Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Teen Tuesday: The Reader by Traci Chee (audiobook review)

The Reader by Traci Chee. Sea of Ink and Gold bk. 1. Unabridged audiobook on 10 compact discs. 12.5 hours. Read by Kim Mai Guest. Penguin Random House Audiopublishing, September, 2016. 9780147525710. (Review from audiobook borrowed from the public library)

It's Teen Tuesday! This week's feature is a high fantasy called The Reader. The Reader is author, Traci Chee's debut and the first book in the Sea of Ink and Gold series. Sefia is an orphan who has been on the run with her Aunt Nin ever since her father was brutally murdered years earlier. She has only one item connected to him - a strange rectangular object which opens to reveal paper decorated with odd scratchings. It is a book, but Sefia and nearly everyone in her world are illiterate. She is in grave danger because the powers that murdered her father are after the book, and her. The suspense is high throughout this layered and nuanced book as readers struggle along with Sefia to figure out they mystery.

The audio performance by Kim Mai Guest was well-done, although it took a bit of extra attention to realize that there is a book within the book. There's a light-as-air, musical quality to her voice that is very easy to listen to. A bit of patience is required through the set up but well worth it. The world building here is quite vivid and the writing is lovely. The tension slowly ratchets up and once the pieces began clicking into place, the book ends, leaving readers panting for the next installment. The Speaker is due out November 7. 

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