- File Size: 3384 KB
- Print Length: 344 pages
- Publication Date: January 25, 2017
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B01MZDXBQ3
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
#538,257 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
- #1792 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Children's eBooks > Science Fiction, Fantasy & Scary Stories > Fantasy & Magic > Sword & Sorcery
- #3008 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Action & Adventure > Fantasy
- #13153 in Books > Children's Books > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy & Magic
Refuge Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
Then, when everything becomes too much, Nell falls through a doorway and finds herself in another world.
If Nell’s new friends, Janus and Fox are to be believed, Refuge is a terrifying fantasy world created from the mind of a madman. But the further Nell explores, the more Refuge looks like something else. A haven from the loneliness of her real life.
I went into Refuge knowing nothing about it, but with a glowing recommendation from a friend. I read a bit of Middle Grade but only the novels that transcend their target audience. Refuge does.
I love the lively imagination of Refuge. It’s a world that opens for any young person who feels vulnerable or superfluous. The history behind the world is unique and complex, which renders the characters living in the world unique and complex. Mather works shades of grey into her novel with exquisite skill. All of the children in her novel are lost, but Mather doesn’t mistake being vulnerable with being good.
Characters are pretty amazing in this novel. They come from a wide range of backgrounds and eras. Playing guess-the-time-period based on their speech patterns is a lot of fun. Though time period isn’t the only thing to guess. Social standing and nationality come out in the speech patterns too. All of them are pretty much exactly what I’d expect for the characters’ time periods and birth places.
Speech doesn’t exactly a character make, so as to the substance behind the words, that’s pretty impressive too. Janus is immediately likable. Her character – confident, decisive and abrupt – comes alive from the first page. The villains however, are in a class of their own. There are three major antagonists and they all have their own quirks, goals and motivations.
There is so much room for another novel in this world and I really hope that it eventuates. This novel was an amazing adventure, but it’s only whet my appetite for a more definite conclusion.
The main character is a 12 year old trying to find her way but I thoroughly enjoyed the book and I'm in my thirties.
It's great to read a new Australian author and hear about Australian places and people in a fantasy setting.
I'd fully recommend and this Author is definitely one to watch!!
When Nell is shunted off to North Queensland and the care of her rarely seen Grandfather for the holidays her problems seem magnified. Doesn't anyone care that she's struggling?
Well, someone does...some 'place' actually: Nell just doesn't know it yet. Stumbling around the grounds of the local high school in search of the holiday drama class her parents insisted she attend Nell finds herself following a series of curiously worded signs. Feeling lost? one beckons. Follow the stairs, instructs another. Before she knows it Nell has turned the handle on an old wooden door and stepped straight into a world she could never have imagined: Refuge.
This rapidly paced fantasy novel targets middle grade (8-12 year-old) readers and is written in full-colour and high definition. The beguiling cast of characters who inhabit Refuge — a world created as a safe haven for lost souls — take Nell on a twisting, turning journey of self-discovery (and manage to give young readers some sumptuous but ever so subtle historical insights in the process).
There is the Doctor, Refuge's mad scientist-style creator who hails from early 1700s London; then we have tortured Gideon, an English ‘wharf rat’ from the late 1700s still ruled by his past; there's shape-shifting 1920s aristocrat Fox, as charming and cunning as his name suggests; the frightening Deuce, straight from America's Deep South in the 50s; and Janus, probably the most mysterious and hard-to-pinpoint of the bunch (I won't ruin it for you by revealing too much about her). Each of them pull Nell (and us) deeper into a riddle that seems impossible to solve.
Stranded in Refuge, our lost girl Nell finds out she has just three days to choose her future: stay in this strange, supposedly 'safe' haven forever or return to the life where she felt lost?
Refuge is the debut novel of former scenic artist and teacher A.V. Mather and it is clear she is a writer who is very much at home in the realms of fantasy. Refuge is a world well imagined. The city-scape with its era-hopping evolution feels rich and enchanting — I really enjoyed spending time there.
And Nell's journey kept me guessing in lots of good ways. However, I did feel her character's growth, which was realised at the end of the book, could perhaps have been built more incrementally as the story progressed. I love a character with chutzpah and while I know that isn't who Nell was at the beginning of her journey, there were junctures along the way when I was frustrated by her willingness to be led rather than make her own decisions.
Perhaps this is all part of the author's plan, though. When I turned the last page of Refuge I was ready to dive into book two...Nell's adventures don't feel finished yet. I hope A.V. Mather is planning to send Nell back to Refuge with another book in the series because I see her returning and this time as a very different girl.
The world-building is superb, the characters are incredibly vivid & 3 dimensional, & the (cautionary) tale is full of tasty twists, super- imaginative creatures & situations, & clever, authentic dialogue.
I feel as though the author's left it wide open for a sequel & I'd be interested to know if that's in the works.
It's also incredibly high-quality writing: the author obviously loves language & has a really pleasing 'voice'. Will be recommending this one to friends for sure.
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