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Kin [Mass Market Paperback]

Peter Dickinson
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

June 3 2003
It is two hundred thousand years ago. A small group of children are cut off from their Kin, the Moonhawks, when they are driven from their "Good Place" by violent strangers. While searching for a new Good Place, they face the parched desert, an active volcano, a canyon flood, man-eating lions, and other Kins they've never seen before. Told from four points of view, with tales of the Kins' creation interspersed throughout, this epic novel humanizes early man and illuminates the beginning of language, the development of skills, and the organization of society. It is a triumphant book from one of the genre's most revered authors.

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Review

"It is a very fine and powerful work, and the matters it touches are universal" Philip Pullman, Guardian; "Not only a thrilling sweep of ideas and images; Dickinson has also created a completely believable and compelling culture and history from a period which has left virtually no trace. Mary Hoffman, Daily Telegraph; "Although Dickinson has already won many prizes, this book is one of his finest achievements yet." Nicholas Tucker, Independent" --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Peter Dickinson is one of the UK's most acclaimed children's writers. He has won the Carnegie Medal twice, for City of Gold and Tulku, the Whitbread Children's Award twice, for AK and Tulku, and the Guardian Children's Fiction Award for The Blue Hawk. He is the author of many books for children, teenagers and adults. He was one of the three shortlisted candidates for the first Children's Laureate, alongside Anne Fine and Quentin Blake, and was shortlisted for the International Hans Christian Anderson Award in 2000. He lives in Hampshire. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Fingers pressed Suth's cheek, in the corner by the jawbone. Read the first page
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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Enchanting... Oct. 6 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book is probably one of the best books I have ever read. It is about a small group of children who become separated from their Kin, Moonhawk (the Kins are tribes, each named after an animal, for example the Monkey Kin.) They set out to find Good Places, where there is food and water. But a number of terrifying perils face them, including volcanoes, enchantments, and evil demon men. This book is also fascinating. Not a lot is known about this era, and Peter Dickinson has pieced together an enchanting four-part novel from fragments of evidence and his own wonderful imagination.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  13 reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enchanting... Oct. 6 2003
By "reader11278" - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book is probably one of the best books I have ever read. It is about a small group of children who become separated from their Kin, Moonhawk (the Kins are tribes, each named after an animal, for example the Monkey Kin.) They set out to find Good Places, where there is food and water. But a number of terrifying perils face them, including volcanoes, enchantments, and evil demon men. This book is also fascinating. Not a lot is known about this era, and Peter Dickinson has pieced together an enchanting four-part novel from fragments of evidence and his own wonderful imagination.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Kin Oct. 25 2009
By A Bookshelf Monstrosity - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
After reading a few just so-so books, I really wanted to get lost in a great tome of a story. The Kin was just the ticket. The book is actually four novels published in one volume, weighing in at just over 600 pages. The story is paced really well, so I would look up from reading and realize I had just knocked out 50 or 75 pages in no time. I'm a huge history fan and have always been interested in the history of early mankind. Set in prehistoric Africa, this novel imagines what life was like for the clans of people surviving in the African deserts.

The stories of Suth, Noli, Po, and Mana are interspersed with Oldtales, or creation stories about the Kin's First Ones, which I found to be really interesting and illuminating as to how the characters behaved and reacted to life in the wild. Each First One is an animal, such as a monkey or a pocupine, and each Kin is named after a First One. The mixture of myth and history was just perfect and very entertaining.

A most interesting aspect of this book is how Dickinson imagined communication between speaking and non-speaking humans. The four children the stories follow belong to the Moonhawk Kin, which consists of highly verbal humans. Along the way, they encounter the Porcupine Kin, who are nonverbal but are still very communicative through sounds and gestures. Some of the Moonhawks say that the Porcupine Kin are not really 'people' because they can't speak words, but others, particularly Noli, are convinced that the Porcupine are just as human as anyone else even though they are different.

All in all, this novel is a very interesting and thought-provoking work of 'prehistorical' fiction.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book ever. April 9 2005
By L. Hansen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This wonderful book used to consist of four smaller books describing the life of a tribe of early humans. I was lucky enough to come across a battered copy of Nora's tale in a used book store. After reading it I knew I had to get the other three books. The books were long out of print and I was unable to obtain any others until now. After rereading Nora's tale countless times, I was overjoyed to find a complete collection of the books in print. I was delighted with the story line which is an original historical fiction with a hint of fantasy. However, this book is by far Peter Dickinson's best. I was ghastly disappointed with all of his others.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ggof4incolo July 30 2009
By ggo4incolo - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
The book held my attention from the first page to the last. I spent many late nights after my homework was finished to get in some reading time. I enjoyed reading the story from the perspective of different memebers of the group. The story was not predictible and was intriguing. I was left wondering if the people wore clothing, or shoes or slept on furs, so some information was left to the imagination. It was a volumous book but a very good read.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not Just for "Young Adults" Dec 7 2006
By LionLady - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
The "Reading Level" for this book is listed as Young Adult, but the content, style and level of complexity should not be thought of as aimed at or restricted to teens. This is an outstanding and thoroughly engaging book, carefully thought out and written. If you have an interest in early man - or even if you don't -, you will enjoy it. I am far from being a teen, but I have re-read it several times for pure pleasure.
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