From the Publisher
“Katniss and Tris would approve.”—TeenVogue.com
"This book will not disappoint."-USAToday.com
"Fans of Veronica Roth’s Divergent, Marie Lu’s Legend, and Suzanne Collins’s The Hunger Games series: your next obsession has arrived."-School Library Journal
"In this powerful beginning to a complex family saga...Dayton excels at creating memorable characters."-Publishers Weekly
“[A] genre-blending sci-fi, fantasy…[with] action-packed scenes.”—Booklist
"Secrets, danger, and romance meet in this unforgettable epic fantasy." —Kami Garcia, #1 New York Times bestselling coauthor of Beautiful Creatures & author of Unbreakable
"A tightly-woven, action-packed story of survivial and adventure, Seeker is perfect for fans of Game of Thrones." —Tahereh Mafi, author of the New York Times bestselling Shatter Me series
In this powerful beginning to a complex family saga, 15-year-old Quin Kincaid, her biracial cousin Shinobu MacBain, and their friend John Hart train on the Kincaid family’s Scottish estate to become Seekers, warriors who slip through space and time. Historically, Seekers used their powers and weapons—chameleon whipswords and nightmarish, sanity-stripping disruptors—to right wrongs. When Quin and Shinobu venture on their first mission, they find they’re destined to be assassins for Quin’s brutal, manipulative father. The novel’s appeal lies less in the slightly futuristic, slightly alternate-history setting, than in the way the nascent Seekers cope with betrayal: Quin and Shinobu flee to Hong Kong, where Quin chooses a path of therapeutic amnesia, and Shinobu plunges into drug use and dangerous salvage diving. Meanwhile, John risks becoming what he most despises as he seeks revenge and possession of his family’s “athame,” the tool that allows Seekers to cut through the fabric of reality. Worldbuilding can be sketchy, but Dayton (Resurrection) excels at creating memorable characters, among them Maud, the “Young Dread,” an ageless child whose mysterious clan is linked to the Seekers. Ages 14–up. Agent: Jodi Reamer, Writers House. (Feb.)
Children's Literature - Lois Rubin Gross
Not exactly a fantasy and not exactly an adventure story, this is another book with a trio of adversaries fighting for possession of a powerful tool, the athame. Quin, John, and Shinobu are three apprentice Seekers, warriors with the power to traverse time in a non-lineal manner. Quin, a young woman with a birthright of power and violence, believes she is in love with John, an outcast in their class of warriors. Shinobu, a Japanese-Scottish hybrid, represses his love for Quin thinking that it is unrequited. John straddles the line between evil and inner voices that try to teach him restraint. It is not to be. Despite his appeal to Quin, John is trying to reclaim his family’s ownership of an athame which will guarantee the power and wealth that is slipping through his family’s fingers. His grandfather, Gavin, rules the family’s empire from an airship above London. His many times great grandmother, Maggie, is slowly poisoning Gavin into dementia. The intermingling of family dynasties in France, Scotland, and Hong Kong are complexly woven into a story that jumps forward and backward through time in an astounding and occasionally confusing way. Nevertheless, this is a good story and it is well told. Clearly there are more chapters to come as Shinobu and Quin unite against John in a quest to acquire all of the athames on earth and, thus, control the power of the stone daggers. While the pattern of two men and a woman competing for love and power has become clichéd, it is affective in this story. The complexity of John’s evil-wants-to-be-good character is intriguing but, as for me, I would choose Team Shinobu for the love interest. It will be interesting to see how this not quite genre book will unwind in new and interesting ways. Reviewer: Lois Rubin Gross; Ages 14 up.
VOYA, August 2015 (Vol. 38, No. 3) - Bonnie Kunzel
The titular Seekers, inheritors of an ancient family tradition, are assassins. In alternating chapters, three trainees, along with one of their watchers, provide the narration. Fifteen-year-old Quin and her distant cousin, Shinobu, pass the final series of tests. Instead of a worthy mission to destroy evildoers, their first task as Seekers is to slaughter a wealthy family. Sixteen-year-old John, the third trainee, plans to use his Seeker status to reclaim his family’s Athame, the stone knife that cuts portals in reality for transportation elsewhere. When Quin’s father fails him, John returns with hired fighters to reclaim his family’s Athame. In the subsequent battle, Quin is wounded and uses the Athame to escape with Shinobu, fleeing the burning estate and the nightmare that is the life of a Seeker through a portal to Hong Kong. After she is healed, she becomes a healer, with no memory of her prior life. Shinobu chooses a different path, dividing his time between the dangerous life of a salvage diver and visits to opium dens. The outside world eventually intrudes, with John having tracked Quin to Hong Kong, still searching for the Athame and the Dreads, supposed impartial watchers who are not impartial. This series opener ends, but not the deadly conflict over the use of the Athame and the fate of the world; the fast-paced action, bloody battles, breathless escapes, intrigue, and treachery will continue in subsequent volumes. Fans of steampunk will enjoy this science fiction fantasy, with its intriguing world and interesting characters, and they will look forward to following their adventures in subsequent volumes. Reviewer: Bonnie Kunzel; Ages 15 to 18.
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up—A life of honor, using her training for the good of humankind—that's what Quin Kincaid has been promised. Under the watchful eye of her father she has learned to use the tools of the Seeker: the "whipsword" with its deadly ability to assume the form of any weapon, and the "athame," a stone dagger that can slice through the threads of time, space, and matter, transporting the user to almost any destination. But upon taking her oath, she finds that her father's idea of the honorable work of a Seeker leads her to commit terrible acts. When a fiery siege is launched on their compound, Quin takes the opportunity to escape. Now she and her training partners, John and Shinobu, must come to terms with the dark deeds of their past, reclaim the honor of their families, and determine the true and proper duties of a Seeker. This novel combines all of the modern components for a successful young adult novel: a heroine with a perfect mix of innocence and lethal force; a society that, while not quite dystopian, needs saving; a love interest who is dangerous and forbidden; and the promise of sequels-to-come. Dayton has created a complex and intriguing set of characters here. Fans of Veronica Roth's "Divergent" (HarperCollins), Marie Lu's "Legend" (Putnam), and Suzanne Collins's "The Hunger Games" (Scholastic) series: your next obsession has arrived.—Sara Saxton, Wasilla Public Library, Wasilla, AK