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Magical and Riveting: A Review of VESSEL by Sarah Beth Durst

Posted by on September 15, 2012
Sarah Beth Durst
320 pages
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Release Date: September 11th, 2012
Source: ARC from Publisher
Rating: LIKED

Liyana has trained her entire life to be the vessel of a goddess. The goddess will inhabit Liyana’s body and use magic to bring rain to the desert. But Liyana’s goddess never comes. Abandoned by her angry tribe, Liyana expects to die in the desert. Until a boy walks out of the dust in search of her.

Korbyn is a god inside his vessel, and a trickster god at that. He tells Liyana that five other gods are missing, and they set off across the desert in search of the other vessels. For the desert tribes cannot survive without the magic of their gods. But the journey is dangerous, even with a god’s help. And not everyone is willing to believe the trickster god’s tale.

The closer she grows to Korbyn, the less Liyana wants to disappear to make way for her goddess. But she has no choice: She must die for her tribe to live. Unless a trickster god can help her to trick fate—or a human girl can muster some magic of her own.

   Get ready to plunge head-first into another world that will leave you more than thirsty. Sarah Beth Durst takes readers for a ride in a dessert where tribes will do anything for a drop of rain – even sacrifice their own.

   Liyana has been training all her life to die. Ever since the moment she went on a dreamwalk, she and her tribe have known she’ll have to die. Sacrifice, is the word, but to her, death and sacrifice mean the same. Liyana is a headstrong girl not afraid to use her mouth, and unaccustomed to holding back words that shouldn’t be said.

   When the goddess supposed to inhabit (read, takeover) Liyana’s body doesn’t show up, her tribe abandons her to the merciless desert. Left with nothing but a sand-filled well and the provisions of the scorching earth, Liyana knows death is just a day or two away. Enter Korbin, out of nowhere. Turns out, the gods are missing. And he needs Liyana’s help to find them.

   But Liyana knows: once the gods are found, she’ll have to give up her life for them anyway. The struggle in VESSEL isn’t just in the world, it’s within Liyana as well. And while she fights for her people, she might just be fighting for herself, and a new-found right to live.

   VESSEL was different. At times it reminded me of Moira Young’s BLOOD RED ROAD, but that was only in setting. Everything else was unique. Sarah Beth Durst’s writing flows and captivates, while her plot pulls and submerges you into her story. Magical and riveting, VESSEL is a definite must-read.

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  1. This is my first time hearing of this one. The cover is amazing, but the story itself sounds so unique. I loved Blood Red Road, mostly because of its amazing settings, and I can't wait to see what Vessel has in store for me!

  2. Sounds good. Ive read Drink, Slay, Love, but this sounds really different. Drink, Slay, Love wasn't very serious, but this sounds like it is. But that wont mean I won't like it.

  3. Vessel is on hold for me at the library. I can't wait to be able to go pick it up, take a pj and chocolate day, and read to my hearts content, while alternately closing the book just to look at the beautiful cover! Thanks so much for the great review. And for helping me make the decision about the pj and chocolate day!

  4. So, I wanted to come back now that I have read Vessel so I could say WOW! Just Wow! What an absolutely breathtaking book this was. The cover wasn't the only thing beautiful about it. I loved Sarah Beth Durst before Vessel, but after? My affections are much greater. I can't wait to see what she brings us next!

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