Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta.
Candlewick Press: Somerville, MA, 2010.
Originally bp Viking/Penguin Books: Australia, 2008.
Michael Printz Award author

The kingdom of Lumatere was taken over 10 years ago by a pretender to the throne and propped up by neighboring kingdoms after the King and Queen and their children were slaughtered. Many of the citizens are in exile after fleeing the ensuing carnage. The borders have been magically sealed by a curse through those years and will be until the rightful heir returns. Finnikin of the Rock is the story of the heir coming home to the kingdom. A scrap of an orphan girl draws Finnikin, the son of the King's Guard, to her to set in motion the events needed to return: gathering the King's Guard and soldiers, the First Man (the King's adviser), the heir, the spiritual leader, and as many exiles as are willing to return.

From the beginning, it is obvious that Evanjalin is a character of great heart and power. She is a dreamwalker/seer, and it is her unswerving conviction and path that everyone follows, even when it appears that she has not told the truth. Through the journey, Finnikin fights her control of the group, but also comes to see a great depth of soul in her. She is guided by memories and feelings more intense than others could guess. A relationship develops between them until the truth is revealed, leaving Finnikin with heartache and uncertainty.

Much has been made about this book being a departure for the author, in that it is fantasy. I have found in my reading that fantasy books have some of the deepest realism of all (at least the best fantasy does). I haven't read her other books, but am more inclined to do so now. Finnikin of the Rock is realism, no matter the backdrop. As with other fantasy, I like the undercurrent of issues related to events of our times. The exiles feel very much like what is going on in the United States; I don't know about other places. Marchetta writes about a lack of faith and displaced people without a community waiting desperately for someone to lead them back to a more positive life. She also puts in a word about wars. The coming home is a whole process. It takes a while and successive events for people to believe that it is even possible. Then certain criteria must be met to fulfill the prophecy. The faith in Evanjalin and the idea of regaining the kingdom builds as the journey progresses. There is a point when the whole plan could fall apart, even after how far they've come. It is such a huge thing that human frailty can be the undoing. Yes, this feels much like what is happening politically today. Sadness and frustration with what we have lost. Knowing the possibilities are still there, but who is worthy to lead? Do we have the strength as a people anymore to rebuild? The author is Australian not American, but it would not surprise me if many places are having similar struggles. Economic trends span the world, and the crux is an economic power struggle.

related-royalty, saving the kingdom, revolution, return to normalcy, heirs, romance

RSS Add to Stumble It! Add to Technorati Favorites
Email Updates
Kickstart Reading/50+ Transitional Books
Horizons Transitional Books
Horizons Transitional Books
BookAdvice Crosswords
Follow minerva66 at Twitter
Knock Your Socks Off Challenge

Recent NTugo Network Posts

    ©2006-2016 Advice, banner, and coding help given by Redwall_hp. Established May 2006.