Literature: Death Speaker
When he is kidnapped from the only home he has ever known, the nearly ten-year-old Mortimer is thrown into a desolate world attempting to continue on After the End. Not only is he the prisoner of the man who killed his guardian, but he is being brought to the mook's master, who is simply called The Master - not a good sign.Following after them is Ricker, an assassin Anti-Hero who has become a drifter after a Tragic Past that is revealed only in snatches of Bad Dreams and memories. The assassin himself is haunted by a Living Shadow he calls Shadow, who spends the majority of the time making sarcastic comments or insulting him because of his life's choices.The first book in the trilogy, Death Speaker: Hunt, follows Ricker as he chases down Mortimer, a human boy mutated by nuclear radiation. He finds the boy just as the wires that have tied his mouth shut since his birth are crawling out of his face like worms (definitely potential Nightmare Fuel there - YMMV). Losing these wires gives Mortimer the ability to speak (and the author seems almost to suggest a compulsion on occasion). Because he is a Death Speaker, the sound of the boy's voice will kill anyone who hears it.The story continues with Mortimer, Ricker, and Shadow working together against Hester, The Dragon, who is hunting them down to bring Mortimer back to her Master. Throughout it, there continues the conflict of Ricker being an assassin hired to kill Mortimer and his continued belief that all Death Speakers should be put down. He also spends the entire novel undergoing Character Development, as he is thrown into situation after situation that tests his resolve, beliefs, and morals. Nevermind the nightmares he continually has, or the headaches that arise each time he starts to remember something that he's apparently not supposed to.The story ends on the perfect note of solving one of the main problems of the conflict beyond the assassin and his target, while bringing a whole number of other issues to the fore to be dealt with in the following books.The second book of the trilogy, Death Speaker: The God Stone, is presently being written and promises to answer a number of questions about various characters, and possibly bring up more. The third and final book in the trilogy is supposedly being written in tandem with the second, but Casey Fry has refrained from revealing the title of that, as yet.