F. As you say Eragon was much later, but you could still post this as a proper answer - explaining all the details that match - in case someone searching finds this question but The Belgariad isn't the right answer for them.
    – DavidW
    Apr 16, 2021 at 22:03
  • A lot of people feel that Eragon blatantly copied a lot from The Belgariad, even down to entire conversations (as well as several specific details in the magic system) - relatively easy to find the various arguments about it online, will link to one on reddit that covers some of the bigger points - reddit.com/r/Eragon/comments/a9fbj6/…
    – Rycochet
    Apr 17, 2021 at 19:20

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