Kushiel's Avatar Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Kushiel's Avatar

Tor, Apr 2003, 27.95, 702 pp.
ISBN: 0312872402

"Anguisette" Comtesse Phedre has for the most part over the past decade lived in domestic tranquillity with her loyal swordsman Joscelin though she also meets the demands of her demi-gods to feel pain when making love by annually taking on a few “lovers”. However, her former lover and rival, Melisande, imprisoned in a temple for an unsuccessful coup, asks Phedre for help. Melisande's son, Imriel vanished. If Phèdre rescues Imriel, Melisande will provide the location of the lost tribe of Dan, whose elders reportedly know the hidden Name.
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Phèdre and Joscelin quickly learn that slavers heading south abducted Imriel. They follow the trail to the Pharaoh of Menekhet who informs them that the lad was taken to the nightmarish Drujan, headed by The Conqueror of Death and bloody priests who kill, seemingly by magic, for any slight. Imriel is the sacrifice that authenticates the Conqueror's dominance. Phèdre knows she needs to get inside so she arranges for Joscelin to sell her to the Conqueror of Death as a sex slave.

The latest Kushiel tale is fantasy at its most powerfully visual best. The story line is colorful as the audience journeys with the heroine on her trek to what is the equivalent of Africa. The lead protagonists as expected are complete individuals so that fans understand their motives and how each interacts with others in adventurous scenarios while the secondary characters appear so authentic that the depth of the plot is as deep as a tale seemingly can become. Though better if read after the first two novels, KUSHIEL'S AVATAR could stand-alone to the delight of an appreciative genre.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of Kushiel's Avatar

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Descript. of chases or violence 10%planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 40%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 30%Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places 20% Tone of book    -   suspenseful (sophisticated fear) FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   fantasy world/fantasy past Spying & Investigations    -   Yes What is main char. doing?    -   rescue mission/escape from confinement Repressive society story    -   Yes Repressive because:    -   controls your sex Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Religious overtones?    -   Yes

Main Character

Identity:    -   Female Profession/status:    -   Prince/Nobleman/King Age:    -   20's-30's


Earth setting:    -   during "Tolkien" (fairytime) times Takes place on Earth?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment How much dialogue?    -   significantly more dialog than descript

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Jacqueline Carey Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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