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Catherine Banner

Catherine Banner fantasy author(1989- )
Catherine Banner was born in Cambridge in 1989 and began writing at the age of fourteen. She has published a trilogy of young adult novels. She studied English at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, and has worked as a teacher in schools in the UK. The House at the Edge of Night is her debut adult novel. She lives in Turin, Italy, with her husband.
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The Last Descendants

The Last Descendants — (2008-2015) Publisher: FIFTEEN-YEAR-OLD LEO NORTH’S prospects in life are limited. He attends military school, lives with his fearful grandmother, and looks after his brother Stirling. He resists his innate powers, because those who demonstrate any sort of magical ability are considered enemies of the state. But when he finds a blank book in the snow, his typical indifference melts away. From the first moment he touches the book, he senses its strange power. Passages start to appear on the pages — revealing family secrets, telling the history of Malonia, and uncovering the story of Ryan and Anna, two teens from a parallel universe. When Leo’s seemingly narrow path takes an unexpected tragic turn, he finds himself on a journey from which he can never really return. And, as he slowly begins to lose touch with reality, Ryan and Anna’s story comes to the forefront. Their idyllic summer romance — seemingly worlds away from Leo — has everything to do with Malonia.

Catherine Banner The Last Descendants 1. The Eyes of a King 2. Voices in the DarkCatherine Banner The Last Descendants 1. The Eyes of a King 2. Voices in the Dark

The Eyes of a King: Would you like some gloom with that?

The Eyes of a King by Catherine Banner

"All those years, I thought I was unhappy. I don't think anymore that I was," Leo reflects early in The Eyes of a King, looking back on his teenage self.

Now, after 250 pages of military dictatorship, abusive teachers, missing parents, Leo being sick, Leo’s little brother being sick, kids getting drafted into the army, and heavy-handed foreshadowing of a tragic event that happens around the 225-page mark, and Leo brooding about all of these things? If this is Leo North when he’s happy, I don’t want to read on to see just how unhappy he gets, so I stopped.

Don’t get me wrong. I read all kinds of literature in which terrible things happen. I’m a George R.R. Martin fan, for crying out loud, and we all know how wantonly he slaughters his characters. In Martin... Read More