I’ve heard the name Garth Nix (which strangely becomes confused in my brain with Garth Brooks for some reason) over and over again, so a friend finally lent me the first in his Abhorsen trilogy.

Um…okay….yeah….that was….weird.

I haven’t had a book that made me pay attention like this in a long time. I mean, pay attention in a way because the world, the main characters, the assumptions about how the plot unfolds, all of it was just a little bit different from what i expected.

The story surrounds Sabriel, a necromancer whose father was an important part of keeping dead things dead and not walking among the living. She was brought up in Ancelstierre, a version of England I expected to be more like our own, but ended up very different, but was truly from the Old Kingdom, a place of magic on the other side of a big wall.

She goes across the wall one day when she receives her father’s sword and bells and knows he is in trouble.

Very good. My only quibble with the book was that I felt as estranged from the title character, Sabriel, as the other main characters felt. She was a puzzle, and I didn’t feel like I was let into her heart during the course of the book.

That doesn’t mean I won’t go out and read the sequels, though.