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The book eaters
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Library Journal Review
Dean's outstanding debut introduces a unique world featuring a clan of book eaters, people for whom books are food. Devon Fairweather, a female book eater, has been treated as a princess and is fed a carefully curated diet of fairy tales so that she fulfills her duty--to ensure the continuity of The Family by producing two children with two different fathers. When her son, Cai, is born, not as a book eater, but as a mind eater, she goes on the run to save him from a ghastly fate. Despite almost immediately experiencing the horrors Devon will visit upon humankind to protect her child, it is hard not to root for her, as her love feels so strong and pure. Katie Erich narrates Devon with the voice of a true storyteller, providing a mesmerizing performance that communicates the devastating harshness and rich emotionality of Devon's journey. Erich's calm tone is pleasantly grounded in a story that could be too dark, complex, or morally gray for some. VERDICT This is the type of dark fantasy that breaks out of the genre and into popular culture. Beautiful and intense, it is a must-listen.--Matthew Galloway
Publishers Weekly Review
Dean's unputdownable debut gives the phrase "voracious reader" a new, very literal meaning. Devon isn't human. She and others like her live off eating books, and they retain all the knowledge they consume. Book eaters are rare, and book eater girls are even rarer. Raised by the isolated, cultish Family, Devon is treated like a breakable princess and fed a steady diet of fairy tales in which the girls are always the damsels in distress. Devon's duty is to grow up and produce two children by two different husbands to ensure the survival of their species. Willful and stubborn in nature, Devon has always chafed under the Family's control--and when her first son is born not a book eater but a far more dangerous mind eater, she goes on the run to save the boy from the Family, who no longer want him. But to survive, she'll have to find a way to sate the hunger that plagues him, a hunger far more sinister and alien than her own. The fascinating magic system, impeccable and unusual worldbuilding, and well-shaded characters will keep readers riveted through every twist of this wild ride. Gothic fantasy fans will want to snap up this thrilling tale. (Aug.)
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