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A girls love for her raven may put her life in jeopardy in this tightly woven and carefully constructed fantasy (Kirkus Reviews).
In Kearas world, every child has a darkbeasta creature that takes dark emotions like anger, pride, and rebellion. Kearas darkbeast is Caw, a raven, and Keara can be free of her worst feelings by transferring them to Caw. He is her constant companion, and they are magically bound to each other until Kearas twelfth birthday. For on that day Keara must kill her darkbeastthat is the law. Refusing to kill a darkbeast is an offense to the gods, and such heresy is harshly punished by the feared Inquisitors.
But Keara cannot imagine life without Caw. And she finds herself drawn to the Travelers, actors who tour the country performing revels. Keara is fascinated by their hints of a grand life beyond her tiny village. As her birthday approaches, Keara readies herself to leave childhoodand Cawbehind forever. But when the time comes for the sacrifice, will she be able to kill the creature that is so close to her? And if she cannot, where will she turn, and how can she escape the Inquisitors?