This month’s edition of What We’re Reading comes from the wonderful and always-entertaining Suey, who is the blogger behind It’s All About Books. For those of you who haven’t visited Suey’s blog yet, do it — now. She shares honest book reviews from just about every genre, music suggestions, and funny tid-bits from her busy life as a mom of four. In between blogging, mothering, and leading a neighborhood book club, Suey somehow found time to put together a review for us on Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta.
In an effort to be more involved in the book blogging community, our What We’re Reading series will feature reviews from our favorite bloggers. We hope that these partnerships will introduce you to amazing book blogs you haven’t yet stumbled upon, and in turn, help the pile of books on your bedside table grow. Let us know what you think and be sure to check out It’s All About Books!
Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta
I really loved this YA fantasy book! To me, this is what a perfect fantasy book should be. The magic isn’t really over the top, the world building doesn’t take over the story, the characters are real, the politics aren’t complicated, the plot is intriguing, and the story is moving. Did I say I loved it? Well, I loved it.
The book starts out giving us a glimpse of some terrible event that happened a few years (10 or so I think) before the actual book events take place. Finnikin, who was a child at the time, is now a young man wandering the countryside with his mentor trying to round up their scattered people. Their kingdom has been shattered by this event, and in fact, has been cursed and shut off from the outside. So not only do we have the scattered refugees on the outsides, but there are also the lost people who were left inside the gates. What’s become of them? The question haunts our Finnikin.
As the story opens, Finnikin and Sir Topher (the mentor and former King’s First Man) arrive at a convent of sorts to answer a strange message Finnikin received about someone there with whom they need to consult. When they arrive, they find out it’s a young novice girl who has taken a vow of silence and who is having night visions that their prince is still alive and out there. They decide to take her with them so they can hopefully, finally, find the prince and restore their kingdom.
This is, to say the least, an unexpected turn of events, which, as you may guess, leads them to all sorts of adventures and twists and turns. Finnikin is at first repelled by this novice and feels like he doesn’t truly believe her, but as the story goes along and he learns more about her and realizes her true strength, they quickly form an attachment. Along the way, they pick up a stray thief boy, who causes them all sorts of trouble, but who in fact becomes a key player in their story. (The second book in the series is about this boy, called Froi of the Exiles, and was just released in March.)
This book is a lot of fun despite the tragic and sad subject matter and I would recommend it to both die hard fantasy lovers and newbies to the genre.
Have you already read Finnikin of the Rock, or does this make you want to pack your bag and head to Barnes and Noble to pick up a copy? Let us know in the comments below!
Image courtesy of GoodReads