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Quill and Quire book of the year.

December 2, 2013

Guys. *Quill & Quire* and me, we're in LUV. We're gonna get matching tattoos.

 

But seriously -- the December issue came to my house the other day. It had "Best Books of 2013: the 15 Titles that Mattered" emblazoned on the front as if they'd hired a time-travelling sign painter. (Time-travelling sign painters are very much of the moment.) "Are you in that one?" asked James."I wouldn't think so. I've been in three already this year...."

 

(If you're keeping track, that covers the "the most anticipated books of the fall" piece, the actual review, and the time in October when the put me on the COVER. Yowsa.)

 

But we flipped through it anyway, of course, and there -- THERE -- were the top five titles for young readers. Just two YAs. One of them was Sorrow's Knot. There was jumping up and down at my house! The eight year old faked a bit of blasée, but the rest of us were knocked over. Here's what they have to say:

 

You'd be forgiven for thinking we have a crush on Erin Bow (the author herself made a comment to this effect after she was featured on Q&Q's October cover). But if we do, we're not alone. The Kitchener, Ontario, author inspires in readers the kind of cultish devotion that seems particular to fantasy, science-fiction, and other genres. After the success of her debut, 2010's *Plain Kate*, expectations were running high for her follow-up. Happily, *Sorrow's Knot* delivers.

 

Written with the same overtone of mystical intensity, Bow's sophomore effort is a coming-of-age story steeped in magic. Her characters - protagonist Otter, in particular - are so fully fleshed out that their voices leap from the page, their joy and despair felt on a visceral level. Perhaps the most impressive thing about *Sorrow's Knot* is that, although darkness an death cast shadows on every page, there is lightness and hope in the mix as well.

 

*Plain Kate* may have heralded Bow's arrival on the YA scene, but *Sorrow's Knot* leaves no doubt that the author is here to stay.>

 

I'm telling you guys. Matching. Tattoos.

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