I read a novel in 2003-2004 which is written in English and had multiple story lines in it. One was about a man that became the flag bearer to the king and and falls in love with the king's wife. Another part of the story is about a mage married to the queen that was once one of the most powerful mages in the realm but he shared his words of power with a crowd of people so his power was diminished.

If anyone has read this book or knows the name it would be greatly appreciated.


1 Answer 1


I suspect the book you are thinking of is one of the series A Handful of Men by Dave Duncan.

This series is a sequel to A Man of His Word which follows the adventures of stableboy Rap and princess Inosolan. By the end of that series

Rap has become the most powerful sorcerer in the land by mastering 5 words of magic. He share 4 of the words with Inosolan and she shared those words with a crowd of people - making Rap an almost ordinary man again

A Handful of Men picks up a few years later and adds some new characters. One of those is Ylo - an imperial soldier who falls in love with the wife of his imperor (king).

  • is a dwarf trapped in a magic bubble?
    – hoveroy
    Commented Aug 4, 2015 at 13:35
  • It is a while since I read them so I am not really sure. Having said that there are definitely dwarves in the story and being trapped in a magic bubble sounds familiar Commented Aug 4, 2015 at 15:57
  • Just checked my copy and yes the villain (a dwarf called Zinixo) was trapped in a magic bubble by Rap - "I wrapped him up in an unbreakable soap bubble that stopped magic. He still had his power then, but he couldn't use it." Commented Aug 5, 2015 at 2:04
  • see also scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/14836/… (question about previous series)
    – Otis
    Commented Oct 21, 2015 at 16:09

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