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Thread: News and reviews
August 17th, 2005, 03:55 PM #16
August 27th, 2005, 05:22 AM #17
(Whatever Kliatt is, I'm not sure..)
Croggon, Alison. The Naming
Kliatt, *July, 2005 *by Lesley Farmer
CROGGON, Alison. The naming. (The First Book of Pellinor.) Candlewick. 492p. map. c2005. 0-76362639-2. $1799. JS
The first book of a projected quartet, The Naming refers to Maerad's self-discovery. A slave in a drinkwater village, 16-year-old Maerad confronts mysterious Bard Cadvan. Together they escape to the local School of Bards, where Maerad experiences the first kindness since the time her mother died, other than harp lessons from another renegade Bard. Cadvan encourages Maerad to leave this haven for the questionable trek to the powerful city of Norloch so she can fulfill her destiny. What Cadvan and his associates discern is Maerad's gift: a prophesied Bard. On her part, Maerad has a hard time believing this status. Still, as Cadvan fights evil Hulls and wers, Maerad finds herself saving her mentor and savoring her abilities.Spoiler:In the process, Maerad also finds her long-lost younger brother. When her status is denied by a corrupt and chauvinistic Bard who harmed Maerad's mother, Maerad has gained enough self-confidence to battle the enemy.
This fantasy is a solid winner. The characters are well developed, and the plot twists keep the reader engaged. The author couches this story as a found document, and readers may well think that a hidden culture has come to light in this story because the atmosphere is well established. Only close analysis of the "bibliography" (e.g., Pimon and Huster publishers in Toronto) hints at the fantastic basis of this tale. Dr. Lesley Farmer, Lib. Scvs., CSULB, Long Beach, CA
August 27th, 2005, 05:40 AM #18
New England Booksellers Review (Spring)
The Naming: First Book of Pellinor
by Alison Croggon
Primary audience teen girls, some teen boys
Notable for language, motifs of classic fantasy, interesting setting, imagination
I really liked this tale of orphaned child , Maerad, who grows up in a terrible "dark" place until a mysterious stranger appears and convices her to escape with him. Then begins a wondrous tale of high fantasy with familiar elements like the battles of Light vs Dark characters/ creatures, sung verses of the Bard which add to to history of the tale, special namings, memories regained after a long dormancy, the mentor who guides and teaches, the long journey fraught with peril. The story has layers of discoveries to be made as Maerad, feisty in her own right, places her trust in Cadvan, one of the most powerful Bards in Lirigon, and endures all sorts of trials in her long journey to seek the truth about her heritage and make her way in the world. We know by the ending that there is a lot more in store for Maerad and we can't wait to take the journey with her! This is a very "meaty" story for readers who like to be completely immersed in another life that seems all too real. It is obvious that Croggon wrote this story after years of mulling it about in her mind. The invented history that accompanies the story is a marvelous accompaniment to a tale whose wonderful imagery and realistic details make for a truly rich read!
Reviewed by Sue Carita,The Toadstool Bookshop, Milford, NH
The Naming: First Book of Pellinor
by Alison Croggon
Audience: Fans of Tamora Pierce, fans of Shero books, fans of fantasy
Okay, I could say, "They had me at hello", but what I mean is, Candlewick had me at the quote from Tamora Pierce on the back of the ARC recommending this title. It's funny, because usually it bothers me when publishers point out that a prominent author has given a quote to go on a book, and, yet, having TP's stamp of approval made me dive into this story. It's definitely for young adults, older middle grade readers, because it's dense, thick, filled with words, a good book to sink your teeth into. It's about this girl Maerad who is a slave in a far away little hovel and one day as she is milking the cows, she is discovered by Cadvan, one of the great Bards of the kingdom who takes her away with him, because he recognizes in her that she has great powers and is also a bard (bards here are more than just musicians, they are the ruling class).
The journey they undertake is long and arduous, outrunning evil at every turn. Cadvan has been on a mission, because dark forces are taking over the world and the bards must mount a battle campaign to combat this evil. Throughout this Maerad comes into her own. A sixteen year old girl who has never had the luxury of a bath, has never learned to read. As she discovers the niceties of society,she is also trained in swordplay, taught to read, and is prepared to become a bard, so that she can fulfill a destiny she's not sure is hers and she's not sure she wants.
The same qualities I love in Tamora Pierce's books are evident in this book. I love Maerad's character. I love that she must undergo grueling tests of her courage and strength. She is trained in all sorts of things to prepare her for battle on many fronts. Through it all, she develops a circle of close friends, and she is above all a good person. I think if you are the type of person that had issues with Eragon as in being too similar to Tolkien, then you'd probably have even more issues with this book, because even I, now that I have seen the movies (No, sorry, I haven't read the books), can recognize similar characters, etc., but I still really, really liked it. *Of course*, it's the first in a planned quartet. The author is Australian.
Reviewed by Lisa Dugan, Koen Book Distributors
Rated: For Tamora Pierce fans, I'd rate it a 8.5-9; for others, 7.5-8
September 21st, 2005, 05:00 PM #19
...and another starred review, this one from the School Library Journal -
*CROGGON, Alison. The Naming. 492p. (Pellinor Series, Bk. #1). map. appendix. notes. CIP. Candlewick. 2005. RTE $17.99. ISBN 0-7636-2639-2. LC 2004045165.
Gr 7 Up–In this first volume in a projected quartet, Croggon has created a world that is both authentic and exotic, welcoming and frightening. When 16-year-old Maerad meets a man named Cadvan, she is catapulted from her life as a slave to an epic destiny. Cadvan is a Bard, one of the magically gifted Starpeople, and he begins to teach her about her own gifts and abilities. He believes her to be the prophesied One who will oppose the Nameless, the dark power working toward the destruction of the Bards and the Balance of the world. As Maerad and Cadvan travel, they join forces with Hem, a mysterious orphan, and learn that the Nameless’s influence reaches far into the world of the Bards. Encounters with great mythic figures of their world and threatening evil forces add to the epic flavor of their journey. Maerad’s story is presented as a translation of the great epic of a lost civilization, and explanatory appendixes add to this fantasy’s realistic feel. Maerad is a strong, bold, and appealing character, and her lack of knowledge about her world provides a framework for Croggan’s background explanations. Supporting characters, including the Bards and those who oppose them, are given realistic traits and flaws. While some coincidences in the plot may stretch readers’ belief, they are integral to the story. Maerad seems a kindred spirit to Tamora Pierce’s Alanna, and her story will find a welcoming audience among readers looking for a challenging and fully realized epic adventure.–Beth L. Meister, Pleasant View Elementary School, Franklin, WI
Just so I don't get a big head, I see the latest reader review on amazon.com says The Naming is the most boring book of all time...well, you can't please all of the people all of the time..
September 22nd, 2005, 08:23 AM #20
Wow! That's really nice and it managed to explain alot without giving too much away! I've read the Alanna series by Tamora Pierce and although i can see similarities i have to say i love Maerad and Pellinor more!
September 22nd, 2005, 01:25 PM #21
That's really good Well you don't have to please all people all the time, only us and your doing a very good job of it! So i just thought we better say thankyou for that
September 22nd, 2005, 02:23 PM #22
i like the gift better than alanna by tamora pierce.... but alanna isnt that far behind it was a very nice review
October 1st, 2005, 12:12 PM #23
Alanna? what kind of stupid name is that!
i dont even have to read that to know that its no way as good as the gift.
youre silly for even mentioning it
October 1st, 2005, 01:01 PM #24Originally Posted by ~claire~
October 2nd, 2005, 09:29 AM #25
October 2nd, 2005, 09:50 AM #26
hmmmmmm i may just give it a try if you people are so keen on it *rush out to buy it* maybe...
October 2nd, 2005, 09:51 AM #27
October 3rd, 2005, 06:02 AM #28
October 3rd, 2005, 11:30 AM #29
- Join Date
- Sep 2005
wow,guys,lets not start an argument.yes,the gift is brillant but if some1 also likes another book we should respect their opinion,i know i like books that aren't by alison.so chill ok?right well...
October 3rd, 2005, 01:15 PM #30
i think i agree...