Fourteen-year-old Zoon Razdan is witty, intelligent and deeply perceptive. She also has a deep connection with magic. She was born into it.
The house that she lives in is fantastical—life thrums through its wooden walls—and she can talk to everything in it, from the armchair and the fireplace to the books, pipes and portraits!
But Zoon doesn’t know that her beloved house once contained a terrible force of darkness that was accidentally let out by one of its previous owners. And when the darkness returns, more powerful and malevolent than ever, it is up to her to take her rightful place as the Guardian of the house and subsequently, Kashmir.
The House That Spoke is the debut novel of 15 year old Zuni Chopra & published by Penguin Randomhouse India. She has published 2 books of poetry prior to this novel. Her favourite authors include Neil Gaiman & Lewis Carrol. She lives in Mumbai with her parents, older brother & their 6 dogs.
Our protagonist of the story is 14 year old Zoon Razdan who lives with her mom in her ancestral house, but there’s a twist! The house & Zoon can communicate with each other, because of some magical powers her family holds. The house is an intricate part of her life so when her mother decides to sell it & move away from Kashmir to a peaceful environment, it breaks her & she tries to sabotage the plan first by trying to get Tathi, her grandmother into it & then herself. A day before she would turn 15 a Pandora’s box of secrets & magic opens to her which reveals her destiny to fight the darkness which has caused all the havoc in the valleys of Kashmir & the death of her father. Will she be able to defeat Kruhen Chay, the darkness? Or will it be successful in spreading hatred & darkness? Get the book to know..
Let’s first begin with the fact that this novel is the debut work of a 15 year old author & the simplicity with which she has been able to depict the situation in Kashmir to a fantasy is astounding. There are some parts of the story which needed a bit more detailing like the bond between Zoon & her mother or Zoon & Altaf (a neighbourhood friend) but that would be my only critique. I fell in love with the cover as well as the illustrations in the book, the title is apt & the editing has no faults either. I can’t wait to read the author’s future works. You guys shouldn’t miss this one!