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Published Nov. 11, 2006

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Gifts (2004) is a young adult fantasy novel by Ursula K. Le Guin. It is the first book in the Annals of the Western Shore trilogy, and is followed in the series by Voices. The story is set in a fictional world, in a barren and poverty-stricken region called the Uplands, some of whose inhabitants have hereditary magical gifts. The story follows the narrator Orrec, son of the leader of the domain of Caspromant, whose hereditary gift is the ability to "unmake", and Gry, the daughter of a neighboring domain, who can communicate with animals. Orrec's gift manifests late, and seems uncontrollable, and so he is blindfolded. Their families are caught up in the cycle of violent feuds and retribution that characterize Upland society in which the children are trying to find their place. The novel explores themes of violence and the abuse of power, as well as of coming …

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