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The Shamer's Daughter (Shamer Chronicles) Paperback – October 3, 2006


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 - 14 years
  • Grade Level: 6 - 9
  • Series: Shamer Chronicles (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. BYR Paperbacks; First Edition edition (October 3, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805081119
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805081114
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 5.2 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,416,610 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

One step, two steps, a slow, writhing waddle, its head lowered, no more than a foot or so off the ground…onward it came,…the long, long body curved like a winding river, huge and glittery…Almost the worst of it was the slowness…I could see its pale yellow eyes clearly now. Slowly it raised its head, swaying from side to side...

Dina stands transfixed in the pit of alligator-dragons she must cross to rescue her mother in the labyrinthine castle of the wicked Lord Drakan. Three people have been murdered by someone, and Dina's mother has been summoned to confirm the guilt of young Nico, who was found standing over the bodies with bloody hands. She is a Shamer, and to meet her gaze means confronting all the shameful acts one has ever committed. Yet she finds no guilt in Nico, and will not accuse him, although Drakan is strangely, and menacingly, insistent that she do so.

Dina has inherited her ability, but finds it alienates her from everyone in the village. She longs for just one friend who will look her in the eyes. But now Drakan has threatened to use his dragons to execute her mother publicly on the morrow, and Dina must find allies to save her. Before the story is over Dina will find those allies and that loyal friend--but also feel the dragon's needle-sharp fangs, in this exciting beginning to a promising fantasy series translated from the Danish. (Ages 10 to 14) -- Patty Campbell --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Grade 6-9–Like her mother, the local Shamer, Dina can see the shameful truths hidden in the souls of her fellow villagers–if only they will look her in the eye. Of course, everyone avoids her, and she has grown to hate her so-called "gift." Then Mama is taken prisoner, and Dina must use her truth-telling ability to solve a triple murder and rescue her mother and the young man falsely accused of the crime. Suspenseful and sometimes gory, this fantasy features interesting secondary characters and a well-drawn preindustrial setting. Occasional corny dialogue and overlong escape scenes won't deter readers, who will speed through the unfolding of the story's many mysteries: Who really killed the noble Castellan and his family? Why are there ravenous dragons at his castle? Whom can Dina trust now that the killer has seized control of the kingdom? Although only 10, she thinks and acts like an older child, and her increasing courage and resourcefulness in the face of evil doings, exhaustion, and the strains of her own talent will appeal to fans of Tamora Pierce's work. By the end of the book, Dina finds some peace as she makes a new friend and learns that her gift can heal as well as cause pain. Since the killer remains in power, plenty of conflict has yet to be resolved in the novel's proposed sequels.–Beth Wright, Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, VT
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Lene Kaaberbøl was born in Copenhagen in 1960, with suitable drama: the obstetrician had to rush from banquet and was still wearing his white tie and tails. She was 15 when her first two books were published, and since then she has written more than thirty novels and children's books. She has won several national and international awards for her fiction, and her work has been translated into more than 30 languages. At her recent nomination for the Hans Christian Andersen Medal, the IBBY Committee wrote: "She is incredibly skilled at constructing universes and shows remarkable loyalty to her stories and her characters. Lene Kaaberbøl's writing captivates the reader; her worlds draw you in, move you, make you laugh and cry and give you ample food for thought. And it is our assessment that her works have not just national and international potential, but the potential to become classics."

While fantasy is her preferred genre when writing for children and YA, there is nothing remotely fairytale-like about her crime novels for adults. The Boy in the Suitcase, written in collaboration with Agnete Friis, was called a "first rate thriller" by Michelle Wiener of Associated Press: "Written in that sparse, uniquely Scandinavian style sure to draw comparisons with a certain blockbuster trilogy (this is better), this story packs plenty of emotional suspense and interpersonal friction without veering into melodrama."

"I really enjoy writing in many different worlds - including our own - and for many different audiences. I sometimes feel it's the literary version of living in an auto camper: you can always change the view, and you're constantly meeting new people," says Kaaberbøl, who in real life lives on the small Channel Island of Sark, with her four dogs.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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The story is about trust, friendship, courage and choice.
L. Kragh
I definetely suggest this for a reader 5th grade and up, and for any adult that truly enjoys a good book with strong, realistic characters.
Jennifer J. Kozak
The first book is fantastic and you have to read it to understand the second, the thierd and ofcourse the last one!
Amanda Borghus

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By L. Kragh on May 23, 2003
Format: Paperback
The story is about Dina, a young girl coming of age, who has inherited her mothers gift - the shamer's eyes. When people look into the eyes of a person with this gift, they are confronted with the things they have done in their lives, and the kind of person they really are.
Most people find this experience very unpleasant or at least unsettling, but some people can look a shamer in the eye - without being affected by it.
Those are people who are very balanced with who they are; Because they are *good*, and therefore has very little to be ashamed about, or because they are so evil or selfish - they don't have any shame in them... But how do you know whether they're the one kind or the other? How do you know when you're only 10 years old?
When her mother is taken captive, Dina is forced to experience and understand the world on her own. Who can you trust? How do you know which choices to make? Dina finds herself caught in the middle of a political intrigue for the throne. The Lord Drakan wants to use her powers for his own ends - and Dina has to find out what's going on, defend herself against witch-charges, AND find a way of freeing her mother.
This is an excellent fantasy book. It's really well written, and the author masterfully ends each chapter with a cliffhanger that makes you go "What happens next???"
The story is about trust, friendship, courage and choice. It's amusing, full of suspense, and it gives children and adults alike lots of food for thought!
This book is a must-have for every child aged 9-13, and every adult who enjoyed reading Harry Potter!
It's the first in a series of four. (the last one will be published in Denmark this fall).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amanda Borghus on October 11, 2004
Format: Hardcover
The first book about Dina is a succes BUT

- It gets so much better! There are four books about the shamers children and you HAVE to read all of them!

In the second book we'll hear about Dina's brother Davin (or that's what he is called in the original version) and Dina's fight for justice for themselves and their new friend Nico.

The first book is fantastic and you have to read it to understand the second, the thierd and ofcourse the last one!

Amanda - the Dane who read them all in just a few dayes!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By B. Capossere TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 13, 2005
Format: Hardcover
The Shamer's Daughter is in itself a pleasant little story that moves along well and has at its core an extremely intriguing concept that here is unfortunately not fully explored, but the good news is that while Shamer's Daughter is an ok read, its sequel, Shamer's Signet, is a much stronger book, well-rewarding the reader who begins the series.

"Shamers" have the gift of, as one might guess, shaming. To look into a Shamer's eyes is to look into a mirror of your soul, revealing all that you have to feel guilty about. It's no surprise, therefore, that few people look into a Shamer's eyes unless compelled by law (Shamer's are used to confirm guilt or innocence in the social system). Dina's mother is an experienced Shamer called upon by those around her for matters of dispute, feared but respected. Ten-year-old Dina has inherited her mother's gift and for her it is a cause of isolation since none of her like-aged peers want anything to do with her (imagine the shameful things you did as a child).

When Dina's mother is kidnapped by Lord Drakan (the name alone would have clued her into his evil intent you'd think, not to mention the not-so-tame dragons he keeps below his castle), Dina must rise to the challenge of saving her mother, solving a royal murder, preventing the execution of an innocent man, and escaping herself from Drakan's clutches.

As mentioned, the story moves along relatively well. It's a quick read for the most part, with a few places that lag and a few too-contrived scenes. If Dina acts well past her age, it's a flaw easily overlooked.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Aspiring Inkling on July 29, 2004
Format: Hardcover
First of all, I must say that I am completely jealous of Ms Kaaberbol because she is bilingual and can translate her books into different languages-- and yet her English is amazing and creative! Her use of description, character development, and on-going action make this a very enjoyable-- and tense-- read. It is very suspensful and unpredictable.

My only draw back would be the hasty ending, but I'm sure that the future additions to the chronicles will make up for it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Charmaine on November 24, 2003
Format: Paperback
I'd like to put in my two pennies' worth of opinions...the Shamer's Daughter was a beautiful book! Dina's kindness and pure empathy came out really clear in it. I'm sad that Amazon.com neglected to check up on further books...there are some more actually, The Shamer's Signet is out in English. The Serpent's Gift and The Shamer's War are coming here soon...so watch out for them. Also, Lene Kaaberbol has other books such as Silverhorse.
Back to this book. Sorry, I tend to rave a bit. I don't tell you much about the plot because the other reviews do that well enough. Just know that the characters were certainly painted fine and this book is one of my favourites!
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