By Tamora Pierce

Place: Publisher & Year: New York: Random House, 2009

Genres: Fantasy, mystery, paranormal

Series: Beka Cooper trilogy; 2

ISBN: 9780375814693

Intended audience: Young adult

Number of pages: 551 (includes Glossary, Cast of Characters, and Notes about the Provost’s Guard)

Setting: Corus and Port Caynn, Tortall

Time period: 247 H.E. (medieval)

Plot summary: No longer a Puppy, Beka Cooper is now a full fledged Dog (Provost Guard) patrolling the streets of Corus’s Lower City.  Her biggest problem as a first year Dog is her lack of ability to keep a partner for very long.  When her latest partner walks out on her, Cooper is teamed up with her old trainers Goodwin and Tunstall.  Even though she wants her own partner, this arrangement works well for Cooper, especially when one of Cooper’s good friends has a problematic encounter involving counterfeit coins.  With Goodwin and Tunstall as partners, Cooper can do some real Dog work for a change and try to learn where the fake coins are originating.

Appeal factors:

Pacing: While the story is a bit slower in the beginning, this is a fast paced book.  The second half of the book seems to move twice as fast as the first half.

Characterization: The story is told in first person by Beka through her journal.  Many characters from Terrier have smaller roles in this story.  The most important new characters in this story are Achoo, the scent hound, and Dale Rowan, a gambler with an interest in Beka.

Frame: While the story begins in Corus, most of the action takes place in Port Caynn – a city along the coast where Beka has only visited briefly in the past.  The frame for this book is unfamiliarity; Beka is in a new city, which is run quite differently than Corus, and has new responsibilities as a dog handler.

Story line: An action-packed, engrossing story which emphasizes the consequences of one’s actions and inactions.

Subject headings:

From PCPL:

Counterfeits and counterfeiting — Fiction.

Police — Fiction.


Similar authors: Kristin Cashore, Robin McKinley, Patricia Wrede

Personal notes: I loved this book!  I think it’s even better than Terrier.

Other (themes, diversity): Diversity – female guards/ officers, paranormal abilities, transvestite, bardash: male homosexual, street children

While Beka has overcome much of her fear of talking to new people in this story, she has a new challenge to overcome – keeping a rein on her temper and learning when it is not in her best interest to speak her mind.

Terrier won the 2009 West Australian Young Readers’ Book Award for older readers

Tamora Pierce’s website


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