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The Book of Whispers

3.32  ·  Rating details ·  209 ratings  ·  117 reviews
Tuscany, 1096 AD. Luca, young heir to the title of Conte de Falconi, sees demons. Since no one else can see them, Luca must keep quiet about what he sees.

Luca also has dreams—dreams that sometimes predict the future. Luca sees his father murdered in one such dream and vows to stop it coming true. Even if he has to go against his father’s wishes and follow him on the great
Paperback, 386 pages
Published February 23rd 2018 by Text Publishing (first published October 3rd 2016)
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Average rating 3.32  · 
Rating details
 ·  209 ratings  ·  117 reviews

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Kirsty ❤️
Feb 23, 2018 rated it it was ok
I couldn't get into this one at all although the premise was really good. It's YA but really didn't feel it. The idea of every little thing having it's own demon felt a little weird. It made for a very busy world. 

I liked the idea of the magic and demons but for me it didn't gel well with the crusades story. This is the second book recently I've read that's tried to do this and I didn't like that either so maybe this is just a style that isn't for me. 

This one just wasn't my book. Free arc from
Always Pouting
Jul 24, 2019 rated it it was ok
Not sure what felt off putting to me about this book in particular. It's a book about the crusades and has some magic realism to it involving demons. Also it is a book intended for a younger audience and it did feel some what juvenile while I was reading it. I just had a hard time getting into this book. I didn't hate it but the writing wasn't for me and I also just generally find the middle ages boring including the crusades. I also just didn't feel attached to any of the characters and they fe ...more
Sofii♡ (A Book. A Thought.)

This book took me by surprise has been so fun, full of magic and action

I want to thank to NetGalley and Text Publishing Company for providing me with this copy in exchange for an honest review

4/5 Strars

You can find this and more of my reviews on my blog A Book. A Thought.

I was a bit worried when I started with it since it's a historical fiction, I wasn't sure if it would catch me, but the promise of demons and magic kept me interested, and when I was halfway through the book I realized that
Mel (Epic Reading)
Jul 22, 2017 marked it as did-not-finish
Shelves: arc-netgalley
DNF @ 61%

There's a distinct oddness to this book. It's a YA book set during the crusades. We have a lead gal and guy from very different walks of life. I was really enjoying the demons and stories of our characters right up until they met each other (45% in). And then all of a sudden the magic was gone. Yet ironically the introduction of a lot of convenient magic shortly after that is what turned me off in the end.

I love fantasy, but magic needs to be used so as not to just set-up convenient wa
Λίνα Θωμάρεη
Our story takes part in the crusade period. We travel along with Luke, the heir of Conte de Falconi, to Jerusalem and its salvation.
On the voyage you add Suzan daughter of a nun who runs it violently from the monastery that lived all these years and away from the only person who understood her. Her mother.

On this journey we see a part of Italy at that time, we know the Byzantine city of Constantinople, and we understand it is to go from one end of the world to the other whether it is on foot or
Jun 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult
This is the first YA novel that I have encountered which takes place during the Crusades. I think high school students who have some background knowledge of the Crusades would thoroughly enjoy this book. The vivid descriptions of young Luca's encounters on his way to Jerusalem transport the reader back in time. The conflict with the demons who prey upon the pilgrims creates an original twist to the story line, which I think a majority of teens would find alluring. I will suggest this book to my ...more
Jun 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
A refreshingly original and gripping novel.

“We cry enough tears to salt our meal, to fill our flasks.”


The year is 1096.

Pope Urban II calls for a military expedition to regain the Holy Land. This quest is now known as the First Crusade.

Luca is the heir to the title of Conte de Falconi. He is not an ordinary young man. He sees things other people can't see. He knows there are demons attached to every object a human holds dear. He has strange dreams that may predict the future. He bec
Jun 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
I'm not sure where to start with The Book of Whispers because I was all over the place with my thoughts on this book. When I say I'm a fan of historical fiction, I mean, I'm a huge fan of Victorian England historical fiction. So 11th century Tuscany wasn't something I ever thought I'd be super interested in. And I have to admit when I first started the book... I wasn't.

When The Book of Whispers begins, we find Luca at home dealing with his cousin - whose character reminded me of that annoying ta
Anika Claire
Oct 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Wow, this was awesome. I didn't know a whole lot about the crusades for some reason, and now I feel so sad at the horrors that are committed in the name of religion over and over.

Review posted on Tea in the Treetops in October 2016:

The Book of Whispers is Kimberley Starr’s winner of the Text Prize for 2015. It’s a story of love, loss and demons, in the crusade to free Jerusalem from the Saracens.

Luca, the son and heir of the Conte de Falconi, sees demons, a fact he keeps well hidden after his a
Emily at Reaching While Rooted
Jun 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs
This review and others can be found at

A believable combination of fantasy and historical fiction, the novel is a look at the Crusades if they were being inspired and driven by a host of demons. The book follows Suzan, a girl who was raised in a convent, and Luca a recently titled Conte as they try to save the world from a host of demons (which only they can see), and their experiences with the brutal and atrocious realities that made up one of the most turbulent and h
Annemieke / A Dance with Books
Sometimes I browse Netgalley. I don’t do it often, but when I do my eye sometimes stumbles on some titles. Of course with a title like The Book of Whispers there was no way that was going to escape my attention. Also the cover I found very eye catching. Unfortunately the book could not quite live up to it.

If I had to describe my reading experience of The Book of Whispers in one word it would be boring. I was bored for most of the book. Especially the start of the book really had nothing that dre
Oct 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This was intense, informative and enthralling. Adventure, magic and mayhem bound by beautiful, evocative language. A must read!
The crusades are a rich and interesting time in our history. It’s a period in time that isn’t common amongst fiction writers (well not the ones I’ve read anyway).

Taking a little creative license, Kimberley adds a layer of the fantastical to an already intriguing and busy plot by adding demons.

The addition of demons to an already religion-charged story would always raise a few eyebrows, but despite there being a strong religious and spiritual backbone to the story, there were only a few times th
Text Publishing
‘An epic novel that merges history, make-believe, romance and the harshness of the Middle Ages.’
PS News

‘A stunning mix of high action, enthralling history and mesmerising magic.’
Alison Goodman, author of New York Times bestsellers Eon and Eona

‘The Book of Whispers combines history, fantasy, romance and the brutality of the Middle Ages in a satisfyingly epic novel.’

‘The Book of Whispers is fast paced and bloody in parts, not shying away from the brutality of the period and the at
Elise McCune
Oct 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
In Tuscany, 1096 AD. Luca, who is the young heir to the title Conte de Falconi, can see demons. It is something Luca must keep quiet because of the wicked priest Lamberti. Luca also has dreams that predict the future and sees in one of them his father murdered and vows to make sure this doesn’t happen. This leads to Luca following his father on a pilgrimage to capture the Holy Lands.

In far away Cappadocia, Suzan, who lives with her mute mother in an underground convent has a vision of a brown-h
Pam Tickner
Mar 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
It was hard to rate this book as it wasn't a genre I enjoy. I bought it based on that it won the Text Prize and that it was about the crusades, which I'm very interested in. The writing is excellent and the story very well told, but too much fantasy for me, I didn't enjoy all the demons, but I can appreciate the story telling for a YA audience.
Christiane (Pages Unfolding)
Tuscany, 1096 AD. Luca can see demons, and when his father entrusts him with the Book of Whispers, an old family heirloom, his powers seem to intensify. His father is about to embark on a Crusade to "free" Jerusalem from the rule of the Saracens. Luca foresees his father's death in a dream and therefore decides to accompany him to prevent it. On their way to Jerusalem, he meets Suzan, who lives in a convent together with her mother, and who happens to be the only one able to actually read the bo ...more
I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

"'We each have a different truth,' Brother Bonaccorso agrees. 'But our differences don't mean other people are wrong.'"

Tuscany, 1096 AD. Luca is the heir of the Italian Conte de Falconi with the unfortunate ability to see demons. Joining his father and narcissistic cousin on a pilgrimage to conquer the Holy Lands for Christ, the last thing he expects is to meet a stunning Cappadocian woman or to engage in a battl
KarenJo Custodio
Mar 07, 2018 rated it did not like it
The Book of Whispers by Kimberley Starr had an intriguing premise, but unfortunately, I just did not find anything exciting about the story.

I tried to read this a few times, but it never did work out. At first, I thought I just wasn't in the mood, so I set it aside. I'm a mood reader and sometimes I like to read more contemporary than fantasy or sci-fi. However, that was not the case at all with this book. While I thought the synopsis was kind of interesting, I just wasn't a big fan of the story
Ankita Singh
Aug 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley-books
Thanks to NetGalley for giving me an ARC of this book! 😃

I didn't know a lot about the crusades, so this book has left me shell-shocked!

The characters of Luca and Suzan, and the romance they share are all the sweetest things possible in the mayhem of the demons and all the evil that surrounds the pilgrims to Jerusalem.

There was history and there was fiction, there was comedy and there was romance. There was suspense and there was sarcasm.

So all in all, The Book Of Whispers was a power-packed,
Sheila Goicea
I received a copy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!
Jun 15, 2017 rated it liked it
I liked it. It wasn't terrible.
May 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Note: I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in return for an honest review.

The Book of Whispers takes place during the Crusades and follows Luca, who can see demons, and Suzan, who has a mysterious lineage and gift. Their stories start off separately and then converge as the two journey with the pilgrims of the Crusade, first to fight the Saracens and then to fight a greater threat – the demons Luca can see are planning something disastrous, and only together with Suzan and a mysterious
Bookish Indulgenges with b00k r3vi3ws
Set in the early 1900s, The Book of Whispers is the story of Luca and Suzan. Luca can see demons and that is fact that he keeps well-hidden after a childhood experience. His dreams are like premonitions and so when he sees his father getting murdered, he decides to follow his father on a journey in order to be able to prevent it. That is where he meets Suzan, a girl raised in the convent and on the run after a close call at the convent. The thing is that Suzan too can see the demons. So together ...more
Amy Gennaro
I was given this book by NetGalley for free in exchange for my honest opinion.

I loved this book. It is an excellent teen or adult read. It takes place in the times of the first crusades and discloses some of the facts and realities of that time. It does include demons and magic, too, so it is an excellent fantasy book, too. I really enjoyed the book and would look forward to reading more by this author.

The only editorial note is that I sometimes got confused as to who was telling the story as i
May 19, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: netgalley
The premise of this teen historical-fiction is very interesting. Set during the Crusades, the two main characters can see demons and end up learning about a plot involving the demons that they need to stop. I enjoyed reading about the interesting evil characters in this book, both demon and human. However, in order for me to really enjoy a book I need to be surprised by something. I felt like I knew what was going to happen as soon as I started reading this. Thanks to NetGalley and Text Publishi ...more
Sep 27, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks
First things first: I received this book through NetGalley.

I ave such a lov/hate relationship with this book, it's not even funny. The cover was the thing that made me give this book a second look, cause it's gorgeous. The story sounded super interesting. It just didn't work for me at all.

Summary: Tuscany, 1096 AD. Luca, young heir to the title of Conte de Falconi, sees demons. Since no one else can see them, Luca must keep quiet about what he sees, or risk another exorcism by the nefarious prie
Amra Pajalic
Oct 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: loveozya
Great fantasy young adult novel about Luca, a knight in training, Suzan, who is escaping danger, the crusade and demons. This is a love story, history lesson, and rolicking adventure book all rolled into one. Loved this book and can't wait to read the sequel.
Jun 28, 2017 rated it liked it
Greatly appreciate stories based on legends and mythology. However, I could not get into this YA story of demons. Therefore, I’m not the right reviewer for this book. This most likely will appeal to the audience it targets.

@FB: Best Historical Fiction
Dec 04, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
It is so unusual to find YA written about the Crusades. I actually can’t think of any I have read in the past so “Book of Whispers” was a particularly intriguing book. I was fascinated and horrified by this account, some of which is based on historical documents and actual events. What takes this historical fiction into the realm of fantasy is the inclusion of demons. These invisible demons were mostly attached to objects and secretly goaded people to do evil. In real life I think people are cap ...more
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