Published: 16th August 2012 by The Writer's Coffee Shop
Format: ARC, 404 pages
For the duration of her freshman year, Darcy Pennington agonized over the fate of her dear friend, the nark Yahto Veli, who sacrificed himself to the Oracle to set her free. As her third trip to camp, and to the magical land, approaches, Darcy wonders if she’s capable of the daring rescue she wants to embark upon, but soon realizes there’s much more at stake.
Her return to Cedar Cove Family Camp is marked by a mysterious disappearance, and in Alitheia a new message from the Oracle adds to the riddles that must be deciphered if they are to expel the dark evil that hovers over the land. The six friends and the alchemist Rubidius plan a sea journey that will take them beyond the borders of Alitheia, and into the realm of a legendary archipelago. Tellius winds up joining them as well and the foes they meet along the way are both deceptive and charming, while the Oracle’s riddles seem to dog them at every turn. Darcy is also hiding a secret from her best friend Sam that could test their friendship beyond the breaking point, and there’s an unexpected development in her relationship with Tellius that changes everything and makes her understand that the deepest scars sometimes cannot be seen.
Darcy isn’t sure if she’s prepared for another meeting with the Oracle, but if she wants to have any chance of saving her friend, she must try. To complicate matters, the evil they left behind in Alitheia has not remained dormant.
With each successive Gateway Chronicles book I find myself increasingly absorbed by the world and characters that Hoyle has created. The White Thread does not disappoint. Since readers are following the same six characters from the age of 11 to about 18, I expect we will get to see them grow up in extraordinary ways. The expansion of the world, to introduce us to some new places and cultures, is admirable and I enjoyed it thoroughly.
Darcy finally displays the maturity and forward thinking I always felt lacking in the other books, because now, as a fifteen year old, she has a lot more responsibility to shoulder. She’s nicer to her family, especially her brother, and isn’t annoyed by everything all the time. This is not to say that she doesn’t make mistakes, but at least now Darcy is thinking through many of her decisions and being a lot more open with those around her. I continue to like Tellius – when I reviewed The Oracle I said that I can see him becoming a great man and think that romance between him and Darcy would be awesome, and I think my point was proved in this book. I really liked Perry’s storyline as well since it shows that sometimes we can mistakenly believe we want something, but when we get it we realise we didn’t.
The narks continue to be the most awesome creatures and ensemble of characters in this world, and I enjoyed getting to know more about their culture. Yahto Veli is still incredible – the author manages to create his presence throughout the book even though he is trapped by the Oracle. We also get to see a bit more of the Oracle, and it was enlightening to say the least. There is also the introduction of a few new cultures, and a new Goddess or spirit, and an air spirit (she was pretty cool).
The Six continue to engage and interest me with their adventures in Alitheia, and I think a lot of people would be pleasantly surprised by the series. The White Thread has been the book I have enjoyed the most so far because of the growth of the characters, and the cliff-hanger ending has me pining for more!