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Sixteen-year-old Neryn is alone in the land of Alban, where the oppressive king has ordered anyone with magical strengths captured and brought before him. Eager to hide her own canny skill--a uniquely powerful ability to communicate with the fairy-like Good Folk--Neryn sets out for the legendary Shadowfell, a home and training ground for a secret rebel group determined to overthrow the evil King Keldec.
During her dangerous journey, she receives aid from the Good Folk, who tell her she must pass a series of tests in order to recognize her full potential. She also finds help from a handsome young man, Flint, who rescues her from certain death--but whose motives in doing so remain unclear. Neryn struggles to trust her only allies. They both hint that she alone may be the key to Alban's release from Keldec's rule. Homeless, unsure of who to trust, and trapped in an empire determined to crush her, Neryn must make it to Shadowfell not only to save herself, but to save Alban.
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About the Author

JULIET MARILLIER is the author of several highly popular fantasy novels for adults, including the Sevenwaters Trilogy and the Bridei Chronicles. She is also the author of the teen novels Wildwood Dancing and Cybele's Secret.

Reviews

Kirkus Reviews Best of Teen's Books 2012 Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, August 6, 2012: "For those that wish that Tolkien had explored the character of Aragorn more deeply, Marillier provides the next best thing." From the Hardcover edition. Kirkus Reviews Best of Teen's Books 2012 Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, August 6, 2012: -For those that wish that Tolkien had explored the character of Aragorn more deeply, Marillier provides the next best thing.- From the Hardcover edition. Kirkus Reviews Best of Teen's Books 2012 Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, August 6, 2012: For those that wish that Tolkien had explored the character of Aragorn more deeply, Marillier provides the next best thing. "From the Hardcover edition."" Kirkus Reviews Best of Teen's Books 2012Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, August 6, 2012: "For those that wish that Tolkien had explored the character of Aragorn more deeply, Marillier provides the next best thing.""From the Hardcover edition." Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, August 6, 2012: "For those that wish that Tolkien had explored the character of Aragorn more deeply, Marillier provides the next best thing."

Gr 8 Up-An engaging read for fans of traditional fantasy. Neryn's father, her only surviving relative, has just wagered her in a game of chance-and lost. For years they have been on the run, living cold and hungry at the margins of society in an attempt to hide Neryn's dangerous secret: she has the magical ability to see and sense the Fey creatures that populate Alban. But all magic has been outlawed in the realm except that which is practiced by the king's men. Now Neryn finds herself with Flint, the winner of the wager. He seems to be a potential ally, and she is tempted to confide in him as she embarks on her quest to join a resistance movement. But he is obviously withholding information, and besides, all confidences are dangerous in a world in which the king's men conduct violent raids on all who are rumored to resist the regime. Both characters face serious and interesting moral dilemmas, and the romance between them feels less rushed than in some fantasy romances. Fans of Kristin Cashore and Tamora Pierce will find much to enjoy in this first installment of a planned trilogy.-Hayden Bass, Seattle Public Library, WA (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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