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Four and Twenty Blackbirds by Cherie Priest
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Four and Twenty Blackbirds (original 2003; edition 2005)

by Cherie Priest

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5982916,394 (3.85)58
Member:TheDivineOomba
Title:Four and Twenty Blackbirds
Authors:Cherie Priest
Info:
Collections:Read but unowned
Rating:***1/2
Tags:2013, Fantasy, From BookMooch, Given Away

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Four and Twenty Blackbirds by Cherie Priest (2003)

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» See also 58 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 29 (next | show all)
Lost interest in story
Maybe a YA book
Just too much dialogue ( )
  sogamonk | Nov 15, 2013 |
I didn't like this as much as I'd hoped to. I was ambivalent toward Boneshaker, but I really love Bloodshot and Hellbent (my girlfriend is in the doghouse a little bit for finding them boring), so I had high hopes about this one. I know it was her debut novel, but still. There's something compelling about this -- the mix of races involved, the use of the location, history, etc... But the narrative voice isn't that different from the later Raylene of the Chesire Red books (except she has less of an issue with OCD, and she rambles a bit less!).

Some bits of it were a bit creepy, but mostly the ghosts felt fairly benign. I want to know more of the whys and wherefores of this world, though, so I'm definitely sticking around: it may well grow on me. Lulu, for one thing, is an amazing character -- I hope she has more to do in future. ( )
  shanaqui | Aug 19, 2013 |
I got this book from the library on a whim - I was looking to see if they had any Christopher Priest books and walked away with a book by Cherie Priest instead.

It's rather Anne-Rice's-Witching-Hourish in that it's a "southern gothic" story about a girl who can see ghosts, and her mysterious ancestors. It's the first in a trilogy, and hopefully it won't all go downhill into a fiery disaster the way Anne Rice's trilogy did, because Four and Twenty Blackbirds is really awesome. It's mysterious and eerie and really keeps you guessing until the last page. What's really promising is that it's Cherie Priest's debut, and surely she can only get better from here. ( )
  BrookeAshley | May 23, 2013 |
To really understand this first book, I think I need to read the second one in the series. There was too much set-up here; I'm hoping the next book will distill the character down and allow the mystery/ghost story to happen a bit more naturally. ( )
  Krumbs | Mar 31, 2013 |
This is a wonderful first book by Cherie Priest. It has an interesting family history, a few terrifyingly scary moments, and a great leading lady who is interesting. It does suffer from first book syndrome - a simple tale with some threads not finished, others too involved. For example, the scariest part (for me) was not the main story, but a small side story about a girl named Cora. I also tended to get lost in the relatedness of Eden's extended family.

But, Eden is so awesome - she is a mixed race child, but that isn't really much of an issue for the majority of the book. Cherie Priest also didn't go with the stereotype of a poor black southern family. Eden's Aunt and Uncle are not red-neck, in fact, I would probably call them Seattle Style Hipster (to use another stereotype). It would have been all to easy to follow stereotypes. Its what makes this book interesting, rather than cliché.

As mentioned before, this story lacks a few important backstory. For example, why Eden's mother choose to spend time in a home for unstable teenagers or how she even met Eden's Father. There also is no explanation for how the Eden's Family and Eliza's Family know each other enough to have formed an opinion. These are holes that if filled, would have made this a great book. ( )
  TheDivineOomba | Jan 13, 2013 |
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Dedication
This book is dedicated to the kids in my life—
my little mortality markers,
Alex and Chelsea.
Now you two are getting old enough to hear
my really good spooky stories.
First words
"Draw me a picture of someplace you've been that you liked very much," Mrs. Patterson suggested, pronouncing each word with the firm, specific articulation peculiar to those who work with children.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0765313081, Paperback)

Although she was orphaned at birth, Eden Moore is never alone. Three dead women watch from the shadows, bound to protect her from harm. But in the woods a gunman waits, convinced that Eden is destined to follow her wicked great-grandfather--an African magician with the power to curse the living and raise the dead.

Now Eden must decipher the secret of the ghostly trio before a new enemy more dangerous than the fanatical assassin destroys what is left of her family. She will sift through lies in a Georgian ante-bellum mansion and climb through the haunted ruins of a 19th century hospital, desperately seeking the truth that will save her beloved aunt from the curse that threatens her life.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:26:31 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

"Although she was orphaned at birth, Eden Moore is never alone. Three dead women watch from the shadows, bound to protect her from harm. But outside her aunt's house a gunman waits, convinced that Eden is destined to follow her wicked great-grandfather, an African magician with the power to curse the living and raise the dead." -- Back cover.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 2 descriptions

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