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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Skin Hunger, by Kathleen Duey

Sadima lives in a world where magic has been banned, leaving poor villagers
prey to fakes and charlatans. A "magician" stole her family's few valuables and
left Sadima's mother to die on the day Sadima was born. But vestiges of magic
are hidden in old rhymes and hearth tales and in people like Sadima, who
conceals her silent communication with animals for fear of rejection and
ridicule. When rumors of her gift reach Somiss, a young nobleman obsessed with
restoring magic, he sends Franklin, his lifelong servant, to find her. Sadima's
joy at sharing her secret becomes love for the man she shares it with. But
Franklin's irrevocable bond to the brilliant and dangerous Somiss traps her,
too, and she faces a heartbreaking decision.

Centuries later magic has been restored, but it is available only to the
wealthy and is strictly controlled by wizards within a sequestered academy of
magic. Hahp, the expendable second son of a rich merchant, is forced into the
academy and finds himself paired with Gerrard, a peasant boy inexplicably
admitted with nine sons of privilege and wealth. Only one of the ten students
will graduate -- and the first academic requirement is survival.

Sadima's and Hahp's worlds are separated by generations, but their lives are
connected in surprising and powerful ways in this brilliant first book of
Kathleen Duey's dark, complex, and completely compelling trilogy.

I get caught up in stories like this. I love the magic, the struggle with good and evil, and how the darker side seems to be carrying the book. I spent a good portion of the book wondering how the two story lines were connected, and making the jumps between the two. It all ties together VERY well, however, it doesn’t stand alone in my mind (it’s the first of a trilogy). The storyline doesn’t progress far enough for me to feel like I’ve gotten into the story (it felt like I was still in the background part of it).

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This work is licensed by Jennifer Turney under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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