Context[ edit ] Two years on from where Obernewtyn ended, Obernewtyn is thriving as a secret community for Misfits. Rushton is now the legal owner of the site, spreading the rumour Obernewtyn had been destroyed in a firestorm deadly storm of flames. The community is separated into six guilds: Healing, Futuretelling those who can see the future , Coercing those who can force others to think or act differently , Beasting those who can communicate with animals , Farseeking those with the ability to send out a mental probe and Teknoguild study of the time before the Great White, particularly machines. Elspeth is guildmistress of the Farseekers. The front doors which contained the map of the weaponmachines have been destroyed.

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Shelves: fantasy , ya , apocalyptic-or-post-apocalyptic , re-read , , australian-women-writers , misfits This review contains some spoilers of the first book. It has been two years since the climactic events of the first book, Obernewtyn , occurred. Elspeth is about seventeen years old and still recovering from the burns to her feet and legs, not helped by the aching cold of the mountains in winter - the same mountains and weather that keep Obernewtyn, now a safe refuge for misfits with unique powers, safe.

Under the new master of Obernewtyn, Rushton Seraphim, the Misfits - as the ruling Council This review contains some spoilers of the first book. Under the new master of Obernewtyn, Rushton Seraphim, the Misfits - as the ruling Council has named them, and would Burn them if caught - have organised themselves into guilds, based on their different powers.

Farseeking, Coercing, Empathy, Beast-speaking, Healing and the Teknoguild are some of the groups, and Elspeth, being the strongest Farseeker, is guildmistress. Few know she can also Coerce and Beast-speak, and has some minimal Futuretelling abilities, premonitions that rise unbidden.

With Rushton back from a trip to the Lowlands with news, a hasty Guildmerge meeting of Guild leaders is called. Rushton wants to establish a permanent contact, or spy, in the capital of Sutrium and has chosen Domick, a Coercer, for the task. Elspeth proposes a joint expedition: the Teknoguild want to find a hidden library in a ruined city near Aborium, on the south-west coast, and the Farseekers have discovered a strong Misfit talent in the same location that they want to rescue and bring back to Obernewtyn.

At the last minute, a recently rescued Herder novice called Jik and his dog, Darga, are added to the group because the Futuretell guildmistress Maryon has Seen that Jik is instrumental to the success of their mission, though she cannot See why, and that they must make it back to Obernewtyn before the next winter or their safe haven will be gone forever.

With such responsibility resting on their shoulders, the group sets forth with the leader of the equines, Galtha, and a few other horses to lead the caravans. This is just the start of their troubles and new discoveries, in a story brimming full of adventure, suspense, delight, and excitement, as the unique world Carmody has crafted comes alive with every step of the journey. Like the first book, I had read this several times in the past, but not for many years now.

I was thrilled at how much it felt both like reading a new and exciting book, and like being reunited with a beloved old friend after many years apart. There was lots I had forgotten, and yet as I read it all came back to me, but only up to the line I had read, so the overall story was still hazy in my mind. I could remember bits, scenes mostly, but few details. Narrated by Elspeth, we only learn about this world as she does, though with our knowledge of our own time there are some things we can deduce or figure out ahead of her.

The past has been banned by the Council and denounced as evil by the Herder Faction, so the people are largely ignorant and easily spooked by anything from the past. Elspeth is cautious and not at all keen to unearth the past: she alone knows that the machines that caused the Great White are still here, slumbering in their hiding place, ready and able to unleash yet another apocalypse. And it is her mission, her lonely quest, to find them and destroy them before this can happen.

Small spoiler I had forgotten about Ariel. He escaped at the end and was believed to have died in the winter storm, but they never sent out a search party to confirm this.

But, such is the strength of his character. It was never said that he had any mutant gift, or why he was sent to Obernewtyn as a Misfit in the first place. Elspeth never tried to read his mind, but she also never wonders and that is a bit strange to me. I agreed to try to organize a meeting between him and Rushton, but I was not sure our aims coincided. Can you say for certain all your people would think as you do? Not be disgusted by us, or frightened? Maybe the thought of someone who could talk inside your head, or make animals do anything they want As a young reader, I always felt close to Elspeth, and a bit sorry for her too.

She never complains, she strong and stoic and comes across as patient and considerate, but every now and then one of her companions will make some comment about not being able to really get to know her, and you realise how much apart she keeps herself. Some peace. I love Dragon, her ability is awesome and how they found her is pretty cool.

Uncovering the buried library, very cool. Rescuing her friends from the Herders, very exciting. Discovering Lidgebaby, a bit scary and with mind-boggling implications. Their situation is so precarious, their fate so terrifying if caught, the stakes so high on everything they do, that you forget for a while that these are just children and teenagers, for the most part being the easiest to come to terms with their mutant abilities; adults tend to have closed minds and fight their knowledge, seek only to pretend to be normal.

When I read these books, I live inside the pages, in this world. Like a ghost or spirit that follows Elspeth, untouched physically but present nevertheless. Oh, except for the final book to come out!


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