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Knife: Knife Paperback – 8 Jan 2009

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Orchard Books (8 Jan. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1408303124
  • ISBN-13: 978-1408303122
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.4 x 19.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 107,971 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

R.J. Anderson (known to her friends as Rebecca) was born in Uganda, raised in Ontario, went to school in New Jersey, and has spent much of her life dreaming of other worlds entirely. Now married and a mother of three, Rebecca reads to her sons the classic works of fantasy and science fiction that enlivened her own childhood, and tries to bring a similar sense of adventure and timeless wonder to the novels she writes for children and young adults.

Her first novel KNIFE (known as SPELL HUNTER in the US) was longlisted for the Carnegie Award and also won the 2011 Concorde Book Award; it and the subsequent faery novels REBEL (known as WAYFARER in the US), ARROW and SWIFT have gone on to become bestsellers in the UK. ULTRAVIOLET, a psychological thriller for older teens, was released in June 2011 and will be followed by a companion novel, QUICKSILVER, in May 2013.

Product Description


"Readers will fall in love with Anderson's debut." (The Times)

"Compelling and mature...maintains its suspense to the final page" (Books Quarterly (Waterstone's))

"Perfect for the kind of girl who enjoys fantasy with a dash of romance" (The Times)

"Pure pleasure...highly recommended" (The Times)

"A compelling adventure/love story" (Financial Times)

"Love, fear, compassion and courage are woven into a magical story" (Amanda Craig, The Times)

"This is the best kind of fantasy: a book that makes fairies wonderfully real" (Sarah Prineas, author of THE MAGIC THIEF)

Romance, intrigue, mystery, adventure. I didn't want to put it down! (Cork Evening Echo)

Book Description

KNIFE is a classic fairy story, with a feisty heroine and a dark side...

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By I Read, Therefore I Blog VINE VOICE on 5 Feb. 2009
Format: Paperback
An accomplished and charming debut novel, there is much to enjoy in this story. The faery community is well realised, with relationships and characters clearly depicted. Bryony is a determined and resourceful heroine who doesn't take no for an answer and a scene where she steals a knife from the humans (from which she takes a new name of Knife) is tautly written. Supporting characters, such as the crotchety Thorn and kindly Wink, help to give depth to the story and Queen Amaryllis is nicely ambiguous for the reader to wonder what is going on.

Anderson never descends into sentimentality, giving a matter-of-fact account of the hardships faced by the faeries to ensure their daily survival by gathering berries and hunting small animals. Particularly good is the threat from Old Wormwood, a crow who has eaten several of the faeries and developed a taste for them.

It's refreshing to read a novel with a central character who is in a wheelchair and Paul is an interesting character who I'd have liked to have seen more of on the page. It was a surprise to discover that Paul is of driving age because the portrayal of both him and Bryony had made them seem younger but also because this book is marketed for 9 - 12 year olds, and it's not often you see protagonists in their late teens in such books. This didn't make the story any less entertaining, but it was a jolt when it came.

The main criticism to make about the book is that the backstory is spread a little unevenly throughout the plot, with a large amount of exposition coming in the final quarter. I also found myself a little confused by the proliferation of character names at a couple of spots and found myself having to turn back a few pages to work out who was who.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Boo on 24 Mar. 2011
Format: Paperback
I thought this was a very good book. It's all about a faery who wants to discover more about her peoples past, and the human world. Her life is complicated looking after a little faery, whilst playing the part of the Queens hunter. And as she tries to find out more about the Sundering, she realizes that she's not the only one who wants the truth. The discovery of faery Heather's diary reveals the past of the oakenwyld and more strange mysteries are solved...

This book is full of emotion, happiness, and curiosity. It's one of my all time favourite books and I would deeply recommend it for girls that love reading. But remember, this isn't just any old fairytale...this is Knife
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Format: Paperback
I know its the wrong reason to buy a book but it was the cover that attracted me. When I saw it it just jumped out at me and I had to buy it!!

I love fairies, fairie stories, everything about them. So many books on this subjuct lately have been about evil fae, half human fae, human sized fae, but this book took me right back to when I was little and reminded me of the Enid Blyton far away tree storys. I loved them. And Knife was just as good. These are good old fashioned, teeny tiny, winged fairies. And its a nice change. I enjoy all fairy stories, its just something about the little ones living in the oak that I just loved so much! I couldn't put this book down. I read this and the sequel Rebel whilst laid up after knee surgery and dying of boredom, and they definately kept me entertained.

I loved Bryony's fierceness. Her longing to escape the life she'd always known, stuck inside the oak. Her stubborness and her balls. She was so different to other fairie characters I've read. I always knew she'd find a way out, and play a huge part in the survival of the other fairies.

I found it engaging, very descriptive and exciting and thought the ending was spectacular. I don't care that this book isn't aimed at someone in their twenties. If you can open up your imagination and like some escapism from boring adult life, then this is definately for you.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Sarah Joanne on 9 Jan. 2009
Format: Paperback
I picked up Knife on impulse in the city of Bath last week - I wish I lived in Bath so I could go back and kiss the bookseller. It is one of the best modern children's books I have read in a long time.
The protagonist Knife (Bryony) is an immediately attractive character, whose individuality and personal strength have the reader rooting for her from the very beginning. The other characters in the Faery Oak tree are well drawn and believable, and the reader really gets a sense of the small community with all its various personalities and prejudices. The story combines traditional ideas of Faery with a modern twist - through the interaction of the rebel, Knife, with the human boy Paul it offers a unique view of humanity seen through the eyes of a race which live apart from humans and yet on their doorstep, and shows the damage that fear and misinformation can cause. The culture clash between Knife and Paul despite their obvious affinity for each other is intriguing, and leads well into the mystery created around the 'sundering' of the Oak tree where the faeries live from the rest of the world. The story also offers an imaginative view of the human creative process, containing as it does both inset stories and artworks. Above all, this book is well written, enthralling and incredibly imaginative and I couldn't put it down. Fantastic - more please!
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