Since moving house a few months ago, I haven’t had as much spare time for reading as I'd like. I've re-read a few of the books from my library but just haven’t had my head on straight enough to search out new reads.
Thankfully a friend lent me Obernewtyn by Isobelle Carmody and it was just what I needed—a new author and a great read!
Set in the distant future after the world has experienced near total destructions by something known only as ‘The Great White’, Obernewtyn follows the story of Elspeth Gordie, a ‘Misfit’ with enhanced mental abilities.
All Misfits are feared by the Council, the totalitarian ruling body, who hunt them down and exile them to Obernewtyn, a council farm with a horrible reputation:
“Like every orphan, I had heard stories about Obernewtyn. It was used by parents as a sort of horror tale to make naughty children behave. But in truth very little was known about it.
[ ... ]
Some said it was just like another Councilfarm, and that the master there had only sought labour for an area too remote to interest normal labourers. Others said Lukas Seraphim was himself afflicted in some way, and pitied the creatures, while still others claimed he was a doctor and wanted subjects to practise on.
Those Misfits taken there were never seen again, so none of those theories had ever been authenticated properly. But such was the legend of Obernewtyn, growing over the years because of its very mystery, that it was feared by all orphans, not the least because in more modern times it sent out its own keepers to investigate the homes, seeking undisclosed Misfits among the inmates.
When Elspeth is discovered and sent to Obernewtyn she discovers that there is much more going on than meets the eye and nothing is what it seems, including her own abilities. Faced with ruthless rulers and impossible choices, Elspeth must unravel the mystery of Obernewtyn to save herself and her friends.
Creative, captivating and well written, Obernewtyn is the perfect adventure for fantasy lovers aged 14- to 114-years. (There are 7 books in The Obernewtyn Chronicles which is wonderful if, like me, you hate waiting for the next book to be released.)
P.S. An Isobelle Carmody picture book here.