The Children of Darkness (The Seekers, #1)

The Children of Darkness (The Seekers, #1)

by David Litwack

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The Children of Darkness 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 25 reviews.
WhisperingStories More than 1 year ago
Like all of the best dystopian future novels, this story was deliberately vague about the ‘when’ and ‘where’ so that it would remain timeless. What we do know is that it is set hundreds of years from the present day, in a second dark age centuries old. The premise of this novel was excellent and highly poignant in this day and age. The world is undergoing a second dark age, spanning centuries, where all progress, discovery and freedom of thought is halted by a religious order known as ‘The Temple’. This order isn’t inherently evil, it has been created by agreement following devastating destruction caused by religious wars in the past – this order is the amalgamation of different religions, keeping only the best and fundamental facets. The order has now become corrupt and is ‘teaching’ young adults in the population, to ensure that civilians are obedient and reject ‘the darkness’ which is essentially anything which can be considered to call the Temple into question. This teaching involves non-violently torturing one in three young people and traumatising them into obedience, which has led to what approaches a majority of the population despising and resenting the regime. The story follows three characters who have certain fleeting similarities to the main characters of the "Harry Potter" series; all three have very strong and unique personalities but they are bound by loyalty, friendship and bravery. I love to see this in young adult books, characters who compromise and sacrifice their own safety for friendships rather than for romantic ties. These three best friends are a perfect combination of personalities; Thomas is a happy-go-lucky boy who is chosen by the Temple to undergo a ‘teaching’, despite the psychological damage he suffers from this, he returns to his friends and will do anything to help them despite his fears. He can’t feel the same resolve as the other two to overthrow the Temple because he can understand why the organisation exists, having been shown the atrocities associated with ‘the darkness’ that the Temple protects the population from, however his loyalty is with his friends. Nathan is an imaginative and brave character, he doesn’t question that he is destined for better things than he can hope to achieve back home. When he finds himself in a position to escape the Temple and ultimately save both of his best friends, he doesn’t question it and jumps in head first – this is perfectly balanced by Orah, the wiser and more steadfast of the three who keeps them on track and safe. She isn’t afraid to back down from a fight, but is the most likely to think their way out of needing to fight in the first place. This story is excellently paced, the three friends begin a journey to collect four clues which will lead them to the keep, a mysterious location which will contain the knowledge to bring down the Temple. Each clue allows us to learn more about this interesting world and the history of new characters to form our own opinion about the Temple, the author has clearly planned this out very carefully so that none of the story is rushed or filled with information dumps. Once the characters arrive at the keep, the tone of the book then changes from the adventure and chase sequences we have encountered so far and becomes more introspective, as each character now faces the moral dilemma of what they should do with the new information they have uncovered. Read more at Whispering Stories Book Blog
Cyn_Ayala23 More than 1 year ago
Published on June 22, 2015 by Evolved Publishing LLC, The Children of Darkness by David Litwack is a young adult dystopian novel about a trio of friends who face unbelievable odds while retaining their friendship. This novel had a very good start but there something lacking within the characterization between the three characters that were supposed to be the best of friend but the tension between the three of them, it was annoying. The narrative of Orah was particularly obnoxious. Her friend Thomas suffered tortures she would never understand and on numerous occasions of the story she acts annoyed by the very presence of her friend. It’ doesn’t seem like a real friendship, as if they were friends at all making all the times she is kind to him, somewhat unbelievable. It was discouraging to read and to believe that they were the best of friends, which is what the reader was supposed to believe. So as far as character dynamics, it was very evident that Thomas was the third wheel making it an awkward and hard to believe friendship between the three characters. So it made it hard to read and really focus on the relationship between the characters. Narrative, development, all of those connected with one another and tie together with the character dynamics so it makes it the reading difficult. The story as a hole was slow to begin with and it’s all about setting up the foundation of the world, how the world works. It’s a little jarring admittedly because the story begins as if the reader is already familiar with the religious doctrine that governs the people. It’s obvious that the world is set in a very dark future where teachings govern with fear of the past. That makes for an interesting story and the slow groundwork, while making it difficult to draw in the reader, it sets up the world on a light level, not enough to really submerge the reader in the world, but enough to allow the reader to get to know the fundamentals of the world, leaving room for the reader to join the journey with the trio and get to know the world through their eyes and their fundamentals. That is when the story becomes interesting, when the trio are on the journey together and are learning about their world. It questions their beliefs and their system and everything around them and that is a very interesting premise to work with. These three characters go through some very strong changes in their world when they take on the reality of the situation, it shatters their walls, their beliefs and is a life changing element in their world. While the story never gets very action packed and follows a slow and steady path of the story, it is well written enough to draw the reader in the more the story progresses. This novel questions what is right versus what is wrong and how should a system of religion govern people? Is it right to hide the past? Is it right to deny people what is in their hearts? These are very important questions that are also very relevant in today’s society and that relevance makes this a good book.(★★★☆☆ | B)
Leaor More than 1 year ago
After thinking for a long time I rate this book 3 stars. The beginning of this book was very confusing. Maybe because it was also very very slow. I could not power through the first 20 pages without falling asleep ( I do my reading before I go to sleep). After the first couple of chapters the story becomes very catchy and you just fly through it. It's a very interesting topic not like most dystopian books. I'm not sure if I agree with the young adult genre. It has a more 'mature' feel, but a 'younger' storyline. Overall, it was an enjoyable read.
JBronder More than 1 year ago
The story starts in the town of Little Pond and is about Nathan, Orah, and Thomas, They live simply in their little village under the oppression of the Temple of Light. The Temple tries to keep the people in the light and prevent the dark corruption that ended the world before to come back. They enforce this by forcing youth to go through enlightening. This basically is using technology from the past to brainwash the youth to not go looking for anything from the past. Thomas is chosen for this enlightening and returns haunted. Thomas wants to know what is going on and decides that the three of them find the keep. The keep holds the secret to the time of darkness and the truth of the Temple of Light. The three youths then travel the world to different locations unlocking the secrets of the past. But the question is if they are going to make a difference. Especially since the main teaching of the Temple of Light is if a prophet says lets return to darkness you should stone them. I love dystopian stories and I couldn’t wait to see how Children of Darkness played out. You start out in a small village that you can tell lives closer to tradition than the teachings of the Temple. When Thomas is selected for enlightening, you can see how everyone lives in terror of the Temple. It was sad when you see what Thomas goes through and so ironic the methods that the Temple uses in its enlightening process. When Nathan, Orah, and Thomas set out to find the keep, I was really excited to find out what happened to the world. I was cheering for them on their adventure. There was not a lot of action and fighting, more of just a quest for the truth. But it leads to a great ending and now I can’t wait to see what happens in the second book. I received this book for free from eBooks for Review in exchange for an honest review.
DarleneCupp More than 1 year ago
what a beautiful and engaging story! I had no idea really what to expect when reading this, only than the description sounded pretty interesting and the opening pages were intriguing. I read it in 2 days and was sad when it was over. The way that Mr. David Litwack writes it just reaches out and grabs you and doesn’t let go from start to finish. I imagined all the characters and scenes perfectly and loved every page. Highly recommend to anyone who likes a good, original fantasy story!
Coreeez More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars WOW. This book was incredible! I’m so impressed with this amazing story and how the author wove so many storylines together, and had such vivid descriptions and an original plot. I admit at first I was confused as to what was going on…it’s a very fantasy/scifish/futuristic/supernaturalish book so there was a lot of world building that needed to happen for me to start understanding the whole thing. But the characters were incredible, and once I really got into it I couldn’t put it down! Definitely recommend, even if the beginning seems a bit confusing just keep going because it will all make sense soon.
JesseThomas More than 1 year ago
David Litwack has a new fan in me! I admit I went into this totally blind… I didn’t read the description or anything… and I kept thinking to myself “whoa, this is really good… this guy can write…’ then I was so lost in the story I didn’t want it to end. I haven’t connected with ‘younger’ characters like this since…. I don’t know when. Generally I read books more geared for adults. But this one just grabbed me by my imagination and didn’t want to let go. Descriptive, passionate and fulfilling… a genuine treat and I will be reading the rest of David Litwack’s backlist soon.
RepoManJM More than 1 year ago
I’ve read a few books now by David Litwack, and while I’ve thought them all to be quite good, this is one of his best. Fully imagined and realized, ‘The Seekers’ refers to a trio of friend out on a mission to save their friend and see why everything they thought they knew about their world was wrong… it is a search for the ‘truth’ and in doing so they will face more obstacles than they ever expected, transforming them along the way. I was riveted to this book the whole way through and genuinely enjoy the author’s descriptive narrative style and way of doing dialogue. These things really can’t be taught, in my opinion. Enough twists to stay unpredictable, and a heartwarming ending to make it all worth it. Great book!
FeatheredQuillBookReviews More than 1 year ago
As all readers know, the “dystopian” era of literature has become a booming business. From top sellers that have reached the screen quite quickly (aka: The Maze Runner), these tales have taken over the minds and hearts of everyone from YA lovers to adults who literally crave a new kind of suspense/thriller. So it is always a pleasure to review a brand new series that delves into the dystopian world and delivers an A+ storyline. This, Book One of “The Seekers” series, introduces Orah and Nathaniel to the world; two pals who have been friends since childhood and share many traits that include awesome skill sets, as well as a penchant to want to overthrow the limitations put upon them by the powers that be. Yet, for now, they keep silent and go with the flow. You see, it’s been a thousand years since the “Darkness” came upon everyone. This was the time that ushered in social upheaval and the collapse of the norm. Pain, violence, all bad things came along with the Darkness, and for ten centuries, religious ones (the vicars) who make up the Temple of Light have been doing their best to stop the craziness and try to bring some kind of order and peace to the people. Of course, the Temple isn’t all it’s cracked up to be; after all, they have to set rules and deliver punishment for those who do not follow said rules by using their ‘temple magic.’ Orah is beckoned to the Temple to endure what one would see as a ritual in a child’s life where they leave childhood far behind and hook themselves to the Light for all time. Nathaniel, being her pal and agreeing that the Temple is not as ‘light’ as it should be, tries to rescue Orah so she doesn’t have to become one of them for the rest of time. Adventure springs eternal when they both find themselves wandering Temple City and discovering secrets that are supposed to stay buried. Because if these secrets are known and a mysterious location is found, then Orah, Nathaniel and the rest of the people may be able to find a path that will allow them to rise up against the ‘Light’ machine, so to speak, and get their lives back. The author has done an excellent job bringing this world to life. From the dark prisons to the awesome magic and awe-inspiring belief that Orah and Nathaniel have in each other – the plot unfolds easily, swiftly, and never lets the readers’ attention wane. Quill says: After reading this one, it will be a real hardship to have to wait to see what happens next.
SteffyC More than 1 year ago
I read this book a few years ago (under a different title) and was happy to read it again… and once again I will give this book 5 stars! It is a book you just want to dive into and stay lost in, and I finished it in two nights. It’s been so long since I’d read the first version that many elements were new to me, but it didn’t lose any of it magical appeal… I do think this version is better though. Mr. Litwack has perfected the delicate balance of creating an imaginative and complex world that isn’t confusing or frustrating… but is just complex enough to keep us totally hooked! And it makes you think about the bigger picture… like that he doesn’t dumb it down for his younger audiences.
SherriWarner More than 1 year ago
not just another dystopian or fantasy novel—To me, “The Seekers- the Children of Darkness” was reminiscent of (if I might be so bold) The Harry Potter novels in the sense that sure, they are books about a boy wizard, but that is just the surface…really that is just the setting for a cleverly written, deeply emotional and complex tale that hits many layers of ‘real life’ (even in an imagined setting) with nuance and finesse. The search for right and wrong, truth, loss, strength, weakness, etc… So many themes delicately interwoven into this brilliant and moving plot. I flew through the book so fast I felt like I couldn’t get enough. The more I read, the more I wanted to read. The ending took my breath away and made me happy at the same time. A must read for fans of YA-MG fantasy and dystopia.
NicolaF More than 1 year ago
Intelligent, creative, passionate, engaging… thee are just a few words I’d use to describe “The Seekers” by David Litwack. I am obsessed with dystopian and sci-fi, and in my opinion this one ranks up there near the top. Of course it’s not perfect (no book is) but I liked that it has such a unique premise that doesn’t feel done to death, even though he overall concepts are familiar (if this makes sense). Light vs. Dark, good vs. evil, right and wrong… courage, strength, friends, etc. I thought it was a really fast read not too heavy or dense, perfect for the youngers but ‘smart’ enough for the olders… a solid 4 stars, and will be interested in anything else this author writes. Was really good.
Darla_Ortiz More than 1 year ago
Loved it! I’ve read other books by David Litwack, including an earlier version of this one. Since my memory span is about as long as my arm these days, I read it again, and even though I thought the first one was wonderful, this one was better! The pacing was perfect, the editing nearly flawless, and I think some of the characters were more fully fleshed out. My only disappointment is that this seems to be a stand-alone novel, and I would love to have seen it be a series perhaps… but it is a great change of pace from much of the bleak, violent YA dystopian out there, I really think this one will have great appeal for a wide audience, young and old alike. Universal themes, strong, descriptive writing and a colorful cast of characters makes this a book not to be missed.
JeanOJO More than 1 year ago
for me, this book was just okay. I liked the premise and thought it had a lot of potential, but something just failed to grab me the way I thought it should. (Note, my daughter read it right after me an LOVED it…so there you go.) Something that struck me was the overall tone of the book…it felt and sounder more mature that a normal young adult novel. Like if I didn’t know that the boys were supposed to be younger I would have never known that they were. Also, I thought there was too much “telling” of events instead of “showing”, and was always kept at arm’s length from the action…like it was happening around me but not to me, if you know what I mean. Maybe it was because of the multiple pov’s and third-person omniscient narration, but I never quite knew what character I was “tuning into”, and that is something that is important for me to do. So much of this is probably just my personal preferences, as it was a decent story and as I mentioned my teenaged daughter loved it. It just wasn’t my cuppa.
ElizaBEB More than 1 year ago
first, I have to say that I don’t normally read books that are mostly geared to YA, (young adult) but I was looking for something a little out of my comfort zone and this book’s description sounded intriguing and the reviews were encouraging. Well, I am most certainly glad I took the chance on David Litwack’s “The Seekers”! This was a brilliant novel and totally exceeded my expectations… The title comes from the three youths who are seeking the truth as everything they thought they knew in their world was wrong, so they set out to fix it. This sets out a chain of events and nonstop action that keeps going through to the end. All in all a very good read that I’d recommend even to those who don’t normally read this sort of thing…try it, you’ll be pleasantly surprised!
LaylaM1 More than 1 year ago
The Seekers was the first book I’ve read by David Litwack, but I assure you it will not be the last! From the opening pages I was drawn into this exciting tale, and I enjoyed the characters and how they rose up to face their fears and fight their battles to restore their way of life. I was thoroughly engaged from the opening pages and my interest never faded until the closing lines. What I liked most about this book was that the story was constantly moving forward, never dwelling on something too long or rehashing backstory (a common mistake authors make, I have found). Instead we are swept up in this fantastical adventure and carried along for a magnificent ride. I was almost sad when it was over and hopefully we haven’t seen the last of these wonderful characters! A great book for middle grade on up.
GillianH More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed “The Seekers” by author David Litwack, even though YA dystopian/sci-fi/fantasy, isn’t usually one of my more preferred genres (don’t dislike it, just don’t generally gravitate). But I was drawn to the description and liked the descriptive writing style of the author in the sample, so I read the whole thing. I was really impressed! I was pulled into this fantastical world from the start and absolutely loved the relationship with Nathanial, Orah, And Thomas, along with the other great supporting cast. I also liked that for a fantasy, it felt real and relatable (for the most part), and didn’t have a bunch of crazy, unpronounceable names, or completely contrived plot elements! A fun, action filled alternative-reality with a solid ending, appropriate for younger teens on up.
BellaReadz More than 1 year ago
This is a hard book to review in just a paragraph, as there were many things that I really loved, and a few things that I though could be improved upon. First I have to say that I adored all of the characters (even the bad ones), and thought they all felt really authentic. I loved that no one ever felt really cliché or stereotypical, and that each one had qualities that made them unique. What I didn’t like so much was that I didn’t feel like there was much character development or real struggle of conflict…there was just a certain amount of tension I thought was lacking. And I thought the ending was a bit abrupt (boo) and some parts weren’t as explained as I would have liked. But Overall I did like reading it and I give this book a solid 4 stars, as I did really enjoy it and think others will too. Recommended for fans of dystopian-fantasy adventure.
KMatthews More than 1 year ago
"The Seekers” has all the elements one could hope for from a MG/YA/Crossover dystopian/fantasy adventure. Although it is about three younger kids (2 boys and a girl) it is written in a way that adults will certainly enjoy it as well. They must embark on a quest to restore the balance of good and evil, all while being hunted and facing multiple challenges to overcome. While the concept is not exactly new, the story felt original in its details and with the characters and their development. The writing was strong and had very few errors from what I could tell. An enjoyable read that I would recommend to fans of fantasy and adventure without hesitation.
ClaireBear74 More than 1 year ago
I really loved this book! This is the third one I’ve read from David Litwack and he definitely has proven himself to be one author I can count on for an incredible engrossing story that pushes the boundaries of imagination and makes you think. (His other two books are: Along the Watchtower and The Daughter of The Sea and Sky- both excellent!) Like the others, it is excellently written (a few minor editing things but nothing too major) and kept my attention from the dramatic opening to the fulfilling finish. I was genuinely surprised at a few things that happened, and thought the tension and narrative was great, especially for the intended age group (MG/YA) Hope to read more from Mr. Litwack soon!
SamRyan More than 1 year ago
"The Seekers…” by David Litwack was for me a bit convoluted at times, and took a while to really get my attention, but I did think it kept getting better and better as it went along. I am a big fan of the current dystopian/scifi trend, and it I appreciate the lengths the author went thru to make his book stand out from much of the typical fare out there these days. It felt deep, had heart, and had a strong message of hope, even if for me it seemed to lose a bit of its focus at times. It takes a lot to really knock my socks off, but there were at least several times in this book that I was caught off guard and surprised. Some things were a bit predictable, but still an engaging page turner. A few minor editing things, and some conversations could have done without the chit chat, but overall a fast paced, emotionally fulfilling page turner.
KayleeeKS More than 1 year ago
Great action, well-written and very creative, “The Seekers” (The Children of Darkness) from David Litwack is a must read for fans of novels such as “Harry Potter series” and maybe even “Percy Jackson”. This book is far less involved than those, but to me that is a good thing. It still “feels’ big and epic, with a varied cast of colorful characters and plenty of magic and thrills to go around. There are some familiar tropes here (as with most fantasy/sci fi), however, I feel Mr. Litwack did an amazing job of bringing in a fresh voice and making the story wholly his own, and giving it a unique feel. I didn’t feel like I’ve read this million times before. A few things, though, I thought at times there was way too much “telling” instead of showing, lots of backstory and narrative prose instead of dialogue. Not too bad, but some parts felt rushed and could have used more fleshing out, while a few others felt sort of needless. For the most part the editing was great. Overall and engrossing read that will satisfy even the pickiest dystopian reader! (suitable for most ages)
MegKing More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars - It seems like so often when I read books, usually I either like the dialogue, and the narrative seems flat (or too telling and long-winded) or the prose is good, but the conversations seem contrived and fake. But I loved how seamlessly everything worked together in “The Seekers: The Children of Darkness” by author David Litwack, and was so well balanced. And he has a great talent for writing younger characters, their words and actions are believable. My only real complaint honestly was the formatting- I don’t like the block text and felt like too much white space (slows down my reading) Otherwise I loved it… It had it all, seriously…adventure, drama, magic, danger, friends, enemies… takes us on an unforgettable, and ultimately fulfilling journey that I won’t soon forget. Great for ages 12+
BrendaMax More than 1 year ago
What can I say about this book? First off, I can tell you that it is a richly written and creative dystopian/fantasy that is aimed at the YA crowd, and fans of this genre will love sinking their teeth into this one! It stands out to me in terms of originality, even if some elements are familiar. Enjoyed the author’s strong world-building and creativity. The story flows from scene to scene effortlessly, and the author shows exceptional ability when it comes to storytelling. David Litwack has the ability to entice the reader into this dark and intriguing world which must receive nothing less than a 5 Stars from me.
LauraClarke More than 1 year ago
I knew by the 20% mark that I would really love this book and it would go on my “favorites” shelf, and I was right! I admit I had no real expectations when starting it, seeing as how I’d never read the author before and the description felt a bit “wide-reaching” to me. Wondered if he’d pull it off, and I truly believe he did! I was so immersed in this book and impressed with the level of detailing on almost every single aspect. A lesser author would have glossed over some of these scenes that David Litwack carefully and masterfully brought to live in a memorable way, and made us care about the characters and feel invested in the story. I know the ending wraps up nicely, but I’d love to see them in another book someday! Recommend for MG/YA, but adults will enjoy it as well.