Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Book Review: The Book of Dead Days by Marcus Sedgwick

 I was slightly disappointed by this book as it  was totally not what I was expecting from the summary on the back of the book. But then I was distatched by the cover (it had a bookmark ribbon in it) and the whole Dead Days thing.

The days between Christmas and New Year’s Eve are dead days, when spirits roam and magic shifts restlessly just beneath the surface of our lives. A lot can happen in the dead days.

Accompanied by his servant, Boy, (who has no name and no past) Valerian, the magician, must save his own life, or pay the price for the pact he made with evil so many years ago. But will his sorcery be any match against the demonic power pursuing him?

Set in dark, dangerous cities and in the frozen countryside of a distant time and place, 'The Book of Dead Days' conjures a spell-binding story of power, corruption and desperate magic.

I was really intrigued by thinking of the days between Christmas and New Year's Eve as being dead. As these days you do kinda muddle through those days. The thing is that these days actually pays no real part in the plot of novel. It claims it does by separating the days over the week that past during the work. It could really be any week during winter. I was expecting something to do with ghosts invading someone during these Dead Days. There is some magic like aspects in the book, still just I think that first part of the summary was very misleading, as there is no "Spirits".

The actual plot of the book was quiet good. I liked Boy and his relation with Valerian was interesting. Couldn't care less for the love interest though.There was some character stupidity, but that's to be expected with lives in the balance.

The setting was interesting. It this historical, timeless sort of city, that seen better days. The tunnels under the city were cool. Also who doesn't love a book that includes a visit to Graveyard in the middle of the night. Two visits actually.

Its also has an acceptable cliff-hanger. It has a proper ending but does tense you enough to want you to read the next book to find out all the answer. I'm not in hurry to get my hands on the sequel, however I will get it eventually.

Overall, I gave this book 4/5. While structurally good, there was just something lacking when it came to connecting to the characters, the value of the mystery mainly over comes that.

P.S. I'm not sure if that's a good review or not. I should probably start annoying some trust worthy people.

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