Week 6 is my favourite male author. It was a toughy but I reverted back to my childhood and revelled in the delights of the world of The Old Kingdom in Garth Nix’s amazing books Sabriel, Lirael, Abhorsen and Clariel.
The first in The Old Kingdom series; Sabriel is quite frankly an amazing book and Garth Nix a frankly amazing story weaver. In the Old Kingdom free and charter magic abound and people both fear and need the people behind the walls.
When the House of the Royal family falls there is trouble brewing with necromancers rife among the people raising the living dead and using them to do their bidding. Sabriel’s dad is the Abhorsen a powerful necromancer who armed with bells and a special sword can put the dead to rest. But when her father dies Sabriel finds herself in charge of her father’s bells and the responsibility of Abhorsen falls to her.
Lirael is a book in 3 parts picking up 14 years after the end of Sabriel. The second two parts are set 5 years after the first part. Lirael is the half sister of Sabriel on her father’s side and lives with the Clayr a mystical set of fortune tellers. Due to Lirael not having the sight she doesn’t fit in with the rest of the Clayr, but her loneliness is relieved when she meets the Disreputable Dog in the Clayr’s library and begins to vanquish monsters.
Abhorsen features old favourite Lirael who is now Abhorsen in waiting after Sabriel. Hedge the necromancer is reaking havoc and attacking everyone and everything with his army of undead. Lirael and Sameth her cousin set about to to destroy ‘the destroyer’.
Clariel is book 4 of the series and is set before the events of the other three as serves as a sort of Prequel to The Old Kingdom series. Magic is ‘unfashionable’ and the Abhorsen of the time is next to useless. Riches like gold and silver take precedence over magic. One thing I’ll say is that this book was one massive surprise and it filled in many missing pieces from the first three.
Garth Nix is a magical storyteller, his writing style is second to none, his description, character building and scene setting on a completely different level. I still don’t know why this series has never got the recognition it truly deserves.