Wednesday 19 May 2010

The Keeper's Daughter - Gill Arbuthnott

The Keeper’s Daughter - Gill Arbuthnott

Pages: 425
Publisher: Chicken House
Release Date: 6th July 2009

Other Titles by this Author: The Chaos Clock, The Chaos Quest, Winterbringers, Crazy Creatures, Mad Scientists, Germ Wars

Orphaned as a baby, Nyssa can only dream about who she is and where she comes from, but with the arrival of dark strangers, her past is revealed.

Nyssa has a hidden tattoo that bears one half of a secret message. Now her future depends on finding the other half, written on a twin she’s never know, and the truth of the words that mark them.

The Keeper’s Daughter is a brilliant fantasy full of secrets, intrigue and murder.

What I loved most about this novel is the legend of the Keepers. The story of a supposedly dangerous, secret society that has been pushed into myth but has maintained suspicions for years has a classical feel; Ancient Greek, I’d say. And I love classical history. The magic, the myths, the stories! Our world is so boring compared to them.

The old-world atmosphere I supported by the extraordinary library in Rushiadh. It reminds me a lot of the Library of Alexandria with it’s underground vaults filled with ancient scrolls and it’s priestesses guarding centuries old secrets. As creepy as Gill Arbuthnott made it sound, I’d really like to have a look around. Oh, and men aren’t allowed in without express permission. That really made me laugh.

As with lots of fantasy novels, The Keeper’s Daughter centres around a quest. While I’m reading I often wish my life as exciting enough to warrant one, but to be honest, weeks without hot showers, a flushing toilet, central heating and a readily available Tesco’s, I think I’d really rather stay at home. I know, I’d never make it as heroine of a fantasy novel, going on a treacherous journey like Nyssa to rescue sweet, damaged Kit.

A neat, tied-up ending with good triumphing evil and a happy ever after for Nyssa, Kit, Aria and Marius. It’s so refreshing not to end a book on a frustrating cliffhanger where you have to wait a year to end on another cliffhanger. This has recently become a huge pet peeve for me so I’m very grateful Gill Arbuthnott decided against it.

I really enjoyed The Keeper’s Daughter and I’m hoping for a novel about the priestesses of Rushiadh from Gill next!

For my 2010 100+ Reading Challenge



  1. Great Review, that sounds like just the sort of book that I would love. I'll definitely have to keep an eye out for it. :)

  2. I have a question, which might be a little odd, but what do you think is the word count of a 425 paged book?

  3. I loved reading this review - still laughing at your analysis of the truth of going on a quest!

    And in response to Kate Evangelista, if it's OK with Sophie... My books tend to be around 350 pages and they're between 70,000 and 80,000 words. It depends on so much, though - font size, paper size, whether new chapters start on new pages, and so much more.
    I'd guess a 425-page book would be somewhere around 100,000 words, though. Hope that helps!

    Thanks for this great review, Sophie!

  4. It seems like you really enjoyed this one, though I'm not sure it's for me. I like the sound of legend of the keepers :)

    Thanks for the top review!

  5. This one doesn't sound like it's for me, but I am glad that you enjoyed it!

  6. I think this sounds really fascinating. I love visiting worlds that are totally different from our own, and I really like how you've described the world-building in this one. I appreciate the lack of a major cliffhanger these days too.

  7. WOW !
    This Sounds is very Fascinating.
    I look forward to reading more on the topic in the future.


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