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Saturday, December 26, 2009

Voices in the Dark by Catherine Banner

Voices in the Dark by Catherine Banner 5 of 5 stars.
Voices in the Dark is the 2nd and latest book of The Last Descendants Trilogy.
Asking for the truth can be as painful as telling it...

Anselm Andros has clearly defined roles in his family and they are roles he plays very well - he is confidante to his mother, Maria. He is the confessor to his stepfather, Leo, a man haunted by the secrets of his past. And Anselm is also the patient, caring brother to his precocious sister, Jasmine. When the political landscape of Malonia starts to shift, this unassuming family begins to unravel. Even though they've spent the past fifteen years leading a quiet life, Maria and Leo's actions are forever linked to the turbulent history of Malonia and its parallel world, modern-day England. With so much uncertainty at home and in his world, it is more important than ever for Anselm to put all the pieces of the past together. He must listen to his own voice and acknowledge his fears and desires - whatever the cost.

After reading the first book in this trilogy, Eyes of a King, it took me a while to figure out where this book picks up. This book provides very little review of the previous book and to fully respect and understand it you must read the first. I loved the first book by Catherine Banner and in turn I loved this one. When you read a series that is crafted so carefully with such love and attention and that has such a realistic disposition even despite the unbelievable world you come to love the characters and to feel for them. I found myself crying with them and laughing with them. Catherine Banner's writing is beautiful and consoling but at the same time the story will break your heart. Its filled with such melancholy it hurts. Leo was our narrator in the first book but now, sixteen years later, his step-son takes over the narrative. In the beginning he seems much different from Leo, less miserable, angry, and thoughtful, but toward the end he picks up the same grief and guilt that filled Leo's world. While the little girl, Jasmine, seems to have a bit too large a vocabulary for a six year old she is a wonderful character that adds more texture to the story. I would suggest this trilogy to anyone who loves a good fantasy.

For fans of: Gemma Doyle Trilogy, Inheritance Cycle


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