3-Sentence summary: Beka Cooper is a new trainee (Puppy) in the proto-police force known as the Provost’s Guard, or the Dogs. Almost immediately after joining up, she gets caught up in two big cases, one involving multiple murders to protect the whereabouts of a vein of extremely valuable fire opals, and the other involving a mysterious child killer known as the Shadow Snake. It’s tough going for Beka, but she has a secret: she can hear the voices of the dead.
Six word review: Pierce rocks a new writing style.
I started reading because: Tamora Pierce is covering new territory with this book, as it is not only narrated differently (first person past tense, in the form of a journal, instead of third person omniscient past tense), but it stars a non-noble heroine, and is a detective story (although it doesn’t skimp on the action). I wanted to see how she did with it.
I kept reading because: She did great. It’s a very engaging read, with an awesome heroine, an interesting plot, and diverse and fleshed out supporting characters.
I loved: The chemistry between the characters, especially Beka and her trainers Goodwin and Tunstall.
I hated: Well, I don’t really hate anything, but for someone trained to rely on her memory as much as possible and is writing the story as a memory exercise, Beka sure has trouble remembering plot points that aren’t supposed to be revealed yet.
I couldn’t get enough of: Beka and Rosto. Those two have such fun chemistry.
If the lead character was in a high school yearbook, she would be voted most likely to: Catch a crime lord.
On a deserted island, the main character would probably: Immediately start working on a way to get out. She’s a city girl at heart, and practical enough to know that she doesn’t have the right survival skills.