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The Oracle Betrayed: Book One of the Oracle Prophecies

by Catherine Fisher

Published by U.S. edition: Greenwillow / HarperCollins, 2004
341 pages
ISBN: 0-06-057157-8

Age 13 and older

As the youngest, Mirany is the least of the Nine who serve the god, but she appreciates the privileges of her position: light duties, good food, plenty of water. An astute observer of the political manipulations of those above her, Mirany doubts that her religion is anything more than a façade used by temple rulers and military leaders to further their own agendas. Her unspoken cynicism crumbles when the god speaks to her, drawing her into a desperate struggle for control. Mirany discovers unlikely allies in a young scribe and a drunken musician, and the three work together to install a legitimate leader before their enemies bring their own candidate to power. This first book in a planned trilogy offers a richly imagined society, based on elements drawn from ancient Greek and Egyptian cultures. Taut pacing and plenty of action are well balanced with provocative questions about faith, belief, and moral responsibility. Although this volume succeeds as a stand-alone fantasy, its sudden ending will undoubtedly whet appetites for the rest of Mirany's story. (MVL) ©2004 Cooperative Children's Book Center

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