The Cup Of The World Paperback – 6 Jan 2005
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"Superb piece of story-telling . . . Readers of Jan Mark and Philip Pullman will consume it with delight - with the pleasing prospect of its two sequels" (Lindsey Fraser Guardian)
"This first novel is an ambitious fantasy saga . . . After a dramatic opening scene, the pace of the book slows and then builds to an exciting and disturbing climax" (The School Librarian)
"While high fantasy, it has the claustrophobic feel of a political and moral thriller that constantly surprises your expectations" (Books for Keeps)
"This outstanding first novel is extraordinary and deserves to become a classic of children's literature. Serious and thought-provoking, it is very well written, substantial and evocative" (Inis)
"An exciting and absorbing experience" (writeaway.co.uk) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
A beautifully-structured and powerfully-described fantasy novel set in medieval times.See all Product Description
Top Customer Reviews
By turns tragic, grand and sometimes genuinely unsettling, 'The Cup Of The World' will satisfy both children and adults. On the surface is the story of a young woman caught in a web of love and war, politics and witchcraft; but there is a deeper story here, the history of a world that never was, questions about betrayal, vengeance and the loss of innocence. A truly worthwhile read.
Dickinson has put considerable effort into researching the mediaeval "gothic" period, to create a realistic world of daily life, petty princes, warfare and monasteries, into which to place his story of magic. Writers, like Tolkien, who have such a coherent "back-story" are rare.
There is a realistic humanity to the characters. There is not the cannot-do-wrong hero or always-evil-baddie, (with the exception of some malign magical powers). Rather, whilst we have some clear heroes and enemies, all display only typical levels of self-interest, weakness, duplicity and generosity that any human will have. This is another level of sophistication rarely found in this genre.
Finally, the plot itself is sophisticated. There is no obvious best action that the hero has to choose. Rather, complexities are revealed to every action, as in the real world. Everyone desires unity to avoid war, but no one is willing to give up the power that they have.
On top of that is a page-turning plot that draws you in. Whilst the book stands on its own, the book ends with a tense situation that draws you in to the sequel.
Declaration of interest: the author is a friend of mine.
Phaedra gets telepathic whispers from someone she's never seen, who claims to fall in love with her. He lives in a land on the other side of the Circle Sea. She's a princess and he's a lord of his own land. Through long months they communicate, and come to understand each other so well that she decides to marry him.
Maybe she should have thought again....
Read this, enjoy it, then give it to your young teenage friends or kids. They use the internet to talk to people they don't know.