The Astrologer's Daughter by Rebecca Lim
|The Astrologer's Daughter by Rebecca Lim
|Reviewer: Kerry King
|Summary: Aimed at the Young Adult in your life, The Astrologer's Daughter is the story of Avicenna Crowe and the search for her astrologer mother, Joanne. Joanne is gifted with predictive powers and an uncanny knack for being spot on. With that kind of gift comes an assortment of trouble - stalkers and manic obsessives to name just two but also knowing the time and manner in which you are going to meet your own end. Would you want to know how long your life would span, even if you could?
|Date: July 2015
|Publisher: Text Publishing Company
|External links: Author's website
Horary Astrology is an ancient branch of horoscopic astrology in which an astrologer attempts to answer a question asked at an exact time by the construction of a horoscope around it. Clear as mud? Yes, me too. Suffice to say, an horary astrologer would have to be a very gifted individual indeed and Avicenna Crowe's mother, Joanne, is just such an astrologer.
In fact, Joanne's predictive powers have been uncannily exact her whole life and with this a gift there follows an assortment of negatives; stalkers and maniacally obsessed clients at the bad end of the scale to, well, worse. Sometimes much worse; the Crowes have found themselves moving house many, many times. Avicenna is a girl used to taking life in her stride. Accustomed to being the new girl and she is used to the stares that accompany her scarred face, the result of a house fire that claimed the life of her father. Tolerant of the teasing from her classmates and in particular, Simon Thorn, who seems to go out of his way to get in Avicenna's. But she also knows life would be even more complicated if anyone knew she had her mother's gift. So she keeps that facet of her persona quiet until Joanna goes missing. Then the rulebook goes out of the window.
The blurb says that this is a mystery/thriller/love story and I'd have to say that's a fairly decent synopsis of the plot line. However, it would also be fair to say that this story is so much more than that. By the time you reach your late teens, you think you know your parent or parents, but really all you know to be true is what they or your grandparents have told you about them. What if they have secrets that are so dark and deep that they have never been brought to the light of day, never mind shared or divulged? What if your mother disappeared and you discover that you really didn't know her at all?
It's a great question, isn't it? So there you have the mystery/thriller; in peeling away the onion-like layers of Joanne and her life and family we discover that all is not as it might be and as for the love story part, well it's delightfully awkward and very much unconventional. We're talking about a girl whose face is burn scarred so in the first place, the love interest is going to have to have a little more depth to see the person underneath the face. I liked that about this story. There was also considerably more to Simon that met the eye. Anyway, the entire characterisation of Avicenna (bi-racial Chinese, curvy with actual boobs and the aforementioned burn scarring to half of her face) was a pleasing curveball away from the slender, pretty, petite and brainy young adult fiction heroines, because let's face it, there's probably not a teen on the planet that hasn't at one time or another looked in the mirror and seen a beast with bad hair, whether there is one there or not!
The story and all of the characters served to you in The Astrologer's Daughter have dimension and purpose and they are incredibly likeable, so in all I found this book particularly hard to put down.
Rebecca Lim has given us a thought-provoking mystery that may or may not have a 'happy ending'. You really do have to make of the conclusion what you will. It's cleverly done and it will stay with you for a while - possibly longer than it takes you to Google Horary Astrology!
In summary you must buy this book. Get it for your Young Adult, or recommend it to them at least, and when they are done, read it yourself. I'm giving it five stars because it is more than worthy.
The Astrologer's Daughter is well deserving of your pocket money and if you think you might like to take a look, you may likely enjoy Night Owls by Jenn Bennett because we loved it.
Similarly may we suggest you take a wander through the pages of Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley as the connection between the Australian setting of The Astrologer's Daughter and the subject matter of Night Owls is irresistible as a trio of books to take on holiday.
Finally our huge thanks to the kind folks at Text Publishing for sending us this copy for review.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Astrologer's Daughter by Rebecca Lim at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Astrologer's Daughter by Rebecca Lim at Amazon.com.
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