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The Lost Art

de Simon Morden

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953227,319 (3.29)5
A millennium after a devastating war changed the direction of Earth's rotation, when the Church keeps science and technology suppressed, magician-like Benzamir and Va, a killer-for-hire turned monk, seek Solomon, who is surreptitiously spreading technology for nefarious purposes.
  1. 00
    The Obernewtyn chronicles. Books one, two and three de Isobelle Carmody (hairball)
    hairball: Similar themes--technology gets out of hand, destroys the world, and centuries/may years later someone must prevent that technology from being recovered by going on a quest of some sort. The Carmody books are definitely YA, not sure why the Morden books are.
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This book originally caught my attention when I read the review on the Amazon blog. I kept reading hoping it would get better. I finally gave up.

I didn't care about the characters, didn't care what happened to them, and even the sci fi angle failed to capture my attention. I never finished the book. ( )
  Thebrownbookloft | Jun 29, 2018 |
I'm not sure why this is a YA book--it doesn't have any of the usual YA themes, and the only young character doesn't have a POV in the story. I was fairly well entertained by the book, which takes place many centuries after Morden's trilogy from this year (and if that trilogy had a different ending, perhaps).

Maybe it's YA because there's no bad language, and no sex--but lots of YA books have both now, so color me confused. ( )
  hairball | Nov 16, 2011 |
Very intriguing. The initial premise didn't bode too well, but events mutated and ideas changed delivering an interesting and unusual look at common cultural themes. It was in danger of becoming polemical but neatly steered around those reefs, and instead left the reader to draw their own conclusions.

The opening features a monk named Va, living in some backwards country, discover that his monastery has been attacked by raiders. Watched by a strange woman Eleysa, he ascertains that his monastery's precious books have been stolen rather than burned with the rest of buildings and inhabitants. Va sets off to inform the Patriarch of this disaster, still accompanied by Eleysa. A disjointed character jump then takes us to Bezmichael who appears to be simply awed by wonder of the world, but turns out to be astute at reading people and situations. When attacked by a local prince, he manages to turn the situation to his advantage, and he too collects some followers - a servant and a boy. The third character only;y gets passing mentions Ibid, from the Kenyan Empire, who knows many tricks of technology.

Good bits: and subtly evolving plot with new facets being revealed over time that cast previous actions in new light and reveal more about the characters.

Bad bits: the 'super' powers of one of the characters was never explained. There was no reason for him to be able to act in the way he did, and no explanation ever given - this is a shame as it casts a poor light on the rest of the book's morality stories which were in general quite good. AT times the author comes very close to moralising and telling the reader how to think. Each time though he veers away and leaves the actual conclusions to be drawn as you wish. There is some dominant white/religious/male = good by default, thinking going on, but it isn't too prevalent, and some reasonably presented other races and genders do happen. The ever present religious meme does seem to have prevailed 1000 years into the future though.

Surprisingly enjoyable, especially given the unwelcoming start, and worth seeking out further works by this author. Although published as part of Corgi Children's novels, I wouldn't expect this to be that suitable for younger teens. ( )
  reading_fox | Jan 6, 2011 |
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A millennium after a devastating war changed the direction of Earth's rotation, when the Church keeps science and technology suppressed, magician-like Benzamir and Va, a killer-for-hire turned monk, seek Solomon, who is surreptitiously spreading technology for nefarious purposes.

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