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Ascendant by Diana Peterfreund
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Ascendant (2010)

by Diana Peterfreund

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Showing 1-5 of 32 (next | show all)
Astrid Llewellyn was raised by a mother obsessed with unicorns. But to hear her tell it, unicorns aren't the fluffy, innocent creatures of myth, but savage, blood-thirsty monsters. And to everyone's surprise, it turns out Astrid's mother was right. The unicorns' last hidden preserve has been lost, and now they're out into the world again. And they're hungry for fresh meat.

Luckily, it turns out that Astrid really has inherited unicorn hunting abilities. She and a small group of other young women band together. But their funds are low, public opinion on them is split (because despite their best efforts, the unicorn attack rate continues to rise) and none of them are completely committed to the painful and short life of a hunter.

Astrid wants to be a doctor someday, but she's also one of the few people who can defeat or even control unicorns. She feels a duty to postpone her education and personal ambitions in order to find a solution to the unicorn problem, but it's a struggle. I like Astrid--her interest in medicine feels genuine, not just a slapped-on bit of characterization, and her moral quandries were actually difficult decisions. The combat scenes are exciting but easy to understand, and the supporting cast is unique and interesting. But overall, the first half of the book is pretty pedestrian.

Then Astrid gets hurt. In fact, she's injured so badly that only the superpowers hunters get from being in the presence of unicorns give her even a semblance of her former self. Astrid's dream of becoming a doctor is shattered--and so is her ability to be a hunter. Without those two facets, Astrid is at a lost to how to think of herself, or what to do with her life. Astrid is eventually offered a potential cure, but (in an incredibly gutsy and morally righteous move) doesn't take it. Instead, she travels the world returning the cure to those it was stolen from, so they can choose what to do with it. The last third of the book is shattering but excellent. ( )
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
This book felt a little bit all over the place. I was interested but I couldn't get into it the way that I got into the first one. Astrid goes to live and work at Gordian which is now being run by Isabeau, Martin Jager's wife. The whole time she was there I basically kept waiting for the catch, which came much later in the book then I thought it would. I was extremely surprised to see ho they handled Astrid's injury. I am wondering how they are planning on making the next book work. I also wanted them to do more to help Corey. This book kind of felt like Astrid and the cloisters are just a giant mess. It will be itneresting to see where things go in the next book. ( )
  Rosa.Mill | Nov 21, 2015 |
This book felt a little bit all over the place. I was interested but I couldn't get into it the way that I got into the first one. Astrid goes to live and work at Gordian which is now being run by Isabeau, Martin Jager's wife. The whole time she was there I basically kept waiting for the catch, which came much later in the book then I thought it would. I was extremely surprised to see ho they handled Astrid's injury. I am wondering how they are planning on making the next book work. I also wanted them to do more to help Corey. This book kind of felt like Astrid and the cloisters are just a giant mess. It will be itneresting to see where things go in the next book. ( )
  Rosa.Mill | Nov 21, 2015 |
This book felt a little bit all over the place. I was interested but I couldn't get into it the way that I got into the first one. Astrid goes to live and work at Gordian which is now being run by Isabeau, Martin Jager's wife. The whole time she was there I basically kept waiting for the catch, which came much later in the book then I thought it would. I was extremely surprised to see ho they handled Astrid's injury. I am wondering how they are planning on making the next book work. I also wanted them to do more to help Corey. This book kind of felt like Astrid and the cloisters are just a giant mess. It will be itneresting to see where things go in the next book. ( )
  Rosa.Mill | Nov 21, 2015 |
This book felt a little bit all over the place. I was interested but I couldn't get into it the way that I got into the first one. Astrid goes to live and work at Gordian which is now being run by Isabeau, Martin Jager's wife. The whole time she was there I basically kept waiting for the catch, which came much later in the book then I thought it would. I was extremely surprised to see ho they handled Astrid's injury. I am wondering how they are planning on making the next book work. I also wanted them to do more to help Corey. This book kind of felt like Astrid and the cloisters are just a giant mess. It will be itneresting to see where things go in the next book. ( )
  Rosa.Mill | Nov 21, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 32 (next | show all)
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For my father, who taught me about science and strong women
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In ancient times, royalty hunted unicorns for sport.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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When sixteen-year-old Astrid Llewellyn, now a fully-trained unicorn hunter, joins the quest to discover The Remedy at a laboratory in the French countryside, she begins to question her love for Giovanni, her loyalty to the Cloisters, and even her duty as a hunter.… (more)

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