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Book Review

‘Advent’

10/24/2012

Courtesy of Beaverdale Books
Review by Cathryn Lang
Atria Books
7/03/12
$26
451 pp

 

A literary critic caught my interest with a claim that “Advent,” by James Treadwell, was the first of a trilogy to rival the magic of the “Harry Potter” series. Was the reviewer correct? I had come late in the game with “Harry Potter,” and I didn’t want to be the last on my block to discover literary magic this time.                

The setting alternates between the 16th century and present-day England as this dark and intricately detailed story unfolds. A Magnus has the vessel containing the entire store of the world’s magic. This vessel is tragically lost when he is killed, and the magic lies dormant for centuries.                

Gavin is an adolescent who has been speaking with an apparition all his life. To avoid further embarrassment, his parents send him to live with his equally strange aunt in a remote part of Cornwall. Traveling on the train to Cornwall, Gavin draws a seat partner who is inexplicably drawn to him. Auntie is not there to claim Gavin at the station, and his seatmate delivers him through the moody and foreboding Cornish countryside to the carriage house of the manor where Auntie is employed. Auntie is not there either. Against her better judgment, Gavin is left there alone. Fantastic creatures and events occur immediately upon his arrival in Cornwall. Throughout this first book, the reader only begins to unravel the various mysteries introduced.                

This trilogy is aimed toward the adult reader and obviously sets the stage for the upcoming books. Treadwell’s descriptions of the Cornish coast and countryside were especially captivating. Did it rival “Harry Potter?” Not yet, but I will keep an open mind and try the remaining books before making a final decision. CV

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