This is book three in the Septimus Heap series. Here you can read about book two.
Septimus is now interested in Physik (a form of alchemy). Marcia (his wizard teacher that he is apprentice to) doesn’t agree with this study because she says it a waste of time and doesn’t accomplish anything. She believes that magyk is the only study worthwhile, so she forbids Septimus from studying Physik.
Queen Etheldredda is an evil spirit who pushed Septimus into the moat and he would have died if she hadn’t saved him. Because she saved him, she has a power over him called a ‘retrieve’ which means she can control him completely otherwise he will die. This power only lasts for 24 hours, so she uses it to send him into the looking glass so she can take over the castle without him interfering.
While in the looking glass, Septimus goes back 500 years in time and is found by the alchemist Marcellus Pye and he decides to study under him.
I am really enjoying this series. As I write this, I am already half way through the next book “Queste”. These books are easy to get into and very difficult to put down. This author creates a world that is very exciting and fun, and I love to visit as much as possible.