15 May, 2012


Title: Princes
Author: Sonya Hartnett
Genre: Fiction
Audience: Young Adult
Format: Book - Library

From Goodreads: In a dilapidated mansion overrun by rats, Indigo and Ravel Kesby have gone to war. Identical twins, their two selves have gradually entwined until they have become all but interchangeable: no one can tell them apart. But when one twin attempts to sever the ties to his brother, their insular world quickly disintegrates into madness, treachery, and violence. As the story sweeps toward a shocking and inexorable conclusion, identity becomes a malleable weapon that will ultimately differentiate brother from brother.
 Sleeping Dogs was, for me, the first book where Hartnett started to excel. Her earlier books hinted at the ability that was there, but never really quite hit the mark. After Sleeping Dogs, came Devil Latch and it was a fantastic follow up. Although I have read much of Hartnett’s work, I’d never read The Devil Latch before. I’m so glad that I have now. To start you are not sure if the book is a gothic horror or a supernatural type book. I started off thinking that maybe Hartnett was way ahead of her time (it was published in 1996) with the vampire thing. But in the end, you realise it’s something completely different. The book shows how easy it can be to be drawn into someone else’s fantasy and the dangers of doing so. Next up by Hartnett, Black Fox!

What I thought: So I went looking for the last Hartnett book I read and it was August last year! Nine months ago!! That is so not cool!
Anyway, Princes is was perfect Hartnett. Indigo and Ravel are caught in their own world within the walls of their mansion. Hartnett draws you in until you can feel the suffocation of one twin by another. You know who the evil one is, you know who is being controlled and who is controlling. You are sure. And then you're not sure...everything that was certain isn't. You can feel the house shift and move as the dynamics between the twins shift and move. Part of the brilliance of this book is the fact that there are only two characters, but it is never stilted, never slow or ponderous. In fact it wasn't until the end that I realised apart from a few mentions of others, some who you are not sure exist at all, Indigo and Ravel are the only characters. As always, Hartnett is succinct - Princes only runs to 138 pages - once again part of her brilliance.

Challenges: Aussie Author Challenge