Sarah's Stars

Mahtab Narsimhan. The Third Eye
Dundurn  $12.99   ISBN 978-1-55002-750-1   240 pg.
Reviewed by Ceilidh, Age 15

In the clearing lay Ravi, or what remained of him. His skin was an ugly shade of translucent green. Black liquid coursed visibly through his body. A black, fist-sized sack inflated and deflated in his chest. His eyes rolled back in their sockets and he lay staring sightlessly at the crowd that pressed forward, gaping at him. His hair was matted and dirty. A foul stench emanated from his open mouth, as if something had died inside it. But what had the crowd shocked were his feet. They had turned 180 degrees, till his toes faced backwards. On his forehead was a deep gash from which oozed a black, vicious liquid. He drew in laborious gasps that sounded deafeningly loud in the pin-drop silence.

“Ravi, talk to me,” pleaded his mother, sitting next to him but not daring to touch him.

A number of people tried to drag her away from that thing that lay on the ground. No one could understand what power could change Ravi into that deformed creature.

Tara is only thirteen years old, and ever since her mother and grandfather left when she was young, and her father remarried, she has been in charge of her younger brother, Suraj, who is eight. And when Zarku replaces her grandfather as the head healer in the village, everything seems to go downhill. Men have been going missing in other villages to the point where there are not men left, and slowly men are disappearing from Morni as well. There is something not right about Zarku, too; he seems to have an unexplained hatred for Tara and her brother, and an alliance with Kali, their stepmother. But his emotions are not the only thing different about Zarku, he is the one that has the third eye, covered over with a lid in the middle of his forehead, it still is said to hold great power. Whether that is true or not, is something that you, the reader, will have to find out. While desperately trying to find her mother and grandfather, she also has to keep out of the eye of Kali, and Zarku. But will she be able to find her relatives before Zarku finds her?

Well, the proper line to open this seems to be that, I really, thoroughly enjoyed this novel. It was sort of a Cinderella-meets-Pendragon story. Cinderella contributed the idea of the evil stepmother, and wicked-in-training stepsister, which are added to the family by the brainwashed father. And from Pendragon, the amazing fantasy images and so-hellish-he-can’t-be-real antagonist. Those are the thoughts I had almost instantly when I picked up this book and began to read. It was a perfect novel, and is definitely one that I will never forget reading. I actually really hope that the story continues in a sequel. The story drags you in whether you want to be in it or not, and if you are one of those people that like to sit on the sidelines when you read, this is a book that you will have to get ready to jump into. With cliffhangers at the end of each chapter, the story pulls you further and further in; time will fly by. It keeps you wondering until the end, and even after, you will still be wondering.

I recommend this book for ages 12 and up; it contains some frightening scenes, but nothing terrifying. I give The Third Eye five scrutinizing stars and if I could give it more, I’d do it in an instant.

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