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Seeker: Book One of the Noble Warriors    by William Nicholson order for
by William Nicholson
Order:  USA  Can
Harcourt, 2006 (2006)
Hardcover, Audio, CD
* *   Reviewed by Anise Hollingshead

The island of Anacrea is home to an ancient monastery whose members have only one purpose, which is to protect and serve their god the All and Only. A mystic cult, their practices and lives are secret from the rest of the world. They are called the Nomana, the Noble Warriors. When a boy or girl reaches their sixteenth birthday, they may leave their homes to apply to join the Nomana, but ultimately only a few are chosen.

Seeker After Truth's father plans for him to become a teacher like he is, but Seeker has other dreams. When his brother Blaze is cast out of the Noma for supposedly treasonous behaviour, Seeker vows to discover the truth. Mixed up with his anger over the injustice to his brother is his intense desire to join the Noma. Morning Star is a young girl who has been raised in a simple manner as a hill villager, but plans on following her mother into the Noma. Small and seemingly meek, she nevertheless possesses great discernment and much bravery. Wildman is aptly named, as he is a violent thief and killer. A couple of years older than Morning Star and Seeker, he is actually much more ignorant than they about many things to do with life and knowledge.

Together, these three set out to join the Noma. They soon find themselves mired in a plot by mysterious forces, which are using powerful people of the great city of Radiance to do their bidding. Whoever or whatever these powers may be, they seek to rid the world of the All and Only, and must bring down the Noma to do so.

The story begins with Seeker trying to find some way to live his own life, without disappointing his father. Seeker's father is the head teacher on the island of Noma, and wants his son to follow in his footsteps. However, Seeker has other plans. When his brother Blaze is cleansed from the Nomana for treason, Seeker finds the courage to break free. The story of teen rebellion against parental wishes is an old one, but it is handled well here. Seeker does end up going against his father's will, but his feelings are handled sensitively.

All of the characters are described vividly, and we soon feel we know them well. Seeker is a kind young man, who respects his father, but also wants to live his own life. He is a true and loyal friend to all. Morning Star is the most interesting character, as she is not pretty or attractive, but is intelligent and brave. Her exploits are the most entertaining of the book.

However, the character of Wildman is handled less well, as we are supposed to like and feel sympathy for him as he begins to experience good emotions for other people, but this is hard to do after the initial description of his enjoyment of killing others for no good reason. In fact, I found this aspect of the book a little disturbing, in that this psychopathic personality was to be redeemed ultimately by the desire to have real friends and a purpose in life. Sorry, but in real life, an eighteen-year-old who enjoys killing hapless people for sport is not redeemable.

Seeker is an interesting and entertaining fantasy that is to be the beginning of a new series, one that many older teens (I suggest fourteen and over) will enjoy.

Listen to a podcast interview with William Nicholson at

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