Monday, May 9, 2016

Shadows of the Dark Crystal #1 by J. M. Lee, Brian Froud (Illustrated by)


This is a new fantasy series for young adults.  It's based on Jim Henson's Dark Crystal series and is set in the years before you enter his fantasy world.  I was not familiar with this series so I tried this one.  I'm glad I did.

Grosset & Dunlap and Edelweiss allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 28th.

I recognized Mr. Froud's illustrations.  Nobody can take a drawing and make it breathe evil like he can.  His illustrations bring the monsters in this story to life.

It's about a young Gelfling girl who longed for adventure like her twin brother got but understands her charge is to become the next woman leader in her village.  Her mother is training her.  She learns from her father, too.  When another person from another village far away comes to visit, she tries to welcome her and make her comfortable.  That doesn't last long because her mother knows the woman has something she wants from them and they confront her together that evening.  She says their son has been accused of treason and has run away.  She needs a family member to return with her so he might come out of hiding and can tried as a traitor.  Naia is his twin and she knows he's no traitor.  She says she'll go and her father says he'll come with her.

The journey is hard and her father gets injured before they've gone far.  Something has set the creatures off.  They aren't acting normally.  Naia lets the other woman help her father back to camp and she continues on her journey.  It's a journey of discovery, learning about the world and the various people and creatures that live there.  It's also a journey into danger.

The Skeksis Lords not only look evil, they are evil.  What Naia finds is terror and hopelessness but she's not willing to give up.  She's still fighting at the end of the book.  Luckily she's found a companion on the way, but the cost of the quest is already high.  I wonder where she will go in the next book in the series...

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