Book of a Thousand Days is a young adult fantasy novel by Shannon Hale.
It is based on the Brothers Grimm fairy tale Maid Maleen. Dashti, a mucker from steppes of the Eight Realms, begins a diary as she looks for a job after her mother dies of illness.
Eventually, she finds and accepts a position as the new maid of Lady Saren, the youngest child of the lord of Titor's Garden. Saren has defied her father's declaration that she will marry Lord Khasar of Thoughts of Under and revealed that she is engaged to the young Khan Tegus of Song for Evela.
To tame his daughter, Saren's father shuts her and Dashti, the only maid willing to accompany Saren, in a tower far away from his city and surrounded by guards.
Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale - Book Review
He claims he will only release them after seven years, or if Saren will relent and marry Khasar. While isolated from the rest of the world, Dashti realizes the fragility of Saren's mind and heart and does her best to soothe Saren through stories and songs.
Book of a thousand days plot summary
When Khan Tegus visits them, Saren unexpectedly refuses to speak with him and orders Dashti to impersonate her. As Tegus cannot see into the tower, Dashti reluctantly agrees and a friendship develops between them when he returns for several more visits, including one where he gives Saren a cat whom Dashti names "My Lord.
The guards around the tower fail to respond to the girls' cries and My Lord disappears from the tower during a night when they hear the howls of a wolf, causing the rats to infest the tower. Khasar's appearances cause Saren to become withdrawn from deep-seated fear, in spite Dashti's efforts. As their food storages dwindle, Dashti finds a weakened portion of the tower where the rats have entered and breaks through the wall to freedom.
Once out, they discover that Titor's Garden has been destroyed and they discover that Khasar has been waging war across the Eight Realms. Together, they travel to Song for Evela, which has remained untouched by Khasar so far, and Dashti finds them jobs as scrubbers in the kitchens of Khan Tegus.
Though Dashti continues to sing healing songs to calm and soothe her, Saren's condition does not improve, and she refuses to reveal her identity to Khan Tegus. When it is revealed that Dashti can sing songs of healing, she is hired to take care of and heal Tegus, and the two slowly fall in love. While Dashti thrives as a servant, Saren grows increasingly resentful and unhappy, especially when My Lord finds them again. Dashti returns the cat to Saren, who begins to grow more confident in herself through the cat's unconditional love.
As Khasar begins to approach Song for Evela, Tegus agrees to a betrothal to Lady Vachir, the ruling lady of the realm Beloved of Ris, in order to save the remaining realms. Desperate to save the realms, Dashti tries to persuade Saren to reveal herself, but her fear overwhelms her.
She orders Dashti to impersonate her again, and for once Dashti is stalwart in her refusal. However, when Khasar threatens to level the city unless they give up Lady Saren, Dashti relents and presents herself as Lady Saren to Tegus and his ministers, thinking to protect her lady. Dashti finally coaxes Saren to speak of her previous traumatic meeting with Khasar, allowing Dashti to form a plan to defeat him.
She risks herself before Khasar's armies, using her song to reveal his true nature: he is actually a skin-changer who becomes a wolf. Khasar's armies turn against him, and he is killed.
One Hundred Years of Solitude
Dashti returns to the palace, prepared to leave after uniting Saren and Tegus despite her own feelings for him, but is exposed as a mucker by the vindictive Lady Vachir after she steals Dashti's diary.
Saren finds the courage to stand up for herself and saves Dashti with help and encouragement from Tegus.
Dashti and Tegus marry. Friendship and Love Dashti is a very honest yet humorous character.
Throughout the novel she is motivated by her love for her mother to reach out and help others. When she first meets Lady Saren, who lies and weeps on her bed, she does not judge her, but looks for the good qualities in her. Through Dashti's patience and perseverance, she develops a friendship with Saren.
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At some points, Dashti does not tell Saren certain things, for fear it might further aggravate Saren's fragile mental state. Dashti even risks her life by posing as Saren and taking a stand against Lord Khasar.
Dashti's friendship of Saren eventually turns the events at the end of the novel, in which Saren declares that Dashti is her sister. Friendship is also evident in the relationship between Dashti and Khan Tegus. When Dashti, posing as Lady Saren, talks to him at the tower, they joke and laugh.
They create a friendship that eventually turns into a romantic love.
When things take a bad turn at the end, Khan Tegus finds every way possible to marry Dashti, and after he and Saren convince the chiefs Dashti is innocent, friendship and love win in the end.
Loyalty and Trust Dashti is loyal to Saren, yet she confides and puts all of her true thoughts into her journal, the book that the reader holds.
It is in this journal we learn of Dashti's true emotions and thoughts towards the world around her. However honest her thoughts are, she is still loyal to Lady Saren on the outside. By the end of the book, Saren trusts Dashti. Tegus struggles with trusting Dashti after he finds out who she really is.
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But because of her loyalty to him, he finds his loyalty in her and rescues her. Time The title itself is an acknowledgment to this theme. Dashti mentions many times that things will turn out right with time, or that Saren will be healed with time. Dashti doesn't seem to mind being locked seven years in a tower until she realizes Saren's true character. Throughout all of this, she exhibits extreme patience. When she risks herself against Lord Khasar at the end, she plays with time in revealing his true character as a wolf.
Standing naked before him is almost a way to spite the way he stood naked before Lady Saren and revealed who he really was, thus bring up the past. Tegus also brings up the past with Dashti, reminiscing on how far they've come.
Book of a Thousand Days
The novel has generally received positive reviews. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. PWxyz LLC. Retrieved 22 July Children and Young Adult Literature portal. Categories : American novels American fantasy novels Dystopian novels American young adult novels.