Book with magic used like software

Rick Ma

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I read a series of books (two I think) a few years back and stupidly loaned them out and never got them back. Now I cant' remember the title or author. The plot goes something like this:

A man wakes up one day and the earth has changed - the laws of physics no longer work and instead magic has taken over. The interesting thing about the book was how the author dealt with magic like software where simpler spells could be "packaged" into more advanced spells. As I recall there was a unicorn in the book and the man had a son who was a major character.
Can anyone tell me who the author may have been?
Thanks,
Rick
 

PaulMmn

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What time period? The stories about Lord D'Arcy (Magician) and his partner-in-solving-crime, Good Ol' What's His Name, solve crimes. Lord Darcy is a detective in an alternate history, created by Randall Garrett. The first stories were asserted to take place in the same year as they were published, but in a world with an alternate history that is different from our own and that is governed by the rules of magic rather than the rules of physics. Wikipedia

He doesn't have a son, and I don't remember a unicorn.
 

psychotick

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Hi,

Can't think of the name of the book or author (Simak, Anthony or someone like that), or even if it was a full novel, but there was a story set in a world where aliens had attacked Earth with a biological weapon designed to attack the brain, and instead of wiping out people it awakened humanity's natural magical / psychical ability which had been locked away from them millennia before. There's a line in it that the attack actually killed no one, but the side effects wiped out eighty percent of the human population. The side effects being that people could suddenly do anything with just a thought, and they ended up killing each other. The hero learns to use his magic through wishing to have to use a control word before any of his wishes come into effect so he doesn't actually wish something dangerous. And he's helped by friendly aliens when he makes a wish for the children of the world to be protected.

Does this sound like the book you're thinking of?

Cheers, Greg.
 

sueelleker

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Hi,

Can't think of the name of the book or author (Simak, Anthony or someone like that), or even if it was a full novel, but there was a story set in a world where aliens had attacked Earth with a biological weapon designed to attack the brain, and instead of wiping out people it awakened humanity's natural magical / psychical ability which had been locked away from them millennia before. There's a line in it that the attack actually killed no one, but the side effects wiped out eighty percent of the human population. The side effects being that people could suddenly do anything with just a thought, and they ended up killing each other. The hero learns to use his magic through wishing to have to use a control word before any of his wishes come into effect so he doesn't actually wish something dangerous. And he's helped by friendly aliens when he makes a wish for the children of the world to be protected.

Does this sound like the book you're thinking of?

Cheers, Greg.
psychotick; the one you're thinking of is "Blindfold From The Stars" by Philip E. High. I love his books.
 

tobl

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there's always s m stirling CHANGE series, but i don't remember a unicorn
 

tachyon

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This is probably the Change series, but the Steven R Boyett one, not the one by Stirling.

2-book series, magic replaces science, prominent unicorn, father/son dynamic (in 2nd book). I don't recall magic working like software but my recollection of the magic system in the series is fuzzy.

Ariel (1983)
Elegy Beach (2009)
 

Happy Joe

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Not sure if its what you want (probably not ) but Rick Cook wrote roughly 5 books about a programmer (Wiz Zummalt) who was brought from earth and figured out how to write a magic compiler to program magic, I don't remember any Unicorns though.


  1. Wizard's Bane (1989), ISBN 0-671-69803-6
  2. The Wizardry Compiled (1989), ISBN 0-671-69856-7
  3. The Wizardry Cursed (1991), ISBN 0-671-72049-X
  4. The Wizardry Consulted (1995), ISBN 0-671-87700-3
  5. The Wizardry Quested (1996), ISBN 0-671-87708-9
Enjoy!
 
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Ariel by Steven R. Boyett?
There is a unicorn accompanying the protagonist, but I don't recall much about the method of magic. Amazon has a good synopsis.
 

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