Scent of Magic Author:Andre Norton An orphaned child and captive scullery maid, young Willadene possesses an uncanny ability to sense and understand the magical odors that pervade her world. It is this remarkable talent--or curse--that carries her far from the fetid kitchen into an apprenticeship with a revered herbalist and untimately to the highest circles of the Ducal court. B... more »ut there is depravity lurking within the castle's walls, inspiring brazen treacheries and usurpations--and foul abduction as unthinkable as it is unexpected. Something horribly strange and forbidden struck at the dawn of a new day of corruption and terror. And an innocent girl finds the heightened sense that has been her fortune is now drawing her down into a maelstrom of evil.« less
This is a most enjoyable read. Meet Halwice, herbwoman extraordinare; Wiladene, her assistant who has a nose for determining good, evil and different people as well as all other odors; Mahart, sheltered princess who has so much to learn about the world; The Bat, spy for the king; and so many other intriguing characters. This is a classic tale of good versus evil with kingdoms at risk and a bit of romance thrown in between Wiladene and The Bat and the princess and a warrior prince who has no time for simpering women. I quite liked it.