The Tombs of Atuan

(Earthsea Cycle #2)

Mass market paperback, 146 pages

English language

Published Nov. 10, 1975 by Bantam Books.

ISBN:
9780553116007
OCLC Number:
29059632

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4 stars (10 reviews)

When young Tenar is chosen as high priestess to the ancient and nameless Powers of the Earth, everything is taken away - home, family, possessions, even her name. For she is now Arha, the Eaten One, guardian of the ominous Tombs of Atuan.

While she is learning her way through the dark labyrinth, a young wizard, Ged, comes to steal the Tombs' greatest hidden treasure, the Ring of Erreth-Akbe. But Ged also brings with him the light of magic, and together, he and Tenar escape from the darkness that has become her domain.

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Review of 'The Tombs of Atuan (Earthsea Cycle, #2)' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

The Tombs of Atuan is Book #2 in The Tales of Earthsea, a high fantasy series by Ursula K. Le Guin. Tombs is about a young girl named Tenar, who is taken from her home to become a priestess in the middle of a desert, where nothing ever seems to change, and the world outside is something evil, and to be feared.

I would have at first complained that the first 40% or so of The Tombs of Atuan is quite slow. And it’s true, I struggled to push forward. Comparing it to Ged’s adventure in The Wizard of Earthsea, to see a young girl taken from her home and turned into the head priestess/human goddess of darkness, things were bleak, and slow, and dull. But that was the point.

As I got to the middle, I ate the rest of the book up with vigor. I love Tenar. She …

Review of 'The Tombs of Atuan (Earthsea Cycle, #2)' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

This engaging story follows Arha, a child who is tragically taken from her loving mother to act as a high priestess in what was essentially a religous cult. She is separated from everyone else from an early age, and forced to lead a very narrow life that she has been indoctrinated to value. Then, just as she is coming of age, an intruder enters her domain. Fortunately, she is still young and curious (and, perhaps, lonely) enough to question him--and keep him alive instead of having him killed, as she is expected to do.

During this enlightenment, this intruder reminds Arha of her real name (her birth name), and explains his mission, helping her to see her life and surroundings more objectively. In the end, she makes her own decision. I don't think it's spoiling anything to say that this former priestess does escape her old life, but I'll leave …

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