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Kushiel’s Avatar by Jacqueline Carey

01/08/2003. Contributed by

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Buy Kushiel’s Avatar in the USA - or Buy Kushiel’s Avatar in the UK

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pub: TOR. 702 page hardback. Price: $27.95 (US), $38.95 (CAN). ISBN: 0-312-87240-2.

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The review for this book, ‘Kushiel's Avatar’, for some reason took me a long time to write. I know what I think of the book. A great many things. Probably, in fact, too many.

It is again as beautifully written as the first two novels in the trilogy (‘Kushiel's Dart’ and ‘Kushiel's Chosen’) and again follows the story of the beautiful Phèdre nó Delaunay - courtesan and spy in the city of Elua in Terre D'Ange.

Kushiel’s Avatar by Jacqueline CareyIn this concluding part, Phèdre goes on a quest on behalf of Melisande Shahrizai- the villainess whose royal aspirations were thwarted by Phèdre in the preceding part.

In undertaking this quest, Phèdre stretches her relationship with her ex-Cassiline consort Joscelin to breaking point. The book is, as Jacqueline Carey said in a recent interview, the darkest of the three.

I would, however, assert that the darkness literalised and broodingly quickened in Drujan and the worship of Death in Daršanga is well balanced by the overabundance of light and heat in the arid desert of Jebe-Barkal.

Phèdre's quest consists of two parts. One is to discover and attempt to retrieve Melisande's son, Imriel, who is kidnapped at the beginning of the novel. The second part is to learn the name of God (no half measures) so she can free her closest and oldest friend, Hyacinthe, from the geist that holds him bound as the Master of the Straits.

Doomed to live forever but to age as normal. For this sacrifice Hyacinthe made for the sake of Terre D'Ange, Phèdre goes to the ends of the earth and faces any number of dangers. There is an added element of

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