Valerie's Reviews > Skin Hunger

Skin Hunger by Kathleen Duey
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Sep 22, 08

bookshelves: young-adult
Read in September, 2008

Skin Hunger is the first book in a trilogy about wizards and magic. But these aren't your typical Harry Potter wizards, and the Academy in this book is no Hogwarts. This book is much more bent around misery and corruption (with a little hope added for good measure).

The story alternates (literally chapter by chapter) between two characters, Sadima and Hahp. Sadima is a young woman who left her farm life behind to move to the city of Limori, to be with a man who understands her magical talent (the ability to communicate - through thought - with animals). There she lives with and assists two magicians who are living outside the law and working to bring back magic.

In a parallel time, Hahp is a young apprentice wizard who is training at the "academy", a place where young men are abandoned by their generally wealthy families (it sucks to be a second son or just unwanted in this fictional time period). There they are starved and treated abhorrently, while hoping to become the "one" who graduates. They have little control over their fate, and study and work and struggle to survive.

This book was dark, almost like a menacing fairy tale of olde combined with the more twisted imaginations of new, but strangely I didn't find it to be particularly gripping. Although the characters were likable and interesting, I just didn't get to the point where I really felt their pain all that much. At a certain point, I was reading this book just to see where the story was going, and then IT HAPPENED.

What happened, you might ask? It's not a spoiler, don't worry.

It's not a spoiler because I COULDN'T SPOIL THIS DUMB STORY IF I WANTED TO BECAUSE KATHLEEN DUEY ENDED IT RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE WITHOUT TELLING ME HOW IT ENDED.

I'm not sure if you can tell from the all-caps, but I REALLY HATE THAT.

So now I'm sitting here steaming, trying to decide if I want to get the next one from the library, or if I just want to hate her. (Update: Now I REALLY hate her, because I just looked it up and the next book isn't published yet.)

If only I could bring some wizard magic down on her ass...

Don't read this book unless you're very, very patient. Either that or it's ten years from now, and the trilogy is complete.
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