Quick reviews for two young adult novels I read for the R.I.P. challenge.
Quirk Books, Philadelphia, 2011
An interesting book built around an intriguing idea. Old and unusual photographs inspired Ransom Riggs to write this novel featuring “peculiar” children stuck in time and filled with stories that turn out to be very real. And there are monsters.
Jacob Portman is an ordinary sixteen-year-old whose life suddenly takes a surprising turn. After many years of telling Jacob stories about some unusual photographs kept in an old cigar box, Abe Portman, Jacob’s grandfather dies under mysterious circumstances. The stress of that terrible night is almost too much. After sliding in and out of depression Jacob decides to visit Cairnholm Island, where many of his Grandfather’s wild stories took place, hoping to find some connection to the old man. At Cairnholm he discovers more than he bargained for.
Fast paced and well written, this scary fantasy moves from the present into the past and back again. The novel ends with the possibility that there are more adventures to come.
White Crow by Marcus Sedgwick
Roaring Brook Press, New York, 2011
Because of something in her past Rebecca is forced to move to the small town of Winterfold. Ferelith has lived in Winterfold all her life. Winterfold is slowly falling into the sea.
These two young women form a strange team, build a love-hate relationship, and through their dares and forfeits, unravel a mystery that has been hidden for over two centuries.
This gothic tale is a mix of present day and the past. Sedgwick tells the story from three points of view. Rebecca’s, Ferelith’s and a church pastor from 1798. It is a story filled with questions of life and life after death, of God and the Devil, and finally of love and faith in those we love.
I really liked this young adult horror tale. Several bloggers I trust have raved about Sedgwick’s writing and I can see why. I will be reading more of his work.
Both of these books were borrowed from my local library. If you have read either of them please leave a comment and I will link your reviews.