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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A trilogy that will not die
The third in the Garth Nix Trilogy about the supernatural adventures of Sabriel, Lirael, Touchstone, Mogget, The Disreputable Dog, Sanar, Ryelle, Ellimere and Sameth. They are the only ones who can re-establish what the seven strove to do long before.
This is a book about magic, supernatural creatures, the fight to overcome destruction by an evil force and...
Published on 22 May 2005 by matimus-book-worm

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars A good read
Enjoyable end to the trilogy, but not something I'd have followed through with had it not been for my need to finish a series
Published 12 months ago by jwhezzy


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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A trilogy that will not die, 22 May 2005
This review is from: Abhorsen (Paperback)
The third in the Garth Nix Trilogy about the supernatural adventures of Sabriel, Lirael, Touchstone, Mogget, The Disreputable Dog, Sanar, Ryelle, Ellimere and Sameth. They are the only ones who can re-establish what the seven strove to do long before.
This is a book about magic, supernatural creatures, the fight to overcome destruction by an evil force and cameraderie.
I loved this book because all the characters are colourfully described and the story was well structured, well written and compulsive.
This trilogy was the best read I have read for a long time. It is suitable for the ages of 11-17 years old. Start with Sabriel and read them in the correct order or you will be confused.
If you have read the first two books of the trilogy: Sabriel and Lirael then you will love Abhorsen. In fact if you read the first two, you won't be wondering whether to buy Abhorsen, but how quickly you can get your hands on it. If you haven't started this trilogy yet then you should.... you will not be dissappointed if you like supernatural fictional adventure.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Absolute Masterpiece, 12 April 2005
By 
Jasper Wong "jbywong" (Canterbury, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Abhorsen (Paperback)
Abhorsen is an increadible book. The entire book is written in a very graceful but yet very easy to understand style. There are certain parts in Abhorsen that are very well detailed and very sad.
The plot continues from Lirael, about the necromancer Orannis who's goal is to destroy the world. The people chosen by destiny to foil Orannis' plots are few; Lirael, Sabriel, Touchstone, the representatives of the Clayr, and Prince Sameth. Orannis has controlled a lesser necromancer called Hedge to force (by finding people in death and binding them to a necromancers will) spirits to work for him. Unfortunately, Nick, unwittingly walked into Hedge, was bound to the necromancers will, and was unwittingly about to cause the destruction of the world.
Abhorsen ends the 'old kingdom' series stunningly. The previous two books, Sabriel and Lirael were very interesting and very well written, and Abhorsen only outdoes it predecesor, Lirael. The only problem about Abhorsen is that it is the continuation of Lirael, which ended on a cliffhanger. Abhorsen picks up almost exactly where Lirael left off so it is essential to read Lirael before you read this.
Abhorsen has finished the series so that Garth Nix still has space to write a sequel (or another story related to Abhorsen), thank goodness, as many people especially the people who enjoyed the 'old kingdom' series, will want to read more.
It is quite rare to have a series that has a great first book, second book, and third book. Usually the first book will be the best, the second very disappointing, and the third slightly better, though no-where near matching the quality and style of the first. The fact that the 'old kingdom' series is a trilogy that has a great 1st book, 2nd book and 3rd book makes it so outstanding, because no book in the series is very disappointing or boring. That is why this series is such a huge hit on the best seller list (look at the amazon.co.uk science ficiton section and fantasy, young adult section, childrens books section and you will see that Sabriel, Lirael, Abhorsen never is out of the top 25).
The best thing about this book is that some parts (the prologue: at least until you find out the truth, and the ending) are so sad and touching that it could make you cry.
This is written in a very gripping and sad way, though not in a very heavy and blunt pessimist way.
This is a great end to a series that doesn't seem entirely finished yet: What happens to Lirael and Sam? What happens to Mogget? What does the Disriputable dog do in death? What does Sabriel do? What does.........What does..........
The only way to find about these is to wait.
A must buy for people who have read Sabriel and Lirael. For people who haven't buy all three and enjoy!
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87 of 92 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A thoroughly enjoyable ending to Lirael, 28 Jan 2004
By 
h3rne (Manchester, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Abhorsen (Hardcover)
It is misleading to call this a sequel to Lirael when in fact it is actually the second half of the story - I would not recommend reading this book without having read Lirael first (in fact I would suggest strongly that you purchase both together!) Neither does this second book (Lirael + Abhorsen) do more than touch tangentially on the characters in Sabriel. However, for me the characters are almost secondary to the world Nix has created and I have high hopes that he will continue to explore this complex and clever setting in further books.
The only reservation I have, is Nix's tendency to continually pit his young and inexperienced central characters against overwhelmingly powerful adversaries, and then use some kind of "deus ex machina" to have them succeed. This repeated pattern throughout the three books so far begins to feel formulaic at times.
That said, the prologue will have your heart in your mouth, and the pace rarely lets up from then on (I read the book in a single evening, simply unable to put it down). The characters are well drawn - Sabriel and Sameth continue to struggle with their respective identities, whilst Mogget is ever enigmatic (or perhaps merely capricious) in word and deed. The disreputable dog remains a ludicrously invulnerable, but faithful servant (but at least we get to understand why come the final denouement).
Finally, most convincing of all, is Nix's depiction of his world - this interface between a pre-electronic (1950's?) Britain and a world of magic where the dead walk and machinery fails is convincingly drawn. The magic is internally consistent and lucidly described, and the detailed and well thought out 'Nine Precincts of Death' add a tangible sense of realism that is often lacking in this genre.
In the end Nix skilfully places his characters in reach of further books, tidying up most of the important questions, whilst leaving just enough unanswered so the reader is left with a satisfying sense of completion but not closure.
More please!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Seminal Young Adult Fantasy, 24 Jan 2005
By 
Zoe "Zoe" (N E Lincs, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Abhorsen (Paperback)
I'd say this is my favourite fantasy book ever. The reasons are numerous - the beautifully fleshed out characters, the blisteringly original ideas, well realised and logical magical systems, unique and beautiful world...I could go on.
The ending of this book, beautifully foreshadowed and movingly written, should be taught in schools. I cry every time I read it - and that's not because of heavy handed sentimentalism but through delicate and powerful writing.
Now to handle a couple of criticisms I see here in the reviews section. The first is that this book is not quite as good as Sabriel. I'm afraid that this isn't the case. Technically, the writing is in fact far superior - more evocative, more precise, and showing far less evidence of 'info dump' syndrome. The story is also a lot deeper, and the characters of Lirael and Sam, flawed as they are, are more convincing than perfect, noble Sabriel and Touchstone (much though I love them). The second criticism is that Nix used a 'deux ex machina' to end this book. 'Deux ex Machina' literally means 'God in the machine' - where some powerful other force comes along and gets the hero out of a mess from which he cannot extrict himself. It is a hallmark of sloppy writing. This term is inaccurate: Nix puts his characters in a position to solve the problems that oppose them, and they do, after much pain and sacrifice. There's no miraculous solution, and no hint of a panicky writer using Deux ex Machina to fix his plot problems.
I'd say that this book is an essential read for any lover of fantasy. It explores new ideas with such verve that it has had a huge effect on the YA and fantasy genres; and for that alone it deserves its bestseller status. But it's also a thumping good story. So buy it!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Ending To A Magnificent Saga, 16 Mar 2005
By 
ShannonMcN (Co. Down, N.Ireland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Abhorsen (Paperback)
Sabriel is one of the best books I have ever had the pleasure of reading. After that, getting a sequel that would match it, i thought, would be impossible. I was happily proven wrong in Lirael and Abhorsen. The new characters; Lirael, Sam, Nicholas and The Disreputable Dog, are all just as lovable as Sabriel, Mogget and Touchstone.
In this final installment Lirael still strives to find Nicholas at the lake of reeds and the Destroyers army of dead Southerlings get closer and closer to their goal. Sam struggles with his terror of Hedge and Lirael accepts her fate as the Abhorsen in waiting.
This suspense filled climax to the story kept me hooked till the ending which was both emotional and satisfying. The only thing missing was a romance! Read all three or miss out!!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning Read.....Stunning Sequel to Lirael, 10 Feb 2005
By 
Jasper Wong "jbywong" (Canterbury, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Abhorsen (Paperback)
The final book in the trilogy keeps up the level of writing and the pace of the previous two (Sabriel and Lirael). Abhorsen ends the trilogy very well and the ending (and the rest of the book too, mind you) is written stunningly.
The entire series is about old magic, the charter, powerful necromancers, and the Clayr, the royal family, and the Abhorsen.
Abhorsen is mostly about Lirael, Sam, The Disreputable dog and Mogget's adventures rather than Touchstone's and Sabriel's adventures.
Abhorsen has a strong beginning and ending. The beginning is somehow shocking, but that shock is smoothened out later in the book. The ending is sad and touching.
Note: If you have read Sabriel but not Lirael, read Lirael first. Since this book is mostly about her and her companions, not reading Lirael will make you a little confused.
I recommend this book to anyone who liked Sabriel and Lirael. Anyone who is starting the series should undoubtedly start from the beginning of the series.
___
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark magic and tales of destiny - what more could you want?, 25 April 2004
This review is from: Abhorsen (Hardcover)
Before elaborating on Abhorsen, you have to read Lirael first to fullyunderstand the plot, as the two books share the same characters andstoryline, unlike the original Sabriel, which is a novel that is on itsown.
This is a fantastic book, incredibly satisfying, and by the end, Ihad a feeling of great contentment. Garth Nix is superb with his creationof the Old Kingdom and Charter Magic, and he uses the ideas to greateffect. The identities of the Disreputable Dog and the elusive Mogget arerevealed, and the terrible force that threatens to destroy the world isunmasked.
The plot: Lirael, the Abhorsen-in-Waiting (the currentAbhorsen is Sabriel; Abhorsens keep the Dead dead, so to stop themdestroying Life itself) and Prince Sameth embark on a quest to saveSameth's friend, Nick, who is ignorantly bringing about the end of theworld. They are helped by the Disreputable Dog and Mogget, two elusivecharacters who are as mysterious as ever (Mogget is great - I love hissarcasm). Other characters include Hedge, the necromancer (enemies of theAbhorsen who raise the Dead and use them for their own purposes}who isstrangely helping Nick, and there is Sabriel and Touchstone, the Abhorsen,who is also Queen of the Old Kingdom, and the King of the Old Kingdom,whose lives hang in the balance after the explosive beginning.
This isan excellent read, very entertaining and interesting. Even though it isthe last book in this trilogy, I hope that Garth Nix will write more booksof this kind - he is a true master of storytelling.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A worthy end to a great trilogy, 14 Jun 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: Abhorsen (Paperback)
Some people have judged Garth Nix's work for being derivitive. *Nonsense*! Anybody who has read this trilogy has heard a highly original creative voice, and a fantastic attempt to take us into the world of the Old Kingdom.
The strength of this book like the others is its inspired characterisation; I love Lirael's struggle to accept who she is, her grit and guts and resourcefulness, and the sardonic Moggett is one of the best characters in any story *ever.*
The fantasy element is very organic and well thought out; I love the idea of being 'taken into the swirl of the ever-lasting charter' and of being connected to every living thing - great stuff; not to mention the depiction of 'Death' which is quite chilling, but intriguing. I also love the final explanation about the Abhorsen's bells and who they embody. Lots of these tensions and mysteries are resolved in this final instalment.
Well-done Garth Nix you are a phenomenal author!
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic conclusion to this triliogy, 2 April 2004
By 
P. Buffery - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Abhorsen (Hardcover)
Excellent third book from Garth Nix to complete this series! After discovering Sabriel some years ago, buried in the back of a dust bookstore, I was completly hooked. Lirael was a good second book; which didn't disappoint, unlike a lot of second in the series books. Abhorsen finishes off neatly but leaving the option open for further books. I'm sort of hoping that Garth will write further books in this series...please?
Anyway Abhorsen is a quick read and probably suitable from young teens up to adults.
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54 of 61 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Watch out, Garth Nix is on the rise..., 6 Nov 2003
This review is from: Abhorsen (Hardcover)
"Abhorsen" hits the ground running, leaping into action directly after the events of "Lirael". From the explosive opening chapter to the heart-stopping finale, Nix shows he is no mood to let up on the pace and drama of the previous two books. This is a work of genius, with adventure and danger guaranteed to get the hardest heart pumping; and yes, we finally see all the way to the ninth gate. Any loose ends from the previous books are tidily resolved, and Nix answers all the questions he's made you ask along the way...of course, he leaves a couple of new ones as well!
Keep your eye out for this man...this trilogy might be finished, but there are more stories to tell yet.
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Abhorsen
Abhorsen by Garth Nix (Paperback - 3 Jan 2005)
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