Genre: Young adult fantasy
Date Published: November 2007
Publisher: Knopf Books
# Of Pages/Listening Time: 432 pages/13 hours 51 minutes
Goodreads | Audible
Synopsis: For Paula, accompanying her merchant father on a trading voyage to Istanbul is a dream come true. They have come to this city of trade on a special mission to purchase a most rare artifact—a gift from the ancient goddess, Cybele, to her followers. It’s the only remnant of a lost, pagan cult.
But no sooner have they arrived when it becomes clear they may be playing at a dangerous game. A colleague and friend of Paula’s father is found murdered. There are rumors of Cybele’s cult reviving within the very walls of Istanbul. And most telling of all, signs have begun to appear to Paula, urging her to unlock Cybele’s secret.
Meanwhile, Paula doesn’t know who she can trust in Istanbul, and finds herself drawn to two very different men. As time begins to run out, Paula realizes they may all be tied up in the destiny of Cybele’s Gift, and she must solve the puzzle before unknown but deadly enemies catch up to her. . . .
.....For being an enjoyable listen
This was definitely a young adult kind of novel. The plot, the love triangle, the strange quest.... It's got young adult written all over it.
I did enjoy the story. Quite a bit actually. But I still had a few problems with the tale.
First, the quest itself seemed a little strange and prolonged. I know it was supposed to be a lesson of sorts, but it still seemed a little odd in my eyes.
Second, the plot was pretty predictable. I knew who the villain was instantly, and I knew who was going to fall in love and live happily ever after. It was a very easy plot.
Third, and most of all.... I. Hate. Love triangles. Especially in young adult novels. There's too much miscommunication and jumping to conclusions. Being in a happy and loving relationship myself, I can't help but cringe whenever I read about lovers who don't actually talk to each other.
Beyond those issues, I still had fun with the story. I didn't realize it was a sequel until it was too late, but that didn't make it confusing in the least. It's a light enjoyable read, worth a look if you like novels by Marillier.