Things I'm pretty sure I remember correctly:

  • I've read it in 1992-1993, in a mass market paperback edition. I don't remember anything from the cover.

  • It was the first of a series.

  • Synopsis of what I remember from the story.

The hero is an orphan, raised by a wizard. The book opens when the wizard's house is under attack by one of his old enemy whose goal is to get hold of the boy. The attack could have been made possible by the boy or the wizard's negligence. The attack is mostly magical in nature, but the enemy manifest itself as a storm or a strong wind. There is some kind of conversation between the enemy and the wizard. The wizard succeed in saving the boy, but the house is destroyed and the wizard dies after disclosing to the boy his ancestry.

The boy leaves the place were they lived (which was isolated on a road not in much use) and goes to a castle. He gets tentatively accepted there.


The boy goes on a mission with a group of soldiers. They are camping in the ruins of a small old castle when they get attacked. The boy save them -- more because of who he is than what he does. One or two (ghost?) women and ghosts of soldiers having died when defending the castle play a role, IIRC, the women as friend, the ghost soldiers as foes. (ISTR a personal relationship between the boy and the ghost, but fear the influence of the LOTR I read about the same time.) That episode increased the confidence they had he was what he claimed, but he was still not fully accepted.

Things I may get wrong but associate with the book:

  • the word "chronicle" (I've spend an inordinate amount of time using this to search in various places without finding anything, its probably not part of the title)

  • the author was English

  • the author simulated various accent by playing on spelling

  • What makes you think the author was English? Are you sure he / she is? That could help us track down the book.
    – Daft
    Commented Feb 11, 2015 at 12:06
  • It sounds a lot like the Dresden Files but I know that's not it. Close but no cigar.
    – ShadoCat
    Commented Nov 10, 2017 at 22:44
  • 1
    A longshot, but possibly a mixture of elements from The Chronicles of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander (1964-1968). Check out the wiki here: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Chronicles_of_Prydain. There are individual wikis for each book in the series. It may not be the right book, but if not, you may enjoy this series as well. Commented Aug 16, 2019 at 14:03

3 Answers 3


I am almost positive that you are looking for C.J. Cherryh's Fortress in the Eye of Time. The boy's name is Tristen. It was published in 1995, but the other details fit.

The stories center on Tristen, a boy not born from a human mother, but rather a magical "shaping" created by the ancient wizard Mauryl Gestaurien. Called "Kingmaker" for his role in the founding of the ruling Marhannen dynasty, Mauryl is the last living representative of the great Galasieni race. His once formidable power, however, is declining with age. And Mauryl, doubting his own abilities, falters during the act of Tristen's creation, leaving the shaping work partially unfinished.

Tristen is thereby brought into the world not fully formed. Physically he conforms to the shape and abilities of a normal human boy, but he has no memory, knowledge of the world around him, or understanding of his personal identity. Mauryl deliberately leaves the question of Tristen's identity unanswered, and as such Tristen must discover it for himself. But Tristen is being stalked by an evil ghost-like sorcerer, Hasufin Heltain, an old enemy of Mauryl who seeks to destroy Tristen and return to living corporeal form.

  • Here ya go; this should help verify: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fortress_in_the_Eye_of_Time
    – K-H-W
    Commented Oct 4, 2011 at 18:02
  • @Gilles, thank you for adding the links. I was on my phone at the time and having trouble switching web pages to double-check the series title and author! Commented Oct 8, 2011 at 14:58
  • @KeithHWeston, thank you for linking to the wikipedia page. Commented Oct 8, 2011 at 14:58

Parts of the description match the beginning of Magician by Raymond E. Feist, but unfortunately, not all. Still throwing this out here because you might have two books mixed up?

  • This was my first thought too, but this line threw me off: The attack is mostly magical in nature, but the enemy manifest itself as a storm or a strong wind. Could be elements of another story like you say.
    – Daft
    Commented Feb 11, 2015 at 12:04

Wow... The closest I can come matches the beginning, but past that, not so much... There was a comic drawn by Aaron Williams, for Dragon magazine, Floyd. The beginning is a lot like you describe... if rather sarcastic and smart-alecy. It does improve, but ended before resolving the plot (Williams replaced it with Nodwick "due to the problems of running a serialized comic and keeping new readers from having to go hunting for back issues in order to figure out what's going on").

Here's where it starts. (Internet archive link)

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