The Dark City
Welcome to Anara, a world mysteriously crumbling to devastation, where nothing is what it seems: Ancient relics emit technologically advanced powers, members of the old Order are hunted by the governing Watch yet revered by the people, and the great energy that connects all seems to also be destroying all. The only hope for the world lies in Galen, a man of the old Order and a Keeper of relics, and his sixteen-year-old apprentice, Raffi. They know of a secret relic with great power that has been hidden for centuries. As they search for it, they will be tested beyond their limits. For there are monsters-some human, some not-that also want the relic's power and will stop at nothing to get it.
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- Hardback | 376 pages
- 140 x 211 x 36mm | 567g
- 17 May 2011
- Penguin Putnam Inc
- Dial Books for Young Readers,US
- New York, NY, United States
- Illustrations, black and white
About Catherine Fisher
Catherine Fisher is an acclaimed novelist and poet, and has written many fantasy books for young people, including the popular "Oracle Betrayed" series. She lives in Wales.
Our customer reviews
Relic Master Galen Harn and his apprentice, Raffi, know that all is not well the moment they set foot in the settlement that had boldly requested their help a few days before. Drawn by curiosity and the possibility of discovering a relic, the pair nevertheless decides to venture into the castle-like fortress that is the settlement's stronghold and soon come to regret the decision. After an unpleasant meeting with the leader, Alberic, Galen and Raffi are off once again - this time in search of a thieving Sekoi who had ravaged the settlement, and the Crow, who, if found, would prove to be very helpful to Galen indeed. Carys, an orphaned girl in search of her father, soon joins the group on their journey to the dark city of Tasceron, where both the Sekoi and the Crow are rumored to be found. However, the Watch is always present at every turn; their deception knows no bounds. Having read and tremendously enjoyed Ms. Fisher's INCARCERON duology, I was, to say the last, excited to get my hands on the RELIC MASTER series. While INCARCERON seems to be geared more towards young adults, THE DARK CITY reads more like a middle grade novel to me, albeit an intense and still relatively interesting one. The world-building present in THE DARK CITY is subtle and yet comprehensive. The use of magic by Galen and Raffi, while not extensively clarified, was explained enough to be understandable and not overwhelming. The cast of characters were quite darling, also, with their own little quirks and secrets. Even though the plot tended to drag noticeably in the beginning and middle parts of the novel, I think the ending was a success overall. Book one of the RELIC MASTER series will appeal to middle grade fantasy lovers and readers who are willing to plunge into the fantastical world of the magic-wielding Order and the seemingly omniscient Watch.show moreby TeensReadToo
Galen Harn is a Keeper, otherwise known as a Relic Master. He is part of the Order that is tasked with keeping the relics of the Makers safe. Raffael Morel (Raffi) is his scholar, an apprentice of sorts, who left his family to train with Galen as a future Keeper. The biggest problem? The Order of the Keepers has been outlawed, with a reward of 2000 marks for anyone who captures a Keeper. Most of the people in the villages live in poverty, but secretly still practice the faith, but there's always a chance that someone will turn them in, so they live in hiding in the woods near a cromlech. Cromlech's are stone formations said to have been built by the Sekoi, the first race. Because of their reputed powers, many people stay away from these formations. When a horseman seeks them out and tells them that his settlement has found a Relic, Galen, who has been hurt in an explosion of the last Relic, decides to journey to the settlement. After some trickery (which I really won't get into; seems too much of a spoiler), the two find themselves heading for the destroyed city of the Makers, Tasceron. Along their journey, they are followed and eventually joined by Carys Arrin, a young girl who, unknown to them, is a member of the Watch. The Watch is the group that has outlawed the Order of the Keepers and are the cause of the destruction of Tasceron. They also go into villages and take the brightest young children from their parents to raise them in the Watch, teaching them that the powers of the Order are an illusion. The watch children are also taught that they are orphans. Carys has tasked herself with capturing the Keeper, but chooses to wait until he journeys into Tasceron, where he wants to find the "owl" that is a messenger between their people and the Makers. If she can both capture Galen and bring in one of the most powerful Relics, she is certain to rise in the ranks of the Watch. What can I say? This book is classified as YA/Fantasy, and it obviously has some fantasy and sci-fi elements, but it is a great story, full of twists and turns, with a bridge that takes you back to where you started, firestorms, secret Orders, and magic. There are some books that you open and want to read right through, and this is one of them. It's not predictable (although early on I started to have an idea of who the Makers actually were), and Galen knows a lot more than we give him credit for. Parents: this is a book that you can feel good about letting your middle reader read - there is no sex, violence, or even profanity. This is the first in a series of four, scheduled to come out on a monthly basis through August, 2011. The next one comes out in June, and I want it. Right now. I can't wait to see what happens with Carys and how her doubts play out and who the Makers actually are, and what new powers Galen may or may not have, and how Raffi matures, and what happens with the Sekoi that helped them out. QUOTES (from an ARC; may be different in finished copy): Alberic nodded. "But the Order is finished," he said sweetly. "Broken, outlawed. Dead." "The power remains." It's quite clear the Watch have lied to us, and that makes me angry. The Order do have powers and they're real. It makes me wonder how much else I don't know. The Watch wants all relics - to destroy them, according to our teachers - and yet, I wonder. What if someone high up wants this power for themself? Writing: 4 out of 5 stars Plot: 5 out of 5 stars Characters: 4 out of 5 stars Reading Immersion: 5 out 5 stars BOOK RATING: 4.5 out of 5 starsshow moreby Julie Smith