Marianne Curley,
The Named
(Bloomsbury, 2002)

When Ethan was only 4 years old, he witnessed the murder of his elder sister. That event fragmented his family, driving his mother into periodic fits of depression and changing his father into a withdrawn, fragile man. But Ethan found a new life among the Guardians of Time, and for the last twelve years, he has been helping to guard the present and the future from the Order of Chaos by traveling through the past and preventing the Order's mischief. Now, at age 16, he has been given a promotion and an apprentice.

Isabel wakes one morning to find that overnight she has developed the ability to heal herself and others. But that's not the only strange thing, for when her brother's former best friend Ethan approaches her with a strange tale about Guardians of Time, she finds herself drawn into an adventure she could not have believed.

The Named is based on an interesting concept, that a force of gifted individuals guards History. However, none of these people is known to one another. A Guardian knows the Tribunal, the council that heads the Guard, and perhaps one or two other individuals, but no one else. The identities of the Guard are kept strictly confidential, so that a Guardian may even be living with another Guardian and the two of them will not know each other.

The story here is told from alternating first person points of view -- one chapter by Ethan, the next by Isabel. At first, it may seem a little confusing, but quickly resolves and becomes easy to follow.

The Named is an exciting, fast-paced story that will keep readers turning pages. According to the book jacket, it is the first book of a trilogy, so there is more to look forward to.

- Rambles
written by Laurie Thayer
published 14 February 2004

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