The days between Christmas and New Year's Eve are dead days, when spirits roam and magic shifts restlessly just beneath the surface of our lives. A magician called Valerian must save his own life within those few days or pay the price for the pact he made with evil so many years ago. But alchemy and sorcery are no match against the demonic power pursuing him. Helping him is his servant, Boy, a child with no name and no past. The quick-witted orphan girl, Willow, is with them as they dig in death fields at midnight, and as they are swept into the sprawling blackness of a subterranean city on a journey from which there is no escape.More
"Sedgwick's highly visual writing makes for a true movie of the mind. It is reminiscent of Philip Pullman's work, with each detail adding to the fullness of Sedgwick's alternative world....Sedgwick draws characters so magnetic that readers will find it hard to look away." (Booklist)
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Middling, and that's being nice.