Everyone makes mistakes on the road to adulthood. But in the magic-infused archipelago of Earthsea, the wrong mistake has the potential to unleash an ancient and terrible evil upon the world. That’s the lesson that prideful young wizard Ged—also known as Sparrowhawk—must learn while training at the island of Roke’s school of wizardry in the 1968 debut installment of Ursula K. Le Guin’s Earthsea Cycle series. In the coming-of-age classic, Hugo, Nebula, Locus and World Fantasy Award-winning author Le Guin weaves a subversive fantasy tale that has remained timeless for more than 50 years. As Le Guin wrote in the book’s afterword, Ged’s story is not one of war between good and evil, but rather of self-discovery: “The discovery brings him victory, the kind of victory that isn’t the end of a battle but the beginning of a life.” —Megan McCluskey

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