Palace of the Damned

Saga of Larten Crepsley Book Three

Author: Darren Shan
RRP: $15.99

The Saga of Larten Crepsley, I have been super excited about this series since discovering that it was being written. I am a huge fan of the Saga of Darren Shan, which I originally picked up because I saw the word Vampire on the cover, only to get it home and discover that it was intended for a 9-12 year old audience (I think, it was a few years ago now).  I still read the book and I was hooked, immediately I raced off to chase the rest of them; and I have collected the bulk of his young adult work for my nephew.

Loving Darren Shan as I do it was with great excitement I discovered Palace of the Damned in my TBR pile, thank you very much Harper Collins for the chance to review this book. Now I need to go read the first two books in the series, I have already ordered them for my nephew.

The Saga of Larten Crepsley introduces us to Mr Crepsley centuries before he came to our attention as part of the Cirque Du Freak. Shan takes us right back to the time Crepsley was blooded in the first book and through the four part series fills in all the years we only ever found out sketchy details about in the Darren Shan series.

Unfortunately I started this series at Book Three instead of Book One so there is still a lot of information I am missing, but that didn’t impact my reading experience – except maybe to make me want to find the first two books even more.

Palace Damned Cover

Palace of the Damned is aimed at a similar audience to the Darren Shan Saga and for those just being introduced to these vampires you could allow the kids to read the Larten series first, but I wouldn’t suggest it if they are starting young. I found these books to be more graphic than the Darren Shan ones. I was expecting insinuated violence , rather than actual violence, and much less blood. I still believe this series is suitable for a pre-teen audience but I would be a little more careful depending on how sensitive they were. I think my nephew will love it, he’s in his teen years now, but I can also think of a few younger children who will enjoy them.

Larten Crepsley was always very mysterious, never wanting to share his past with those around him, now it’s time for the mystery past to finally see the light of day. It is written in the third person and has Shan’s distinct style.

This book reads like a biography more than the early adventures of Larten Crepsley. I thought it lacked some of the fascinating and unexpected twists of the earlier series, though admittedly this could just be because I know how Crepsley’s story ends.

Shan shines a new light on some characters that you know from the Darren Shan Saga and introduces a host of new characters as well. You will learn a lot about characters you thought you knew and it will help you to look at them a little differently.

Don’t be discouraged if you haven’t read the Darren Shan Saga because this is the prequel series so it perfectly sets the scene to roll right on through to the Cirque Du Freak.

I can not wait to get my hands on Brothers To The Death – the last part of the Crepsley series. Thank you Darren Shan for such an intriguing read.

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