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Darkness Rising: Book One of The Catmage Chronicles (Volume 1) Paperback – September 20, 2012
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About the Author
Meryl Yourish has been writing since the ninth grade, when she wrote her first short story about alienation after moving to a new town and attending a new school. The story made it into the Parents Night magazine, and her writing career was born. She spent most of her life in northeastern New Jersey. She moved to Richmond, VA in 2002, where she lives with two cats that look suspiciously like Goldeneyes and Letsan. Find out more about Meryl, her cats, and The Catmage Chronicles at www.merylyourish.com.
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There are a wide range of characters, including the Catmages, Andy and his band of friends (and enemies!), and the Catmage antagonist and his gang. Some of the Catmages have two names, like Goldeneyes, where one is more of a nickname.
Andy is the one whom the Catmages are searching for in order to help defeat the Darkness, which has risen up again after nearly three hundred years. The Son of Aaron is who can help save the Catmages. He is a young teen coming from a single-parent home. It turns out he can identify quite a bit with Goldeneyes, and they form a strong bond with one another. In many ways, Andy is the kind of kid you want to be your friend: loyal, kind and protective.
The world building of the Catmage society and their history was woven in perfectly, as Goldeneyes teaches Andy about her life. As it turns out, when Goldeneyes briefs Andy on all of this, the last time the Darkness rose coincided perfectly with the Salem witch trials. The Wild Ones, those expelled for breaking the Laws of Secrecy and other laws, are responsible yet again for the Darkness rising up.
The Catmages have a council and a Compound where they reside, and the Wild Ones and the Evil One have invaded. Life for Catmages is in turmoil. At the core of the conflict are political agendas and strife. A greed for power.
Unfortunately, the Evil One has captured one of the wisest and most powerful of the Catmages – Goldeneyes’ grandmother – and the prophecy states that Andy is the way to defeating the Darkness. Goldeneyes and her catty friends are helping Andy – and later his friends – to figure out how to rescue Nafshi from the Evil One.
There’s just a bigger problem: the Evil One knows who Andy is, and how to manipulate him to his advantage. Andy has his own set of problems at school, headed by Taylor the bully, who creates problem after problem for Andy.
The relationships in this first installment are what make this book strong and complete, from the Catmages to the humans and everywhere in between. Plus, the Evil One’s neighbor seems to be the only person the Evil One fears. Mackie is great!
"Darkness Rising" introduces a world that you just wish were real, and Meryl pulls it off so well that by the time you finish her book, you're still not completely sure that it isn't. Andy Cohen is a likable thirteen year old who has nice friends, gets teased by the school bully, and has yet to come into his own. It is when Goldeneyes, a magical cat, comes into his life that a whole new reality opens for him, and for us as well. It turns out that the cats that we take so for granted have amongst themselves a secret society of magic, full of apprenticeships, spiritual growth and a hierarchy of wisdom and power. And who is to say that it ain't so? Anyone who has ever spent time with a cat knows full well that you're never quite convinced that there isn't something more going on behind those mysterious eyes than they let on. And it is this sense of mystery and subtlety that Meryl delves into so artfully.
Goldeneyes opens a world for Andy that he never knew existed, and in the process facilitates a coming of age that he scarcely could have imagined. And as we are introduced into the Catmage society, we meet individuals who mirror personalities that we will all identify with. You almost want to smack some of them because they are so insolent, and invite others into your home because they are so likeable.
I won't lay out the plot; suffice to say that it is thoroughly believable, and develops in an arc that leaves you completely open for more. There is a quality of good books and works of art in that they tell you something about yourself that you knew, but didn't know you knew, and that was the feeling I was left with as I completed the book. It's a great read; fun, easy, accessible, and thought-provoking. And without a doubt, there is a film in here. So, young adult, older adult and everyone in between, by all means get a copy and dive into it. You won't regret it - it is a delightful read.
I loved this book so much!!!!! It was great that Goldeneyes found the thing she was looking for. I don't think that the cat that had died should've died. I was surprised by the cats talking about the council! Then, when I read on, it made sense. The catmages had gotten their human language long ago. I loved it and i cant wait for the next book!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! XDXDXD
I have to mention I did meet the author Meryl by chance at a restaurant and she told me about the book. I ordered it and thought it was great. I'm a bit older than the target audience but enjoy fantasy novels and thoroughly enjoyed this. I don't remember too many of the details, I'll probably read it again before reading the second book, but I do remember each of the cats having their own personality, which a cat person will appreciate.
I also remember hoping that certain things happen in the second book and justice is served, so we'll see what happens! I will definitely be ordering the second book.
Most recent customer reviews
They could have done NOTHING FOR A WHOLE YEAR AND HAD THE EXACT SAME OUTCOME! How does that make a good book?Read more