The Compulsive Reader: Supernatural July: Prophecy of the Sisters by Michelle Zink and Interview

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Supernatural July: Prophecy of the Sisters by Michelle Zink and Interview

Michelle Zink's debut novel, Prophecy of the Sisters, wasn't technically supposed to be release until next month...but it's already available online, and I heard rumors of it appearing in bookstores! Yay! Check it out:

Lia Milthorpe has always had a quiet, predictable, and happy life. But when her father dies unexpectedly, leaving her, her twin sister Alice, and her younger brother Henry orphans, strange things begin to occur. A peculiar mark appears on Lia’s wrist, and Alice begins acting secretive. Lia's dreams become scarily real and threatening. It's not long before she discovers that she and Alice are a part of a dark prophecy that will firmly plant each sister on opposing sides and challenge every bit of loyalty, strength, and courage that Lia possesses in order to bring an end to the prophecy—before her sister can wreak havoc on the world.

From the very beginning of Prophecy of the Sisters, Lia is a convincing character; her hesitance to bring the strange circumstances that affect her to light and her motivations are true. Michelle Zink writes with startling clarity and vivid descriptions that establish a dark, mysterious, and brooding air that rivals that of the classics Rebecca and Jane Eyre. Her keen eye for detail and talent for revealing multitudes of aspects of the book without seeming didactic builds steady suspense throughout the entirety of the novel.

Lia's relationship with Alice is very fascinating, especially since many readers of the Young Adult genre are so accustomed to twin characters who are extremely close (as in Jacquelyn Mitchard's The Midnight Twins or Marissa Doyle's The Bewitching Season). It is complex and intriguing relationship, made even more so by the fact that Lia openly admits that she and Alice aren't especially close, but still she struggles with the idea that Alice may be evil and intent on doing her harm. It is the idea of one of nature's closest entities—twins—pitted against each other that really draw the readers in.

Another interesting aspect of Prophecy of the Sisters is Lia's romance with James, which is a real nice touch that adds a little light-heartedness to the story. At the same time, it would have been nice to know a little more about the beginning of their courtship, and it does seem that once Lia decides that if James knows the truth about her, he'll be in unnecessary danger, he does stay out of the picture, only to pop up once again towards the end. It will be interesting to discover his role in future books.

All in all, Zink has created an intense and riveting work brimming with myths, knowledge, and plenty of chills. Her characters are charming and strong, her otherworldly realms dangerous and eerie, and her plot entirely engrossing. Prophecy of the Sisters is overwhelmingly enthralling and engaging, with much of the same appeal as Libba Bray's A Great and Terrible Beauty. Readers shall rejoice at the debut of a stellar new voice with a very persuasive and unique point of view.

Cover Comments: I love this cover. I love the colors, and the statues and the eerie air that they exude--it sets the mood for the book perfectly. I think that this is the perfect cover for this book.

And here's Michelle!

What three words would you use to describe Prophecy of the Sisters?

Dark, Sensuous, Atmospheric

What elements make Prophecy of the Sisters unique?

I think it's a fresh take on the push and pull between siblings, because it highlights the shades of gray that often exist in real relationships. It's not easy to simply love or hate either of the sisters, because at times each of them frustrate, anger, and sadden you. Something that's also unique is the twist on the real legend of the fallen angels, or the biblical watchers, and the use of real demons in this way. For me, these things are the scariest of all, because it's not difficult to imagine the possibility that such supernatural forces exist in some form or another.

What supernatural book has influenced you the most?

There was a book I read as a teenager of about fourteen that involved astral travel, and I'm forever trying to remember the name of it! It involved a contemporary teen who discovered the ability to use astral travel, and it sparked a lifelong fascination with this mode of spiritual travel that many people believe actually exists. If anyone know which book I'm talking about, please remind me!

If you could have any supernatural power, what would it be and why?

I would love to be able to travel the astral plane the way that Lia does in Prophecy. How awesome would it be to leave your body safely at home any time of the day or night and travel to any place you wanted the world over?!

What supernatural book are you itching to read?

I am D-Y-I-N-G to read ANOTHER FAUST by Daniel and Dina Neyari. It sounds fantastic!

Thanks, Michelle!


Rachel said...

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Cecelia said...

Great review! Thanks for the interview as well. I've no idea which book she means (astral traveling?), but hope someone else will have read the same one and be able to help out.
I look forward to checking this out!

Rebecca said...

Prophecy of the Sisters sounds like such a great book.

Emily Ruth said...

it IS a great book... wonderful interview!

Michelle Zink said...

Thanks for the lovely review, Tirzah!

Mariah said...

Great review and it sounds like a great book!

Mari said...

I just put my name in to try and win a copy of this book on GoodRead's FirstReads. Keeping my fingers crossed.