Reviewed by: SingleEyePhotos
Approximate word count: 35-40,000 words
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Marilyn Peake is the author of several novels in both the adult science fiction and children’s/YA fantasy genres. She has won several awards and honorable mentions for her writing. The Fisherman’s Son is the first book in a trilogy. For more, visit Marilyn’s website.
His mother newly dead, his father an alcoholic, Wiley O’Mara retreats into his own world. Given a golden cup with an enigmatic verse engraved on it by an otherworldly apparition, he begins a quest for a lost world and to save its prince.
This is definitely a YA fantasy. The writing is smooth and simple. Short, declarative sentences are used. There isn’t a lot of character development or depth. The world is very much our own, with the faerie element only occasionally intruding. Yet it’s not overly simplistic. The story has all the classic elements of the Quest with an unlikely hero, an otherworldly intercessor, monsters, talking animals that help the hero, and a drowned kingdom.
Wiley is a character that many middle-grade readers will relate to. He’s a good guy in a hard world, at the mercy of a frequently absent father and the goodwill of neighbors. When no one else is around to help him, he takes matters into his own hands, and shows character beyond his 12 years. The faerie cup provides him with an avenue of escape. Eldon the dolphin and Beluga the white whale fill quasi-parental roles, helping Wiley learn self-confidence and courage.
Since this is the first book in a trilogy, it does leave unresolved questions and threads of the story, though the ending is not a cliffhanger, per se. Based on the storyline of the first book, it will be necessary to read all three books in order to get the complete tale.
I would judge this book to be intended for the younger members of the ‘YA’ demographic. Teens and adults may find it just a little too simple and uncomplicated for their tastes.
None whatsoever. This was excellently formatted for the Kindle and I did not notice any typos.
Rating: **** 4 stars