Singer of All Songs (Chanters of Tremaris #1)

Singer of All Songs (Chanters of Tremaris #1)

4.7 60
by Kate Constable

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Kate Constable's lyrical, acclaimed fantasy debut--now in paperback!

Calwyn has never been beyond the high ice-wall that guards the sisters of Antaris from the world of Tremaris. She knows only the rounds of her life as a novice ice priestess, tending her bees, singing her ice chantments, and dreaming.
But then Calwyn befriends Darrow, a mysterious Outlander who

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Kate Constable's lyrical, acclaimed fantasy debut--now in paperback!

Calwyn has never been beyond the high ice-wall that guards the sisters of Antaris from the world of Tremaris. She knows only the rounds of her life as a novice ice priestess, tending her bees, singing her ice chantments, and dreaming.
But then Calwyn befriends Darrow, a mysterious Outlander who appears inside the Wall and warns of an approaching danger. To help Darrow, to see the world, and perhaps to save it, Calwyn will leave the safety of the Wall for a journey with a man she barely knows--and an adventure as beautiful and dangerous as the music of chantment itself.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This first book in a planned trilogy, centered on a 16-year-old who is enticed outside of her kingdom, should generate interest in a promising newcomer to children's fantasy," according to PW. Ages 12-up. (Mar.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Young adult fantasy literature has a strong new voice in Australian Kate Constable. Her first novel is also the first installment in "The Chanters of Cremaris" trilogy. Calwyn is nearing her last year of training to become a priestess in the walled land of Antaris. Her magical specialty—which she accomplishes by singing songs, or chantments—is Ice. Calwyn can manipulate elements of ice for a variety of purposes, the foremost being keeping the wall strong and impenetrable. When Calwyn rescues an injured Outlander, a sorcerer named Darrow, who has somehow penetrated the walls of Antaris, her life takes an unsuspected turn. Darrow is being pursued by the sorcerer, Samis, whose evil lust for power drives him to attain all nine powers of Cremaris, including Ice, Fire, Iron, Beasts, and Wind. If Samis is successful, he will be the Singer of All Songs and rule as Emperor of all Cremaris. Calwyn and Darrow are forced to abandon Calwyn's homeland, with Samis in hot pursuit. Together, and with the help of well-drawn, likeable characters that they meet along the way, the pair travels to many corners of this well-imagined universe. With this maturely written, richly imagined novel, Kate Constable will surely develop a loyal following. 2004 (orig. 2002), Arthur A Levine Books/Scholastic, Ages 10 to 14.
—Christopher Moning
Constable makes a solid debut in the United States with the first installment of The Chanters of Tremaris Trilogy. Calwyn, sixteen, is a novice ice priestess in Antaris, a land bound by an enormous wall of ice maintained by the priestesses through their sung chantments. Orphaned as an infant, her father unknown, Calwyn sings her chantments and tends bees; Antaris is the only world she has ever known. The routine of her life is disrupted when Darrow, an ironcrafter, makes his way over the wall while fleeing from Samis, a power hungry sorcerer—who happens to be his closest friend. Calwyn's life becomes bound up with Darrow's as they leave Antaris and set out across Tremaris to try to find a way to stop Samis. They acquire several companions along the way, each with a special gift. Constable's descriptive and detailed narrative is reminiscent of fellow Australian Garth Nix's writing but not quite as finely honed. The story carries itself well, although it occasionally slows. The plot does not founder, however, and it is compelling enough to keep the reader turning pages. Constable also is not afraid to let the story develop naturally, even where the fate of her characters is concerned. These characters are well rounded and complex, with authentic emotions and responses. There is a finished feel to the book, a sense of completion, even though the reader knows that there is more to come. This feeling of resolution is satisfying while piquing curiosity for more. VOYA Codes: 4Q 4P J S (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; Broad general YA appeal; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2004 (orig. 2002), Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic,304p., Ages 12 to 18.
—Donna Scanlon
Calwyn is living a quiet life as a novice priestess of ice-magic, hidden away from the world behind a magical wall of ice. Then one day she finds a wounded man inside the ice wall, and a man who has his own magic, that of iron. Worse, he brings a warning of an evil sorcerer, who wants to control all the world's magic. So Calwyn and Darrow set off on their quest, encountering friends, danger and masters of other magic. Together, can they stand against the one who would be The Singer Of All Songs? This first book in the Chanters of Tremaris series is well written and assured, the magic and the world carefully planned. A must for all fantasy collections. (Chanters of Tremaris, Book 1). KLIATT Codes: JSA*—Exceptional book, recommended for junior and senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2002, Scholastic, 297p., Ages 12 to adult.
—Deirdre Root
School Library Journal
Gr 6 Up-In Tremaris, a world with three moons, Chanters are sorcerers who can sing nine different types of magic. Calwyn, a soon-to-be priestess of "icecall" in the women-ruled Antaris, longs to travel beyond the wall that separates her country from the rest of the world. She gets her wish when she meets Darrow, a wounded ironcraft sorcerer who has somehow managed to enter Antaris. Darrow is in flight from Samis, an evil sorcerer who would control the world by learning all nine powers of Chantment. As Calwyn defies her priestess sisters to join Darrow and other companions who would defy Samis, she begins to realize that her own powers extend beyond that of icecall. The story contains elements of many great fantasy novels, including handsome, tormented sorcerers and scrappy urchins who reveal potent powers of their own. The landscape is vivid and fully realized, but the characters are sometimes static. Some of the plot devices seem overly familiar, but others are reworked and have the appeal of variants of well-loved fairy tales. Fans of Tamora Pierce's "Lioness" books (Atheneum) as well as Marion Zimmer Bradley's Mists of Avalon (Ballantine, 1984) will welcome the first book in this new trilogy from Australia.-Farida S. Dowler, formerly at Bellevue Regional Library, WA Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
This first series installment has intriguing magics and geographies but is sewn from thin cloth. On Tremaris, a planet with three moons, Calwyn lives in the land of Antaris and trains as a priestess. Her craft is ice-call, a "chantment" (magic through singing) that commands "everything that is cold: ice and snow and freezing." When a haughty stranger crosses Antaris's ice-border and needs help, Calwyn flees with him into faraway lands she's never seen. They travel and collect friends, some of whom know other chantments, while attempting to defeat sorcerer Samis, who wants to learn all nine Powers of chantment and thus conquer the world. Calwyn is a fairly passive protagonist, and several things (the actual workings of chantment; definitions of the Powers; various characters' emotions) are well-sketched, but without depth. A map is sorely missed. Not meaty, but creative. (Fantasy. YA)

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Product Details

Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
The Chanters of Tremaris, #1
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
4.34(w) x 6.76(h) x 0.87(d)
Age Range:
12 Years

Meet the Author

KATE CONSTABLE spend much of her childhood in Papua New Guinea, without a television but within reach of the library, where she "inhaled" stories. She studied Arts/Law at Melbourne University before beginning her life as a writer. Constable lives in Thornbury, Australia, with her husband and child.

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