Gifts by Ursula Le Guin
Gifts is a book by Ursula Le Guin, the best-selling author of the Earthsea series. First published in the United Kingdom by Orion Children's Books in 2004.
Gifts is what can be described as a “grower”. It did not immediately grab me and hold my attention, the multitude of names and locations were slightly confusing and the characters themselves were not instantly likeable. However, once the stage had been set, things improved and there were a couple of very moving chapters that helped me, as a reader, to begin to warm to the story and the main protagonists. Gifts definitely ends better than it started and I would buy and read the second book, but I think there may be more enjoyable books out there.
Gifts is aimed at the young adult market and the themes are adult enough to completely avoid any thought of condescension. The problem is though, once an author like Ursula Le Guin ahs written a series as excellent as the Earthsea books they will always have their work compared to this high level of literature. Gifts is no Earthsea but enjoyable enough in its own right.
Orrec is the son of the Brantor of Caspromant; Gry the daughter of the Brantors of Barre and Rod. They have grown up together in neighbouring domains, running half-wild across the Uplands.
The people of the domains are like their land: harsh and fierce and prideful; ever at war with one or other of their neighbours, raiding cattle, capturing serfs, enlarging their holdings. It is only the gifts that keep the fragile peace.
The gifts are powers, given to protect the domains: they run from father to son and from mother to daughter.
The Barre gift is calling animals.
The women of Cordemant have the power of blinding, or making deaf, or taking away speech.
The Rodds can send a spellknife into a man's heart, or cut his throat, or maim as they please, if he's in sight.
The Callems can move heavy things by word and gesture – even buildings, even hills.
And Brantor Ogge of Drummant has the gift of slow wasting.
The Caspro gift is the worst and best of all; it is the gift of undoing: an insect, an animal, a place …
Orrec and Gry are the heirs to Caspro and Barre. Gry's gift runs true, but unlike her mother, she will not use it to call animals for the hunt. Orrec too has a problem, for his gift of undoing is wild: he cannot control it – and that is the most dangerous gift of all …
From: Gifts by Ursula Le Guin
This Gifts book review was written by Floresiensis
All reviews for: Annals of the Western Shore
Annals of the Western Shore: Book 1
Orrec, the son of the Brantor of Caspromant, and Gry, daughter of the Brantors of Barre and Rodd, have grown up together, running half-wild across the Uplands. The people t...
Have you read Gifts?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
Gifts reader reviews
7.8/10 from 1 reviews
There are currently no reader reviews for this book. Why not be the first?
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
When Hagurosan is told to take an offering to the shrine, he reluctantly begins his trek up the mountain. But when he gets hungry and eats the cake meant for the spirits, t...
Chronicles of Ancient Darkness
Thousands of years ago the land is one dark forest. Its people are hunter-gatherers. They know every tree and herb and they know how to survive in a time of enchantment and...
The Wardstone Chronicles
Thomas Ward is the seventh son of a seventh son and has been apprenticed to the local Spook. The job is hard, the Spook is distant and many apprentices have failed before T...
The Feathered Man
Jeremy de Quidt
In a German town, long ago, lives a tooth-puller’s boy called Klaus. It isn’t Klaus’s fault that he sees his master steal a diamond from the mouth of a de...
The Story of Cirrus Flux
You shall help me find him still… there is nowhere for the boy to hide.” Orphan boy Cirrus Flux is being watched. Merciless rogues are conniving to steal the w...
August 1611. Jack Fletcher is shipwrecked off the coast of Japan - his beloved father and the crew lie slaughtered by ninja pirates. Rescued by the legendary sword master M...
The Golden Acorn
Jack Brenin's life changes the moment he finds a golden acorn lying in the grass. He gets caught up in an extraordinary magical adventure and enters a world he believed...
Michael Belmont and the Tomb of Anubis
Ethan Russell Erway
Michael Belmont has always dreamed of leading a more adventurous life, but when it actually happens, he ends up getting more than he ever bargained for. Michael is sent to ...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages:
Best of 2016
The Silver Mask
The gods and goddesses are dead, killed two hundred years ago. With their destruction the moon split apart, the sun dwindled and the land was devastated. Civilisation has re-e...
Books of the Month
A selection of books - old and new alike - that were a joy to read.
Forget the old days. Forget summer. Forget warmth. Forget anything that doesn’t help you survive in the endless white wilderness beyond the edges of a fallen world. Lynn McBride has learned much since society collapsed in the face of nuclear war and the relentless spread of disease. As the memories of her old life continue to haunt, she...
Paris was supposed to save Hallie. Now... well, let’s just say Paris has other ideas. There’s a strange woman called The Chronometrist who will not leave her al...
A corrupted city. A dark dream of power. Luke is a prisoner, condemned for a murder he didn’t commit. Abi is a fugitive, desperate to free him before magic breaks his...
The Fifth Empire of Man
Rob J Hayes
The Pirate Isles are united under Drake Morrass’ flag, but the war has only just begun. There’s still a long way to go before he’s able to call himself Ki...
Ian C Esslemont
After the disappointments of Li Heng, Dancer and Kellanved wash up on a small insignificant island named Malaz. Immediately, of course, Kellanved plans to take it over. To ...
Age of Swords
Michael J Sullivan
Raithe, the God Killer, may have started the rebellion by killing a Fhrey, but long-standing enmities dividing the Rhunes make it all but impossible to unite against the co...
A Time of Dread
The Ben-Elim, a race of warrior angels, once vanquished a mighty demon horde. Now they rule the Banished lands. But their dominion is brutally enforced and their ancient en...