Review Detail

Young Adult Fiction 2077
A Fitting End to a Seminal Trilogy
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Zoë Marriott

Abhorsen is a triumph for Garth Nix, and final proof that the law of decreasing sequels does not apply to this man.

In this brilliant novel, Lirael, Sam, Moggett and the Disreputable Dog (I love that name!) are on a quest to escape from the massing forces of the Dead and to discover the name of the ultimate evil that is orchestrating events and how to defeat it.

Using her skills as remembrancer and Abhorsen-in-training, Lirael must travel into Death to find the answers in the past, and it's Prince Sameth's job not only to keep her alive but also to enlist as much help as possible in their quest. But the clock is ticking faster than even they know...

I really love this book. It has everything that makes a novel great, and all the elements that make a good fantasy too. The characters are beautifully drawn, from unpredictable Mogget to noble Sabriel and in particular matter-of-fact, romantic, brave Lirael. The pace is cracking, leaving the reader almost breathless and certainly unable to put the book down. The magical systems - the formation of Death, the spells, the use of the bells and the remembrancer's tools - are unique, well thought-out and terribly well realised. And best of all, every theme and story arch comes together here in a climax that is one of the best I've ever come across. There's even a hint of romance...

Nix has come a long way since he wrote Sabriel ten years ago. This book showcases his talents at their very peak, and as such should be an essential on every fantasy fan's shelf.
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