The Keeping Place

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The Keeping Place
Sleeping girl with red hair
Second Edition Penguin Cover
Author Isobelle Carmody
Country Australia
Language English
Series Obernewtyn Chronicles
Genre Fantasy, Science fiction novel, Post-apocalyptic fiction
Publisher Viking Press Australia
Publication date
Media type Print (paperback)
Pages 754
ISBN 0-14-029579-8
OCLC 48607283
Preceded by Ashling
Followed by The Stone Key

The Keeping Place is a science fiction novel by Isobelle Carmody, set in a post apocalyptic world. It is the fourth book in the Obernewtyn Chronicles.


After a kidnapping, the Misfit community at Obernewtyn are forced to join the rebellion against the totalitarian Council, using their extraordinary mental abilities. Yet Elspeth must also seek out clues left by a long-dead seer, Kasanda, necessary to her quest to destroy the Beforetime weaponmachines. When one is hidden in the past, Elspeth must travel the Dreamtrails, stalked by a terrifying beast, with Maruman, her cat, as guide and protector. Only now can she learn more of the Beforetime Misfits and their enemy, Govamen, and realise her quest is intimately linked with the Misfit's Obernewtyn - its past and its future.[1]


The Misfits at Obernewtyn are all experiencing dreams and nightmares in which they are terrorized by a dragon, Dragon's form on the Dreamtrails. Dragon herself remains in a comatose state and is unable to be reached mentally by the healers. Her strong aura causes all around her in Obernewtyn to experience nightmares. Rushton, Master of Obernewtyn and Elspeths betrothed, is kidnapped while returning from a meeting with the rebels in Sutrium. The Misfits receive a letter enclosing that Rushton will lose his life if the Misfits were not to join the rebellion. They immediately perceive it must be a rebel who has kidnapped their Master as Rushton had refused letting the Misfits join the rebellion. However, under Elspeths command, the Misfits join the rebellion, offering limited aid, only to be betrayed by the Misfit-hating rebel, Malik in a decoy scheme involving soldierguards. There was significant loss of life for beasts, Misfits and soldierguards alike. This bloodshed would have been greater if it weren't for Swallow, a pureblood gypsy recently appointed as D'rekta, 'King' of the Twentyfamily gypsies. The rebellion was won on the east coast of the land without trouble from the Landfolk, but the west coast remained occupied by the Council after a traitor spread the news of the rebellion to the Header Faction. The Misfits could not identify the traitor, most likely because he or she wore a demon band, a tainted band made by the Herders to ward off evil; that ironically blocked Misfits' mental probes. To the Misfit's surprise, Rushton was found in one of the abandoned Herder cloisters in Sutrium. While not physically harmed, he had been drugged heavily and was subject to delirium and convulsions. After returning to Obernewtyn with unconscious Rushton, Elspeth travels to the City under Tor to witness for herself the discovery of a glass monument made by Cassy, a Beforetimer, who Elspeth had encountered in multiple dreams. The glass monument was, to everyone's intense shock, of Elspeth herself, who concluded that Cassy must have had futuretelling abilities. Elspeth later returns to Obernewtyn to find herself summoned onto the Dreamtrails by the oldOnes. Elspeth enters Dragon's mind, with Maruman, having been told by the latter that they would find Rushton. Elspeth learns about Dragon's fateful past, and realizes that the cause of her delirium lies in the loss of her beloved Mother, the Red Queen. Inside Dragon's mind, Elspeth encounters and saves Rushton, who is in the form of a wounded bear. After she leaves Dragon's mind, Dragon is awakened from her coma but has no recollection of her life at Obernewtyn. Rushton recovered from his soul-less state, buy his recovery would be long-winded. Elspeth now knows that she must continue her quest for the five signs left for her by the Beforetimer, Kasanda.

Publication history[edit]

Single Book Publications:[2] [3][4]

Year Country Publisher Media Type Cover Designer Pages ISBN
1999 AUS Penguin Books Paperback Miles Lowrey, Ellie Exarchos 754 0-14-029579-8
2007 AUS Penguin Books Paperback Les Petersen 754 9780140295795
2008 US Random House Paperback 553 9780375857706
2011 UK Bloomsbury Publishing Paperback 768 9781408806999

Combined Volumes:[5]

Year Country Title Publisher Media Type Cover Designer Pages ISBN
2012 US The Dreamtrails (Book 3&4) Bluefire Paperback Les Petersen 928 9780307932198


External links[edit]