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Vessel Hardcover – September 11, 2012
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From School Library Journal
Top Customer Reviews
Once every hundred years, the goddess of the Goat Clan (Bayla) is summoned from the dreaming to ensure that her clan survives the next century. Her soul fills a human body - a vessel - to work the magic that brings rain to the dessert, increase the herds and make the oasis green again. Without the help of her magic, people wouldn't be able to survive in the ruthless, desolate desert that is their homeland.
For centuries, people of the dessert have been summoning gods and goddesses and for centuries they've been following the same sacred ritual: the dreamwalk would chose the vessel for the goddess, preparations would be made and, finally, the ceremony would take place during which the goddess would take over the vessel's body, killing the vessel's soul in the process. Chosen to be Bayla's vessel, Liyana is ready for her sacrifice. For years she's been training in preparations for this moment. The goddess does not come, though, and Liyana - accused of being unworthy of the deity - is abandoned by her clan and left to die alone in the dessert. Heartbroken and desperate, she is found by Korbyn (a trickster god inside of his vessel), who tells her that her goddess did not, in fact, abandon her, but was captured and imprisoned. And five other gods shared her fate.Read more ›
This is the crowning glory of Sarah's career. By far the greatest novel she's ever written. How can I even begin to talk about it? This is Sabriel levels of good, on a whole other playing field from Y.A.; just a pure fantasy adventure.
Let me put it this way: I only have two days off from work and sleep is precious to me. I stayed up until 5 am until I had finished this book, crying, laughing and nail biting all the way.
There's honestly no good way to begin, besides READ THIS BOOK. Liyanna, thank god, is not your typical world weary, hardened heroine that's really just a boy character in a girl's body that has ~extra emotions~. Liyanna is just a girl, practical and strong--but you discover this strength over the course of the book. It's so beautiful that you can watch how this girl turns from vessel and master over the novel's story. It's coming of age that rattle's her entire country. Slipping into her voice is just like waking up, as if she's not a character anymore, but your friend sitting right beside you and telling you of this adventure she had many moons ago. In the end, when she finally takes true charge of her own fate, it isn't droll and self righteous, making you sigh at this Sarah Conner knock off. It feels exactly like watching Bruce Wayne climb out of the pit of darkness.
She doesn't have to break tradition and give her history, religion and culture a big middle finger to "find her own strength". Those things are her strength. She continually has respect for them, even if she must defy them. She's so completely and utterly human, she lives and breathes right off the page.
And Korbyn.Read more ›
Vessel by Sarah Beth Durst
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Publication Date: September 11, 2012
Rating: 5 stars
Source: Copy gifted by a friend
Summary (from Goodreads):
Liyana has trained her entire life to be the vessel of a goddess. She will dance and summon her tribe's deity, who will inhabit Liyana's body and use magic to bring rain to the desert. But when the dance ends, Liyana is still there. Her tribe is furious--and sure that it is Liyana's fault. Abandoned by her tribe, Liyana expects to die in the desert. Until a boy walks out of the dust in search of her.
Korbyn is a god inside his vessel, and a trickster god at that. He tells Liyana that five other gods are missing, and they set off across the desert in search of the other vessels. The desert tribes cannot survive without the magic of their gods. But the journey is dangerous, even with a god’s help. And not everyone is willing to believe the trickster god’s tale.
The closer she grows to Korbyn, the less Liyana wants to disappear to make way for her goddess. But she has no choice--she must die for her tribe to live. Unless a trickster god can help her to trick fate--or a human girl can muster some magic of her own.
What I Liked:
Can I just say "everything" and be finished? Yes? Please. Because seriously, this book was THAT GOOD. I was shocked that I liked it that much. I had a feeling that I would enjoy it, but LOVE? Five stars? Wow. This book blew me away, in the best of ways. The gods and goddesses thing had me kind of skeptical, because I generally don't enjoy books that deal with deities. I don't know why. But I really, really liked this one, as you can see.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A well done fantasy adventure, which puts the heroine in the impossible situation of having to choose to save herself or her people. Read morePublished 3 months ago by adrianne
Ahoy there me mates!
A lovely book. A desert girl has been raised her whole life to be a vessel for a god. On the day of her death, the god does not come. Read more
I like Durst writing style and knew I would like this book. I was not disappointed, this was a beautiful story with great detail and feeling. Read morePublished 6 months ago by LoveBooks
PLEASE DO NOT HESITATE TO GET THIS BOOK! If you're a fan of The Girl of Fire and Thorns series or anything similar to it with a strong lead female character this is the book for... Read morePublished 12 months ago by Jailyn
Originally reviewed at http://www.shaelit.com/2013/01/review-vessel-by-sarah-beth-durst/
This book pulled me into such a cascade of emotions! Read more
I've only read one of Durst's other books- Ice, a retelling of "East of the Sun, West of the Moon"- which I enjoyed, though the pregnancy was awkward. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Kel @ Booked til Tuesday
Wonderful. Very original story and premise and I loved the characters. However, the ending was a little rushed and the payoff wasn't entirely earned. Still, well worth the read.Published on August 17, 2014 by Alexandaria
Life is arduous for the clans of the desert. They prize their traditions and independence from the Crescent Empire, and they depend on the beneficence of their gods. Read morePublished on February 28, 2014 by James A. Langley
I never write reviews, but this book left such an impression on me that I can't believe it's not higher up Amazon's sales ranking. Read morePublished on January 19, 2014 by beangirl