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Bran Hambric: The Farfield Curse by Kaleb…

Bran Hambric: The Farfield Curse

by Kaleb Nation

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I don't always like comparing one book to another, but in this case it works. If you've enjoyed the Harry Potter books, and you're looking for another series that has magic, mystery and suspense, you need to try this book.

The plot starts out with a bang with Sewey (the man forced to adopt Bran after finding him in a bank vault) and Bran on the roof of the house trying to catch a thief. Instead they are attacked by some sort of creature that seems to want Bran. That starts Bran down the path to learning who is and who is mother was. The reader is brought along as he realizes what he thought is definitely not the truth and people are not who he thought they were. Bran learns that, in a city where it's out-lawed, he can do magic. I like how the magic was revealed - coming out when he needed it the most. Thankfully there were people to help him. But they didn't always give him all the answers or answers he wanted to hear. I did find some of this confusing because of the lack of details at this point. I think it was to make you relate to Bran - to feel what he did, but as a reader I needed a bit more .Plus there were a ton of details about the whole magically world, and I found myself lost now and again.

After the scene on the roof, the action builds nicely until a battle between Bran's past is fought. It is clear that this battle will solidly place Bran on one side or the other. It will help him learn the truth about him mother - the real truth and accept it. Nation did a nice job putting answers Bran needed within this final battle, it wasn't just a fight but one you needed to pay attention to if you wanted more of the story. That held my interest quite well! After this battle the book wraps up, but definitely sets up for further books in the series.

The book was enjoyable. I really liked Bran - a young man that could've been completely bitter about where his life was. Instead, as unexplained things start to happen to him, he jumps in and tries to come to terms with it. Not to say he's all fine and dandy with it. There is a scene where Bran runs away in the rain, that I found very understandable and real. This whole scene made me really feel for Bran and want to help him find answers and happiness. That is what will bring me back for future stories.

I do want to comment on a few other things in the story. The town Bran lives in has out-lawed all magic and gnomes - both accepted in the rest of the world. This was an interesting part of the plot because it made Bran's discovery even harder for him to accept - how could he have magic in a town that has laws against it?? The whole story line with the gnomes was interesting, but at times I wasn't sure why it was there. Maybe as the story progresses I'll learn. This was the same for the story-line of Rosie. As part of the family, she was more maid than anything, but she was Bran's only true friend in the house. I'm still not completely sure why it was included, but maybe it too will play a bigger role later on.

Final thought: Fun read and one to give to Harry Potter lovers that are looking for something new to read
Best stick-with-you image: When Sewey meets the gnome - you just need to read the book to know why!
Best for ages: 9ish-14 This one is more tween than teen
  MrsBookOwl | Sep 14, 2013 |
promised lots of action and suspense but poorly written
  lindap69 | Apr 5, 2013 |
I think this is an addable book for our library collection. Although it is not as good as Harry Potter or Charlie Bone, I think the series will improve with time (or it could go the way of Eragon, I suppose.) I think he could use a better editor because quite often the first quotation mark to signify a character speaking is nonexistent. I think the better editor could have also addressed some of the other problems expressed in the SLJ and Kirkus reviews. ( )
  scote23 | Mar 30, 2013 |
Action, intrigue, magic and adventure – this one’s got it all! Fourteen year-old Bran was found inside a locked bank vault when he was six with no memory of his previous life. Now, there are strange creatures, mysterious black vans, a strange girl at a bookstore and the mystery of his parents to solve. Living in the city of Dunce with his obnoxious foster family, Bran is not your ordinary Duncelander. The author began writing this story when he was fourteen. Dissed by some reviewers for being influenced by Harry Potter, fans of that series may enjoy the first novel in Nation’s planned six novel series. Kirkus states the author “has a knack for crafting violent, quickly paced chases and fights” and to “look for better work down the line.” The second novel in the series The Specter Key was released in October 2010.--SJ Cournoyer
  LomiraQCLibrary | Jul 4, 2012 |
An excellent start to a series. In a lot of ways, it reminded me of Harry Potter, but at the same time, this story about a teenage mage is its own fantasy world. It's been a very long time since I read this book so I don't remember it too well, but I remember that I loved it and I cannot wait to read The Specter Key. ( )
  simply00complex | Jun 9, 2011 |
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To Jaden and Brendan and Maddi, who influenced this book most of all.
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The night was cold and dead, and so felt Clarence's heart.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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[From back cover]:  Bran Hambric was found alone in a locked bank vault when he was six years old.  He doesn't have a clue how he got there, or any memory of his past.  There's only one explanation: Magic.  But magic is outlawed in the Great and Glorious City of Dunce.  Eight years later, a twisted, hissing creature confronts Bran and his foster father, Sewey, on their rooftop.  Sewey believes it's a gnome, but not Bran.  (Sewey isn't the brightest Duncelander to begin with.)  Bran soon discovers that whatever leapt onto his roof is connected to the mother he never knew . . . and that Bran himself is the missing link in a plot so secret and evil that those behind it will stop at nothing to hunt him down.  Armed with wands and weapons, Bran's enemies are about to attack - with all the power of a horrible curse and a terrible crime.  Magic won't be the only law broken in the City of Dunce . . . .
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Very strange occurrences have long surrounded fourteen-year-old Bran, who learns of his link to a curse created by his murdered mother and strives to make things right, hindered by the ban on magic in the city of Dunce and pursued by his mother's former masters.… (more)

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Average: (3.37)
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Sourcebooks Jabberwocky

2 editions of this book were published by Sourcebooks Jabberwocky.

Editions: 1402218575, 1402243979

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