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Books of the Keepers Hardcover – April 30, 1993

Book 3 of 3 in the Spellkey Trilogy Series

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 245 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum (April 30, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689315198
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689315190
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,765,469 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 8 Up-- Fans will want to follow the continuing adventures of Caitlin and Badger in this third book in a series that began with The Spellkey (1987) and continued in The Glass Salamander (1989, both Atheneum); new readers can also comfortably join in. Seven years have passed since the last book ended. Caitlin and Badger, the latter now known as Matthew Binder, have married, and in so doing have broken their pledge to serve the Cloister of Chameol. Caitlin has taken on a new quest, partly as penance for the broken pledge and partly as distraction from her concern about their son, Bram, who was stolen in infancy by the Elf Queen. She must find the "Books of the Keepers," which hold powerful magic. Her struggles to find clues to their whereabouts involves her in exciting episodes, helped by new and familiar characters, notably Bram. Caitlin is able to find three of the books and return them to the library; the fourth one eludes her, and readers can expect the next volume to deal with that. As in the previous books, the main story is intertwined with interesting subplots that chiefly concern the relationships of adults in work and marriage. The whole makes for a complex, fast-paced story of high adventure and romance, written in the rich poetic language readers have come to expect from this author. --Virginia Golodetz, St. Michael's College, Winooski, VT
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews

In the third in a series (The Spellkey, 1987, etc.), the author interweaves four main stories and many minor ones in an intricate braid of elves, humans, and their offspring the goblins, all linked by love and magic. Caitlin the seer seeks the books of the Keepers; the wolf girl Ulfra finds love with the King's gamekeeper; Ylfcwen, elf-queen of Below, loses both her Consort Pending (Caitlin's stolen son Bram) and her goblin son Ethold to Above, where she, too, then goes; humans Fel and Ilona- -two strong and competent women--break tradition to set up as printers and woodcarvers. The many stories meet, separate, and join to form new stories, by turns menacing, poignant, funny, familiar, and strange. Downer's skill in building a wholly believable world that she unveils bit by bit is undiminished. There's not the dominant major plot found in the earlier books; but that hardly lessens the pleasure of exploring a world where the suspension of disbelief comes so easily. (Fiction. 12+) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 12, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I can't believe that: 1. this book hasn't had any reader reviews yet 2. Ann Downer seems not to have written any more fantasy, considering that she started this trilogy when she was 13.
I actually read the omnibus edition and if you can find it, you should buy that since all three books are interwoven on several story-strands (although you can easily enjoy them on their own). That's one of the joys of the series. Interesting characters constantly show up for a while and others pop-up and their stories take on a bigger dimension.
The whole series is RICH in imagery and description. It moves from the forest, to the tailor's shop, to the world of elves and goblin miners, to the royal court and the bawdy theatre. The plot (for the whole trilogy) is always heading somewhere and even in the intricate detail and jumps from one scene to another, it still manages to stay on track and hang toether in the end.
'The Books of the Keepers' sees Caitlin and the Badger living in the Weird Wood with their goblin changeling, Grimauld. Their relationship continues on a rather prosaic level after the young love in the first book and the wild but forbidden love in the second but I suppose Downer decided to take on the more realistic view on relationships.
It also continues the story of the wolf girl, Ulfra and her sidekick, Nix and brings back the Panther woman who was only given a glancing mention in the 'Glass Salamander.' Of course, Bran plays a big role and we see more of the fascinating underground world, history and lore of the elves.
It's definitely a book calling out for a sequel. Ann Downer, Please write more!! What happened to Elric and the disfigured girl? Is that all we are to know about Longaevi (people with wings- like the way we picture angels)?
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