by Philippa Gregory
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: Jan 1, 2012 (paperback)
Source: sent by publicist
My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Summary from goodreads.com:
Dark myths, medieval secrets, intrigue, and romance populate the pages of this first in a four-book teen series from the #1 bestselling author of The Other Boleyn Girl.The year is 1453 and all signs point to it being the end of the world. Accused of heresy and expelled from his monastery, handsome seventeen-year-old Luca Vero is recruited by a mysterious stranger to record the end of times across Europe. Commanded by sealed orders, Luca is sent to map the fears of Christendom and travel to the very frontier of good and evil.
Seventeen-year-old Isolde, a Lady Abbess, is trapped in a nunnery to prevent her from claiming her rich inheritance. As the nuns in her care are driven mad by strange visions, walking in their sleep, and showing bleeding wounds, Luca is sent to investigate and driven to accuse her.
Forced to face the greatest fears of the dark ages—witchcraft, werewolves, madness—Luca and Isolde embark on a search for truth, their own destinies, and even love as they take the unknown ways to the real historical figure who defends the boundaries of Christendom and holds the secrets of the Order of Darkness.
This was a very unique book, and I enjoyed it a lot! I was pleasantly surprised by just how different of a story it was.
The characters were great and I can't wait to see them develop even more in the next books. My favorite character was Freize, Luca's servant. He was so funny, and had a heart of gold. I can only hope that he and Ishraq will patch things up in the upcoming books. Ishraq, Isolde's servant, was a very interesting character, too. She was wise and strong, in a quiet way. I liked Isolde, too, she was strong in her own right, especially considering everything that had happened to her to put her in her present circumstances. Luca has some growing to do, but his heart is in the right place. He's a bit over-confident, but it works for him, and he has good values.
I have to say that I enjoyed the second part of the book more than the first. The characters were definitely on two clearly separate adventures. The second adventure had a little bit more heart in my opinion. Also, I think I was more aware of where the characters stood in their points of view and values, instead of guessing. I love the format of the four characters heading off on different adventures in every book. I can't wait for the upcoming books in the series.
Main Characters: 4/5
Supporting Characters: 5/5
Bottom Line: A wonderful and unique take on YA, I can't wait to read the future installments of this new series.
You may be more familiar with the cover for the hardcover version of this book. I would say that, while I might have been more likely to pick up the first cover, I really think this new cover suits the story better.
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Philippa Gregory is the author of several internationally bestselling novels, including The Other Boleyn Girl and The White Queen, and is a recognized authority on women’s history. She lives in the north of England with her family and welcomes visitors to her website, PhilippaGregory.com. Order of Darkness: Changeling is her first novel written for teens.
Find out more: http://www.philippagregory.com
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