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The Skeleth (The Nethergrim) Hardcover – Deckle Edge, May 10, 2016
"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Pre-order today
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From School Library Journal
Gr 6–9—In this sequel to The Nethergrim, the 14-year-old heroes from the previous tale take separate paths. Wizard-in-training Edmund meets Ellí, a young wizard who helps him learn magic but may not be trustworthy. Meanwhile, skilled horse trainer Katherine is forced to work as a scullery maid for Lord Aelfric after her father, John Marshall, leaves to seek the help of the legendary hero Tristan. Tom is traveling with John when they are attacked by the Skeleth, a hoard of spirit beasts in service of the Nethergrim. When John is overtaken by a Skeleth to become part of their army, Tom has to free the imprisoned Tristan and find an elder woman whose magic skills may help them defeat the evil spirits. Elsewhere, Lord Wolland from a neighboring barony is planning a war against the northern lands and thinks the Skeleth will aid him. When Edmund, Katherine, and Tom are finally reunited, they have to convince the local villagers to help them defend their land against Wolland's trained knights and find a way to stop the Skeleth, without killing Katherine's father. The narration of this pseudomedieval tale alternates among the three protagonists. Free of the cumbersome backstory that dragged the pace of the first book, this installment combines elements of fantasy, action, romance, and suspense and further defines the motivations of its characters. The book ends on a cliff-hanger that will have readers anticipating the next volume. VERDICT Fans of the first title will enjoy this new adventure; purchase this growing series where middle school YA readers are ravenous for epic fantasy.—Martha Simpson, Stratford Library Association, CT
Praise for THE SKELETH
"[A] solid contender for the teen answer to Game of Thrones." —Kirkus Reviews
"Jobin is a fine writer . . . Recommend this to fans of Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson or Brandon Mull’s Fablehaven series." —VOYA
"With this sequel, Jobin has expanded this fantasy adventure into a series of epic proportions. . . [T]he kind of series that hooks both new and veteran readers." —Booklist
"The book ends on a cliff-hanger that will have readers anticipating the next volume. Fans of the first title will enjoy this new adventure; purchase this growing series where middle school YA readers are ravenous for epic fantasy." —School Library Journal
Praise for THE NETHERGRIM
"Riveting. Perfect for imaginative middle-grade readers craving a hearty magical adventure." —Booklist
"Fantasy fans will find much to enjoy in this elegant gem of a novel." —BCCB
"An engrossing read. . . . Jobin combines elements of suspense and mystery with a pervasive sense of impending doom." —School Library Journal
"[T]his entertaining coming-of-age fantasy . . . is a solid debut for anthropologist Jobin, who steers clear of genre cliches while offering up a refreshingly metaphysical take on magic, a believably dark setting filled with unusual threats, and a seductive and manipulative villain." —Publishers Weekly
Top customer reviews
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Although the return of Edmund and Tom is expected, it's Katherine who reigns. She is highly featured or at least seems to be a strong young teen who takes her place among the greatest strategists to date. Her life lessons hone her skills and she develops her intuition which is a game changer.
The descriptions of battle was spot on. In many ways I felt like I was reading Gane of Thrones and Lord of The Rings. The emotion and anticipation of arrows made for a great roller coaster ride.
The ancient evil will be a must see when this will see a movie release. I for one have no interest of ever being taken. This evil grips you and the lesson here pulls you at the heart strings.
I only wish that the character of Elli gets more of a backstory. She felt like she could've been flushed out more for her reasons to get to know the characters. My hope is she is in the next book.
I felt like this book captured female characters well and have them a front seat to the action. They have a say in all that transpires and hold the key to this tale.
Looking forward to more :-)
The Skeleth picks up soon after The Nethergrim ends. Edmund, Katherine, and Tom spend most of this book apart from each other. While their adventures are mostly separate, they're interwoven as well. It all comes together beautifully in the end. Edmund continues to grow in his knowledge of magic and gains a teacher that may or may not be trustworthy. Katherine is living at the castle as a maid and continues to learn and plot from her vantage point there. Tom goes with John Marshall (Katherine's father) to search for Tristan, the hero of legend. Meanwhile, a greedy lord is making plans to go to war, using an unpredictable, uncontrollable, and horrific weapon.
This series is perfect for kids in the 10-14 age range. It's a weird stage between middle grade and young adult books where there's absolutely nothing good to read (except for this series). If your tween/teen reader loves fantasy, they'll definitely want to check out these books. They're full of magic, friendship, sword fighting, diabolical plots, wizards, war, and amazing horses. It reminds me of the Chronicles of Narnia, but not in a derivative way. It's original and imaginative.
Content: Fantasy violence
Source: I received an advanced readers copy (ARC) of this book in exchange for an honest review.
One of the real treasures of this series so far is how integral each character is in the ongoing plot. There is no one great character destined to save the world. This isn't a series where the lowly boy overcomes all, while no credit goes to his little sidekicks. Each character plays a part, using their individual strengths to make up for the others' weaknesses. Where one has magic, the other has military skill and strategy. Yet again, another has the wisdom and compassion. Seeing them realize how much stronger they can be together, how much can be learned from trust and teamwork, was a beautifully told lesson.
Not only do we get to experience the growth of the main characters, but there are so many secondary characters that evolve as beautifully. Edmund's younger brother grows to play an integral role, leaving behind his previous role as immature annoying brother. The young Harry, raised as a privileged heir, finds ways to come into his own, and become the man he needs to be. Even the parents and villagers evolve as they witness the darker aspects written so masterfully into The Skeleth.
It is never too heavy for young readers, but it definitely doesn't gloss over the strife and evil they are facing. It doesn't always turn out so happily for everyone, and each victory is recognized as being only a brief respite in the ultimate battle. It follows the well loved path of dramatic ultimate battles, betrayals, and burgeoning romances, but does it seamlessly, and without pilfering from works that have come before. It's a modern classic, and if the next books follow suit it will hold a place on the bookshelves of fantasy lovers for years to come. - GMB
Most recent customer reviews
The sophomore curse does not occur in the follow up book by Matthew Jobin.Read more