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Sampson, Fay. THEM.

SAMPSON, Fay. THEM. Trafalgar Square. 254p. c2003.0-7459-4670-4. $8.95. J

Berlewen Trethevy is a noble; Honesty Olds is her servant. By the rules of Trethevy Castle, Honesty isn't even allowed to be seen by Berlewen or her family. But the Trethevy and Olds families were put in their positions by THEM, the hated overlords of this alternate-reality England. Only THEY are allowed to use cars and guns, while the rest of the population is kept in a state of medieval subjugation. When Berlewen receives a summons from THEM, and her enkenethal (an intelligent dog-like creature hunted almost to extinction by THEM) attacks the messenger, Berlewen is forced to flee her home with Honesty. The two girls travel to the island of Glastonbury in search of the legendary Prince who will bring about the downfall of THEM and lead his people into freedom.

At its best, this is a suspenseful adventure, strengthened by the growing relationship between the two girls. Unfortunately the book loses its focus and power at the end, when the heroes are saved by a deus ex machina fierce dragon/earth-goddess won over by Berlewen's ability to show love for her enemies. Them will appeal to junior high students (the heroines are in that age bracket), but there are many scenes of real terror and violence. Samantha Musher, Lib. Science Student, Simmons College, Boston, MA
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Copyright 2004, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Author:Musher, Samantha
Article Type:Book Review
Date:May 1, 2004
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