Tamora Pierce’s Terrier has been described as a police procedural for young adults. Since I enjoy criminal shows and mysteries this could be why I liked this book so much. The story centers on Beka Cooper, a trainee in the Provost Guard in the land of Tortall. The story is related through Beka’s journal. As a young child, Beka, intent on rescuing her mother and family from a “rusher” – a criminal, manages to assist the Lord Provost in capturing a notorious gang of criminals. As a reward, the Lord Provost moves Beka’s family into his home and provides training of one sort or another for Beka and her siblings. Beka decides to become part of the Provost Guard – also known as The Dogs. As a trainee, she is a Puppy.
Pierce paints a wonderfully colorful picture of a young girl just wanting to do a good job and to provide justice for her people – the members of the Lower City. She earns the nickname Terrier for digging in and never letting go. Through the course of the book we learn a lot about Beka and her friends. And we are right with her as she, with their help, solves two major mysteries. Mystery and a little bit of teenage angst, what more could you want in a young adult novel – oh wait, there’s magic as well. Tortall is not only full of rogues, but mages as well. In fact, Beka has some of her own special magic. She hears the voices of the dead – a long ago Ghost Whisper if you will. Adding to the story mix is Beka’s strange purple eyed cat, Pounce. With those eyes, he’s more than just a cat.
This was a wonderfully gripping read. I do not know why I had not picked up this book before now. Of course, now I’m hooked on yet another series. At this rate, my to read pile is going to be taller than I am.
Currently Reading: The Hair Raising Joys of Raising Boys by Dave Meurer
Audio Book: Gwenhwyfar: The White Spirit by Mercedes Lackey