Review: The Book of Whispers by Kimberley Starr

Author: Kimberley Starr
Publisher: Text Publishing
Publication Date: October 3rd 2016
Source: ebook (given by Netgalley)


Tuscany, 1096 AD. Luca, young heir to the title of Conte de Falconi, sees demons. Since no one else can see them, Luca must keep quiet about what he sees.
Luca also has dreams—dreams that sometimes predict the future. Luca sees his father murdered in one such dream and vows to stop it coming true. Even if he has to go against his father’s wishes and follow him on the great pilgrimage to capture the Holy Lands.
When Luca is given an ancient book that holds some inscrutable power, he knows he’s been thrown into an adventure that will lead to places beyond his understanding. But with the help of Suzan, the beautiful girl he rescues from the desert, he will realise his true quest: to defeat the forces of man and demon that wish to destroy the world

*The publisher provided this book in exchange for an honest review through NetGalley.*
We are in the middle of the Crusades. In Tuscany, Luca, heir to the Conte de Falconi, can see demons, they are attached to things and some of them are really really scary but he must not say anything or else people will think he is crazy.
Besides seeing demons, Luca also has dreams: he dreams of things that are going to happen in the future. When Luca witnesses his father's murder in his dreams he decides to go against his wishes and follow him to the great pilgrimage whose objective is to reconquest the Holy Lands.
After being given an ancient, maybe magic, book Luca discover that there may be some truth to what he sees and maybe he's not the only one. With the help of Suzan, a beautiful girl he has met during the journey, he must unveil and complete his quest: to defeat the forces of demons and the man that wants to help them destroy the world.
I have to admit that, opening up this book, I was not expecting what I actually got: an amazing adventure during the crusades that crosses the fates of two very peculiar people. Yes, I am talking about Luca and Suzan. Even though I have never studied the crusades I feel like the author was able to characterize and set the environment in a way that allows even the most unsuspecting of readers to get immersed in the story. One of the things the author did not forget was the bloody and dark side of the quest: the deaths, the sieges, the poverty, the unsuspecting people under the hands of ambitious rulers, etc.
One of my favourite parts of the plot was Suzan's backstory and the overall mystery that she brings to the narrative. In a world infested by demons, she is able to bring a little bit of light and magic (good magic) as well as make you wonder about who she really is. Luca is the typical noble son that actually has good intentions but that has an overly unrealistic view of the world: he has never seen the horrors of war, he is somewhat blind to the world's ugliness. Besides all this, he knows he can only trust himself, or people will think he is crazy. All of this makes it more wonderful to watch the journey of two souls that are used to not trust anyone and start to learn to trust each other and work as a team, even in the darkest of times.
I think this is a wonderful read for everyone, everyone can take some lessons from this wonderfully crafted story. One thought remains with me after reading this book: even in the darkest and ugliest of places/times it is possible to catch a glimpse of light, you just have to believe it exists and work to find it.

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