Obernewtyn: The Obernewtyn Chronicles 1

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9780375857676: Obernewtyn: The Obernewtyn Chronicles 1

In a world struggling back from the brink of apocalypse, life is harsh. And for Elspeth Gordie, it is also dangerous. That's because Elspeth has a secret: she is a Misfit, born with mysterious mental abilities that she must keep hidden under threat of death. And her worries only multiply when she is exiled to the mountain compound known as Obernewtyn, where—for all her talents—Elspeth may finally and truly be out of her depth. Then she learns she’s not the only one concealing secrets at Obernewtyn.

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Review:

In the '80s, American music experienced an Australian invasion, and the '90s brought a literary Australian invasion, with prominent Down-Under SF/fantasy writers like Stephen Dedman, Greg Egan, Sean McMullen, Lucy Sussex, and the late George Turner receiving new or greatly increased American exposure. Award-winning author Isobelle Carmody, whose Obernewtyn (Book One of the Obernewtyn Chronicles) is finally available in the U.S, belongs in these ranks as well.

Appropriate for adult and young-adult readers, Obernewtyn is a fine post-apocalyptic novel in the tradition of Andre Norton, Marion Zimmer Bradley's Darkover series, Leigh Brackett's classic The Long Tomorrow, and the post-disaster novels of John Wyndham (especially Re-Birth) and John Christopher.

After the nuclear holocaust of the Great White, the surviving humans condemn all Misfits (mutants) to either death by fire or exile to Obernewtyn, a remote mountain institution where mysterious experiments are performed on some exiles. Elspeth Gordie is a Misfit, struggling to hide her mutant mental abilities and earn a Normalcy Certificate. But when her secret is betrayed, she is sent to Obernewtyn, from which no one has ever escaped. At Obernewtyn she finds not only dreadful experiments, but ambitious overlords who seek to use the Misfits' paranormal powers to recover the devastating secrets of nuclear war. --Cynthia Ward

From the Publisher:

"Through the breadth of her vision, the depth of her characters, and the strength of her language, Isobelle Carmody has created a world completely realized in all its details and completely persuasive. Multi-leveled, multi-dimensional, the Obernewtyn Chronicles promise to be a major work of fantastic imagination-which, given our past history, may not be all that fantastic. Young adults will surely find it absorbing; so, too, will their elders." --d Alexander

"A very forceful and carefully constructed tale that keeps the reader engrossed. One will indeed look forward to the following volumes promised." --Andre Norton

"With its plucky heroine, post-holocaust setting, and the fascinating puzzle of mental abilities enhanced by genetic mutation, Obernewtyn reminds me of the best of Andre Norton's work. Carmody offers us a similar sense of mystery and wonder to Norton's classic novels, but with an original voice and great heart." --Charles de Lint

"A brave, multi-talented girl, her interesting friends, and animal characters with minds of their own--this book is a dream date for me." --Tamora Pierce

"Isobelle Carmody's writing possesses the rare qualities of clarity and restraint, making the fantastic, post-apocalyptic world of Obernewtyn seem absolutely authentic. I envy those in Australia who already have access to the remaining two volumes of Elspeth's adventures." --Jeffrey Ford

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