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‘We need the literature of other countries to expand our
horizons and stimulate our ideas. Without it, we are not only
diminished, we are starved’
(The Times, Magnus Linklater 29/06/05)
Shamer's Signet (The)
by Lene Kaaberbol
Age Range: 12+
This is the second Shamer novel after The Shamer’s Daughter. Dina has inherited the Shamer’s gift from her mother – one look into her eyes and no one can mask their guilt or hide their shame. Shamers are seen as social outcasts and this makes the gift seem like a curse to eleven-year old Dina. A series of four novels follow the lives of the Tonerre family as they are constantly pitched into danger and adventure.
The Shamer’s Signet sees Dina and her mother tricked into going with the wicked Valdracu’s men and her brother, Davin, sets off in hot-headed pursuit of the man he believes, wrongly, to be responsible. Although Dina and her mother escape and a clan war is narrowly averted, the ingenious Valdracu is successful in his second attempt. Trapped and held prisoner, Dina is forced to use her gift as a weapon – if she does not, Valdracu threatens to kill her companion, a grandson of one of the clans. Davin becomes her only hope of escape.
Lene Kaaberbol is an excellent storyteller and translator and these Shamer novels have created an exciting world, on the edge of civilisation, magic and mystery. The harsh life of the Highlands with its rival clans and villains shows a world where those that manipulate the truth are afraid of the gifted few that can see the truth and are able to expose them.
The three other books in the series are The Shamer's Daughter, The Serpent Gift and The Shamer’s War (Outside In: Children’s Books in Translation, Milet, 2005)