Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Review: Abhorsen

Abhorsen by Garth Nix

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The completion of my "re-read" of this classic series, via e-audio.

Though I prefer books that aren't as dark and have a lower body count, it's so well done that I went with it anyway. Nix's characters are always strongly motivated, always protagonise their backsides off, and, in doing so, overcome obstacle after obstacle while things get progressively worse for them and the tension builds accordingly. I don't know if he's read Jack Bickham's [b:Elements of Fiction Writing - Scene & Structure|19146770|Elements of Fiction Writing - Scene & Structure|Jack Bickham||25288204], but his books are perfect examples of the advice in that book put into action.

In the earlier two books of the (main) trilogy - not counting the recently-published prequel, [b:Clariel|20662728|Clariel (Abhorsen, #4)|Garth Nix||6125574] - there was a certain amount of head-hopping in the middle of the scenes. It's not so evident in this third book, but the point of view is more omniscient than tight third-person. Omniscient is considered rather an old-fashioned POV these days, and the story might have been strengthened slightly by a tighter viewpoint; still, that would have deprived us of a few key moments in the viewpoints of Mogget and the Disreputable Dog.

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