Hank's Reviews > Sabriel

Sabriel by Garth Nix
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's review
Apr 20, 2008

really liked it
Read in April, 2008

This book took me a long time to read. Not so much because it was dense, which some parts are, but because the detail was the right balance of in the moment and the world at large. So the world unfolds in pace with the story, which made it fun to visualize and rethink what had already happened in light of what you learn about how the Old Kingdom and the Charter work. What made it even more fun to read was that the world was just fleshed out enough to feel like it had rules and ideas that were constant and dependable throughout (like aspects of the Charter; stones, marks). Nix gives enough that one can imagine what a part of the Kingdom that we haven't come to yet looks like, and yet still be surprised (but not betrayed) at whatever new elements we come upon during Sabriel's travels.

Sabriel's character is inexperienced but brave. So brave that she attempts tasks clearly beyond her because they are routine tasks for her position. Even so, she admits often enough that she doesn't know what she's doing. This bit of self awareness makes the bravery believable, and it also gives Nix a chance to give more information about the world. Or a chance to let Mogget be sarcastic and coy, which a patient reader could be amused with. I say patient because we ultimately find out more and more; the mysteries never outpace the answers to an extent that it was frustrating to continue.

Good book! I liked it the best of the three.
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