Monday, 17 March 2008

A quote and Close Kin - Clare B. Dunkle

For him that stealeth, or borroweth and returneth not, this book from its owner, let it change into a serpent in his hand and rend him. Let him be struck with palsy, and all his members blasted. Let him languish in pain, crying aloud for mercy, and let there be no surcease to this agony till he sing in dissolution. Let bookworms gnaw his entrails... and when at last he goeth to his final punishment, let the flames of Hell consume him forever.

--Anonymous 'curse' on book thieves from the monastry of San Pedro, Barcelona.

I don't know about you, but I know 'exactly' what the monks are driving at. LOL! Quote found in A Passion for Books edited by Harold Rabinowitz and Rob Kaplan which, for those who love books about books, is an absolute gem.


Okay then, well Close Kin is the second book in The Hollow Kingdom trilogy, the first book of which I blogged about here. I liked it so much I ordered the last two straight away from Amazon.

Briefly, the story picks up a few years after the end of The Hollow Kingdom. The Goblin King, Marak, and Kate are married and have a son. (Sorry, that's a bit spoilerish but I can't see how I can avoid it.) Kate's sister, Em, is happily ensconced in the Goblin Kingdom, not thinking of marriage at all, when Marak's protegé, shape-shifter, Seylin, proposes. Not taking him seriously Em declines and Seylin, devastated, decides to go off into the outside world on a mission. His real self is very beautiful and elf-like in appearance and he decides to look for remnants of the long extinct elf tribes. Too late, realising her mistake, Em takes off after him with a cranky female goblin teacher and a part human urchin boy she picked up in the last book. She has some lessons to learn but then so does Seylin when his mission eventually come to fruition.

A few reviews I've seen describe this as the weakest of the three books. Not having read the third yet I can't judge, I do know though that I enjoyed this one every bit as much as the first. So there you go. I liked its humour, its pacey plot, the characters are all very real with weaknesses as well as strengths and I liked the satisfying ending. I have no complaints whatsoever. Excellent. :-)


When we are collecting books, we are collecting happiness -- Vincent Starrett

I couldn't agree more. I'm currently reading Anne of Green Gables and am very happy indeed. :-)


monix said...

I love that quotation from the monks, Cath. I'd love to have it emblazoned inside my front door!

Jeane said...

Love that Starrett quote. Never happier than when I am reading a book, especially when it is free from toddler interruptions every five minutes! (can you tell I need some peace right now?)

Cath said...

Isn't a brillaint quote, Maureen? How reassuring that in some respects life hasn't changed at all in centuries.

Yes, I can tell that, Jeanne. It's my day for my grandson tomorrow and I'll feel just like you do come the end of the day. ;-)

monix said...

Are you suggesting that being a grandma isn't all awe and wonder? That's not what you said when we were still expecting ours, Cath!

Cath said...

Okay, Maureen, I lied. LOL. What I should have said is, 'It's all awe and wonder until they can either run away from you on their own two feet or answer you back'. The grandson, at 17 months, can do the first very well indeed and is learning to do the second very rapidly indeed. ;-) Not that I would change him, or his cousin, for the world mind... but I am glad I'm their grandma and not their mum.

DesLily said...

ladies, ladies.. hopefully it will come full circle for both of you!.. My grandson is 12, and the last time i visited him (they live in florida) he read me a whole book out loud!.. I can't tell you how enjoyable THAT is!! I will cross my fingers for you both to wind up with grandchildren that read aloud!

as for the book review.. dang you cath! lol ok ok all 3 are on my wish list! lol..

and you never NEVER borrow a book and not give it back... you get dropped from the "friends list" real quick that way! lol