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The Farseekers by Isobelle Carmody

The Farseekers

Title: The Farseekers
Author: Isobelle Carmody
Series: The Obernewtyn Chronicles #2
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Australian author, Dystopian future, High fantasy, Science fiction
Pace: Medium
Format: Novel
Publisher: Penguin Books
Year: 1990
5th sentence, 74th page: Then he gaped, seeing the robed man.

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I didn’t know that there was a second Obernewtyn book until I stumbled on it a few years after reading the first. I had always felt like Obernewtyn was well finished. So, The Farseekers did feel a little like an after-thought sequel. But, that didn’t detract from its brilliance and value in any way, shape or form. This book built on a world that I had really and thoroughly enjoyed in Obernewtyn, and further immersed and sucked me in to a new, dystopian reality.

Not only did Carmody build on a pre-loved world, she also played with ideas of destiny and fate. I love the idea that there is something in this world that we are meant to do, meant to accomplish. Although, I don’t like the idea that we are not able to affect our own future – who wants to live a life where you are no more able to change your course than a leaf blowing on the wind? But placing a protagonist like Elspeth as the receiver of such an important and key fate was brilliant. Yes, she has this incredible fate, but she chooses to fight for things in the moment. The future is the future and Elspeth pursues that which is happening right now. The crossover between being master of her own reality, and a pawn in the great scheme of things was really nicely done and very much appreciated.

Carmody’s creation of the different guilds within the misfit community was very well done. Her use of a combination of entirely made up, and modern words made sure that I knew what each guild did from their first mention. It was just yet another reminder of Carmody’s ability to mix our modern reality with a future one. But, the part that I enjoy the most is that it has elements of the past – or at least the past how I imagine it. The burning of seditioners, the over-arching power of one religious faction and a group of elite in power are all entirely plausible aspects of a not-so-pleasant future, but they are also aspects of our own pasts.

The Farseekers was a great story all on its own, but it was an even better bridge and introduction to the challenges that would be faced throughout the rest of the Obernewtyn Chronicles.

<- Obernewtyn Review Ashling Review ->
Image source: Wikipedia

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