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Brotherhood of Shades Paperback – 26 Sep 2013

4.9 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Authonomy (26 Sept. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007523599
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007523597
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.8 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,087,852 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

‘A wonderful new fantasy’ - Jonathan Stroud, author of the Bartimaeus Sequence

‘With Brotherhood of Shades, Finch has proven herself to be an author to watch’ The British Fantasy Society

About the Author

Dawn Finch was born in London, and works as a Children's Librarian and Reader Development Consultant.

Customer Reviews

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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
In this exciting novel Ms Finch builds a convincing world that is in between life and death. The Brotherhood was formed during the dark days of the Reformation to hold back evil spirits plotting to take over the land of the living. But Adam is a twenty-first century boy who finds that D'Scover, and the Brotherhood, have high hopes for the help he can give them. Not only has Ms Finch created a page-turning narrative but also some especially memorable characters; Adam, D'Scover and Eddie are three characters I would happily spend time with again. This is an enthralling and throroughly enjoyable debut and I look forward to reading more from this author.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The Brotherhood of Shades was formed way back in the 1500s, at the time when the plague was claiming huge numbers of lives and King Henry was busy destroying the monasteries. This ghostly order's mission is to protect the world of the living from the world of the dead and it seems that even today there is work for it to do. In modern day London a nameless, homeless teenage boy lays dying. Sadly there are no living friends or relatives to mark this child's passing, but his death is of great interest to Sister Goodman and Toby D'Scover, members of the Brotherhood. Could this boy, now called Adam after the street where he was found, be the Sentinel, the special powerful spirit they have been waiting for? Toby certainly hopes so as there has been a noticeable increase in the number of disturbances reported and he fears that this is building up to something very nasty indeed.
This debut novel is a real treat for fans of fantasy fiction. The action takes place in and around well-loved landmarks, such as the British Museum and St Paul's Cathedral and refers to historical events like the Great Fire of London and the Dissolution of the Monasteries. The book includes a list of websites leading the reader to further information about these places and events, so there is the opportunity to learn a thing or two while enjoying an exciting story. Adam is a character that will appeal to teenage readers as he has, among his other qualities, a wonderful sense of humour that is illustrated very well in his lively conversations with Toby D'Scover. This is a young man who is going to enjoy being dead far more than he ever enjoyed being alive. In contrast, Toby is serious, even dour, but the way in which he has adapted modern technology for use by the ghostly brotherhood is admirable. There are surely many more adventures ahead for Adam and the members of the Brotherhood and I look forward to the next story.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I loved this book. I found the characters Adam and Edie endearing and D'Scover enigmatic. The book was well researched and written in a way that draws you into the different places, both now and in the past and into the unknown. A great debut and hope to see more from this author.
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Few books excite the imagination as this did, there are passages of pure creative joy and scintillating imagery conjured lavishly. Good imagery weaves effortlessly the magic and intrigue from the world's of the past, present and between the living and dead. Exciting and original I hope to see much more from this author. The only thing I would say is the cover doesn't do it justice, leaning more towards the Gothic than enticing with the story telling.
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'Brotherhood of Shades' manages to use historical fact and real locations to create a mythology of it's own - whilst keeping the reader enthralled. With an intriguing story and characters you'll want to follow beyond the last page, this is a compelling story for young and old alike.
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Now I'm not a great fiction reader, normally read Biographies, History etc, but Brotherhood of Shades had me hooked from the first chapter. I loved the characters, D'Scover, Adam & Edie. The plot kept me enthralled throughout, right up to the climactic ending. I thought that the use of actual historical events & places in the plot gave it some useful reference points that one could use to maintain a degree of realism within this excellent adventure.
A fantastic debut from Ms Finch and I look forward to reading the follow up.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I always judge a good book by its capacity to hold me mentally in another world, long after I have put it down, and this one didn't disappoint. `Brotherhood of Shades' entirely captivated me, and I looked forward to returning to the world of D'Scover and Adam each night.
There were historical and specific references weaved into the storyline, which I expected to find fault with, but didn't - always a good sign. Furthermore, the language struck just the right balance; not trying to be too pretentious or patronising.
As a parent I did note the subtle introduction of more challenging words and concepts, which were effortlessly entwined into the dialogue. Indeed Ms Finch has to be applauded for her ability to knit together a matrix of complex ideas, timelines, characters and places into an exceptional storyline with clarity and relevance. She is clearly on the side of her reader!
Despite half-predicting the end (being an adult) my favourite scenes were the final chapters (no spoilers, I promise). The vivid imagery and `theatre' that Ms Finch conjured up were spot on, and still live with me. My favourite character has to be Edie; when she was introduced the book did indeed seem to `ruffle [its] pages in pride'!
My dilemma towards the end of the book is that I kept reading past my designated chapter a night, as I didn't want to put it down, but I also didn't want to finish the story too quickly as that would mean I would have to leave the world of the Shades; something I wasn't willing to do. I am still in mourning, day dreaming, as my daughter would put it, about the book. Needless to say I thoroughly recommend `Brotherhood of Shades', and in the meantime I look forward to a sequel.
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