Skin Hunger masterfully blends two seemingly unrelated stories together.
Hahp: a boy who feels like a failure and that he might be better off dead, is sent away to a school where he must acquire the courage and skills to fight for his life.
Sadima: raised in seclusion by an over-protective but emotionally distant father has an unearthly gift of communicating with animals. When she sets off to live in the city of Limori, where she feels like she fits in, she faces Somiss, a heartless wizard and and his indentured apprentice. She must choose between leaving the man she loves but can never have, or remaining in order to help abate Somiss' cruelty.
These two story lines converge, seemingly unrelated until little by little you see how they fit together. Both story lines pulled me in and enchanted me. I didn't want to put the book down and I wanted to keep reading more. I stayed up late until my red, burning eyes couldn't stay open any longer. I'm looking forward to the next one. Critics call this book "dark" and in many aspects it is. I'm not usually one for "dark" stories but this one was so well done, that I didn't view it as "dark", but rather a compelling and well told story about hardship and difficult circumstances.