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Dark Whispers (Unicorn Chronicles) by Bruce Coville
Cover Artist: Petar Meseldzija
Review by Ellen Russell
Scholastic Mass Market Paperback  ISBN/ITEM#: 9780590459525
Date: 01 February 2010 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /

Dark Whispers is a fast-paced continuation for the exciting young adult fantasy series, The Unicorn Chronicles. Set in the magical realm of Luster, to which the unicorns fled when it became too unsafe to stay on Earth, this novel begins to tie together all of the plot threads that weave through the first two novels.

Dark Whispers follows Cara Hunter, a girl caught between two worlds, unsure of where her future will lead, but certain that she wants to help the unicorns in their struggle with Beloved, a woman who seeks to avenge an ancient wound which she blames on the unicorns. It also follows her father, Ian Hunter, once an enemy of the unicorns, now trying to free his wife, Martha, from imprisonment by Beloved. The novel also chronicles the adventures of Nedzik, a delver (a creature evolved from dwarves), who grapples with his loyalty to his fellow delvers and his sense that their alliance with Beloved in her war on the unicorns is morally wrong.

As Beloved's attack inches ever closer, it is a race against time for Cara and her friends: a dwarf, a mage, a gryphon, and several unicorns, to uncover the mystery of "The Whisperer", which may hold the key to winning the war against Beloved. However, with delvers, centaurs, and a mysterious force working against them, Cara and her friends must employ all of their resources in an attempt to tip the balance in favor of the unicorns.

If you have not read the first two books in the series: Into the Land of the Unicorns and Song of the Wanderer, I would recommend that you do so before diving into Dark Whispers, which relies somewhat heavily on knowledge of characters and previous events. However, both of these books are also excellent, so it is worth the time and effort. Dark Whispers also requires the reader to be able to keep track of many different plot threads at once. However, they all come together at the gripping, cliffhanger ending, which will leave you yearning for the publication of the next book.

Dark Whispers does an excellent job of leading up to what will definitely be an engaging and satisfying conclusion in the upcoming The Last Hunt.

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