It's a coming-of-age storyline yet its quite complex. The construction and imagery of this new world is subtle and believably alien, the characters true and the events dramatic, graphic and surprising. We journey with Todd as he is forced to leave his home, discover the cause of the quiet within the "noise" and face his many difficulties with Manchee but without vital knowledge. There are satisfyingly horrible "baddies" and events, and very likeable "goodies" in the story. We travel at a good clip with no dull or wasted places and just when we think its going to work out ok for him... we are left teetering.. wait! There's another book in the trilogy. Good!
The concept of a world where the thoughts of men and animals are audible and noisy intrigued me, the sample got me with Humphrey Bower's voicing of Manchee the dog's; "Need a poo Todd", "Poo. Poo Todd." It made me laugh because its just how your dog WOULD say it. He has done an exemplary job of narration and disappears into the characters and story smoothly and perfectly as an ideal narrator should.
There's something of the flavour of the Chronicles Of Ancient Darkness series by Michelle Paver although Patrick Ness's style is different of course, and I believe this book is suitable for the same age-group of early teens up.
I highly recommend both series no matter what your age.
This book is for "young adults" and although I am not one, I enjoyed this story.
The concept is interesting in that we travel to an alternative world and back again thanks to the Cornerstone.
We have here the makings of any good book: the battle between good and evil; between conscience and convenience; a gentle romance and a bit of magic to flavor the story.
The narrator sounds young and that's all to the good as it suits the story, he has the ability to create appropriate voices to match the characters and does it well. If, like me, you enjoyed the Harry Potter books, although not of that scale, you'll still find this book is worth a listen, and its one you can share with your kids.