In a world struggling back from the brink of apocalypse, life is harsh. But for Elspeth Gordie, born with enhanced mental abilities, it is also dangerous.
Survival is only by secrecy and so she determines never to use her forbidden powers. But it is as if they have their own imperative and she is brought to the attention of the totalitarian Council that rules the Land.
Banished to the remote mountain institution of Obernewtyn, she must throw off her cloak of concealment and pit herself against those that would resurrect the terrible forces of the apocalypse. Only then will she learn most truly who and what she is ...
Elspeth is determined to uncover the plot and so, accompanied only by her cat, Maruman, embarks on a terrible adventure full of danger, the conclusion to which promises not just uncertainty about her safety but also that of many around her.
About the Author
Isobelle Carmody is Australia's most highly acclaimed author of fantasy titles for older readers. She began her first book, Obernewtyn, when she was fourteen and since then she has written some of our greatest works of fantasy. She is perhaps best known for her Obernewtyn Chronicles and for her novel The Gathering (joint winner of the 1993 Children's Literature Peace Prize and the 1994 CBC Book of the Year Award). Another of her novels, Greylands, was joint winner of the 1997 Aurealis Award for Excellence in Speculative Fiction - Young Adult Division, and was named a White Raven at the 1998 Bologna Children's Book Fair. She has also written many short stories for both children and adults.
Isobelle divides her time between Prague in the Czech Republic and her home on the Great Ocean Road in Australia.
Isobelle's final book in the award-winning Obernewtyn series – The Sending – will be published in May 2011. Her first book in a new series for younger readers – The Red Wind – will be published in 2010.
In the tradition of Andre Norton and Marion Zimmer Bradley, Carmody embarks on a promising new series featuring telepathy, empathy and other psychic talents. On an Earth nearly wiped out by radiation and chemicals that have whitened the sky and poisoned the land, surviving humans have built a semi-agrarian culture. Though their own religious leaders, the Herders, have paranormal powers, they persecute the mutated Misfits, whose psychic abilities they view as a form of subversion. Thus, Elspeth Gordie, an orphan, conceals her exceptional abilities (prophetic visions, the ability to communicate with animals) from the other workers around her. Nonetheless, she is discovered and taken to the legendary Obernewtyn, an isolated town reputedly full of horrors. But instead of the tortures she expects, Elspeth finds friends and learns of the harmful experiments performed elsewhere upon talented Misfits and of the destructive powers that may have survived the Age of Chaos that ruined Earth. Though most of Carmody's characters are clearly bad or good, she avoids blatant stereotyping by imbuing many with conflicting interests. She also presents the Herders' primitive culture in considerable and vivid detail, from Elspeth's arduous ride through the Western Mountains to a farmer's daily life of toil and gossip. Despite their abilities, the Misfits are at the mercy of their superstitious culture and those who run Obernewtyn--a plight that generates convincing plot turns. This is the first novel by Carmody, an Australian children's writer, to appear in the States. Readers will look forward to more. (Sept.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Julia Beiker - Children's Literature
Orphaned at a young age, Elspeth and her older brother, Jes, find survival tough in world that has been partial destroyed by the Great White explosion. It gets harder when the Council discovers that Elspeth has special powers that enable her get inside other people's minds. To save her brother, Elspeth accepts the Council's punishment of being sent to an isolated place called Obernewtyn. Anyone sent here never returns to the lowlands so little is know about the place. Some believe that it is an experimental facility that cures mental defects while others fear cruel and unusual punishments happen. With a strange cat in tow, Elspeth arrives to discover a little of both. Within weeks, she makes friends. Within months, one friend dies and the other disappears. More weird things occur before Elspeth discovers the truth behind Obernewtyn. Isobelle Carmody invents an interesting world, plot and characters that have survived an atomic explosion. The first few chapters may not seem interesting but keep reading because Elspeth's story will leave you wanting more. 2003 (orig. 1987), Starscape Book,
In a post-holocaust world of enforced pastoralism and strict adherence to a religion that bans technology, a young woman labeled a misfit or mutant finds herself condemned to a prison farm known as Obernewtyn. There, she encounters others with psychic powers like her own and discovers a dark secret concerning the mysterious triumvirate who control the destinies of the young people assigned to their care. An award-winning author of children's books in Australia, Carmody crafts a thought-provoking tale of courage and sacrifice that should appeal to adult and YA readers alike Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
First of a post-nuclear science-fiction series, and first US outing for this Australian children's writer. Years after the nuclear-holocaust Great White, the repressive, all-powerful Council rules with the help of priestly Herders. Dissenters are condemned and burned; mutant Misfits are sent to the eponymous forbidding mountain fastness. Orphan Elspeth Gordie—her parents were burned—can hear people's thoughts and communicate telepathically with animals. She manages to conceal her deeper abilities from Obernewtyn's visiting Madam Vega, though she's still ordered across the Blacklands to attend the suitably gothic edifice, where she makes friends with Matthew, another telepath, and blind Dameon the empath. In turn, Rushton, the green-eyed overseer whose status and motives are unclear, notices Elspeth. Beautiful Cameo has been "treated," her mind filled with hypnotic blocks. Dr. Seraphim, Elspeth learns, thinks demons lurk in Misfit minds and uses hypnosis to combat them, while Vega and the vicious Alexi seek a telepath to help locate powerful machines hidden since the Beforetime. Terrified, Elspeth feigns feeblemindedness, so Vega and Alexi focus on Cameo—and destroy her mind. The Council, meanwhile, has sent men to apprehend Elspeth. Somehow she must escape, braving the Blacklands, winter snows, and Obernewtyn's insensate, bloodthirsty guardian wolves. For some reason, Rushton's willing to help. Pedestrian and one-dimensional: Carmody's not the first to stumble attempting the transition to an adult audience.
Series: Obernewtyn Chronicles
For Ages: 12 - 17 years old
Number Of Pages: 264
Published: June 1993
Dimensions (cm): 18.0 x 11.2 x 1.905
Weight (kg): 18.1