Remember how it felt to play in the woods or fields by your childhood home and create an elaborate fantasy game? All your friends would gather for a special mission to save the world or set off on an adventure. The Children of Darkness is the first book in The Seekers series, and it pulled me right back to my own would-be childhood adventures, which helped me relate to the setting and the characters.
It’s soon apparent this isn’t the world of my childhood, though. Orah, Nathaniel and Thomas have been friends since birth; the three have played games together, meeting at the NOT tree, where they have a fort in the woods that Nathaniel’s father made for them, since they were kids. They live in the time of light, in a post-apocalyptic society established after the fall of darkness, and every year when as children come of age one in three are taken away to the Temple for a teaching.
After the teaching, they’re never the same, and the local villagers secretly grumble about the Temple and the teachings. When Thomas is taken and kept until he is forced to betray his friends, it sets in motion a chain of events. Orah is taken for a teaching, and an act of courage from Nathaniel to save Orah leads to him discovering that the world of the Temple of Light may not be built on truth. The three friends pursue a quest that threatens their lives, but may change their world forever.
The Children of Darkness is broken into four parts, covering the four stages of the friends’ progress on their journey to truth. Will a broken Thomas heal or will he betray his friends again? Will their families, under threat of stoning, stand by them or turn against them? These are some of the questions that drive the story to the final pages.
This book is recommended for young adults, and for those who are seeking dystopian adventure stories that are clean. There’s no sex, little violence, and readers will be confronted more with questions about heroism and obedience. Those who are looking for more intense action and suspense may prefer a different series.
The Rating3.5 Stars (out of 5): Pretty good. For the right audience, this could be great. Sure, there were some issues, but it was still worth the read.
The Pros & ConsPros: Page Turner, Strong World-Building
The ReviewerSandra Ruttan‘s website.
Highly recommended. I really enjoyed the story and the friendship, and for a book titled The Children of Darkness, it was a story that seemed to be underscored with hope. There are a few nitpicky writing things that keep this story from scoring higher, such as shifts in the spelling of gray to grey, formatting issues with the Kindle file, some point of view shifts, and some odd phrasing that renders the meaning unclear, such as ‘she startled to a doorway’, but in spite of that, the story was compelling and that overshadowed the occasional technical shortcomings in the writing and formatting.
Read The Children of Darkness (The Seekers Book 1)
Sandra Ruttan‘s website.