Hello, all! I hope that you are having a lovely week and soaking up these last days of summer!
One of the things I want to do with this blog is share reviews of books and movies with you all, and I decided that now is the time to start figuring out how to review things! 😉 I love helping people find their next great read, and I also love reading reviews to help me decide if a book or movie will be worth my time. I hope to write a lot of reviews and maybe even make a new page for them, but until then, I hope you enjoy my review of this wonderful book!
And now, without further ado, my thoughts on The Story Peddler by Lindsay A. Franklin!
Tanwen is a story peddler – someone who weaves the stories she spins into crystallized sculptures that she sells to put food in her mouth. Dreaming of greater things than her job of touring Tir with her cruel mentor, Tanwen wants to make her way to the capital city of Urian and become Royal Storyteller to the king. When a treasonous tale spills from her fingers on her tour, Tanwen becomes the king’s prey. Suddenly, a rebel band of weavers finds their way into life her as well. Tanwen encounters secrets and people that have been long suppressed – and discovers that they’re after her, too.
What I Liked:
Ohhhhh, mannnnn, this book was AMAZING! Here’s a short list of some of my favorite parts of this magical book:
- The world. Tir felt so real the way the author described it. I was pulled right into the setting, and the descriptions were breathtaking and vivid. Tir doesn’t feel like yet another rehashed medieval setting. Ms. Franklin makes it all her own. The political background was very intriguing and well-done. Also, I loved how there were enough different people groups to make it feel somewhat diverse but not too many that I felt confused. There were different skin colors and customs blended together to create wonderful and intriguing people groups and nations. Additionally, the creatures described were so interesting and had such cool names (fluffhoppers, painted-wings, etc.).
- The characters. Oh, my goodness, where do I start with the characters? They are such believable, fleshed-out people with their own distinct mannerisms and appearances. Tanwen is so adorably awkward and has her own distinct voice as she narrates the story. Mor is the perfect mix of snarky pirate and vulnerable young man. GRYFELLE. Oh, my heart. I want to give her a hug and make everything okay for her. Zelyth, Braith, Warmil…I could go on. Even the villainous characters were perfectly crafted to make you both despise their callousness and pity their brokenness. The only character I didn’t really like was Brac. I don’t even really know exactly why I didn’t like him…I just didn’t. He was annoying and kind of controlling, I guess…I totally did not think that he and Tanwen should be together. *shrugs*
- The point of view. When I first started the book, I noticed that the POV was kind of weird: it was 1st person for the main character, but it was 3rd person in other chapters for another main character. I thought that I would hate it, but I actually ended up appreciating that the author wrote it that way. It kept me from getting confused about who was talking.
- The magic system. SERIOUSLY, THIS MAGIC SYSTEM IS SO CREATIVE! Story weavers, colormasters, songspinners…it’s all so beautiful and well-done. The main thing I loved about the magic system was that all of these magical talents were clearly shown as being gifts from the Creator (the God-figure), and it was full of light and beauty.
- The message. There was one message in particular that really struck me, being a creative myself: “Art has a way of revealing truth.” YES. “Art” included the colormastery (a sort of painting gift), songspinning (basically singing 😉 ), and story weaving (my favorite! 😉 ). When you create, it always presents some sort of truth.
I could go on about what I loved about this book, but I’ll stop for now. 😉
What I Didn’t Like:
- The love-triangle-ish thing. I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a big fan of romance in books. This was not nearly enough to turn me out of the book (um, I LOVED the book! 😉 ), but this aspect of it still wasn’t my favorite. I think that the love-triangle is WAY overused in books. I didn’t like Brac that much because he seemed sort of…controlling, I guess. Then Tanwen got a crush on another character. However, I was pleased that the love-triangle-thing (okay, I don’t really know what else to call it, so please bear with me) was not a huge aspect of the story. So, yeah. 😉
Yes, there was pretty much only one thing that I didn’t like. 😉
Some characters drink wine and ale. There’s a mention of clandestine things going on between girls and lonely farm boys in the upper rooms of inns. Tanwen mentions a time Brac kissed another girl. One character has a mistress (but it’s only mentioned briefly, not described at all). A man makes unwelcome advances towards Princess Braith, kissing her twice against her will, flirting, and touching her face. Tanwen is kissed once.
Would I Recommend It?
YES YES YES. This book was SO good, guys. I thoroughly enjoyed it. There were a couple things that weren’t my favorite, but overall, The Story Peddler was a completely worthwhile read. I need the sequel NOW. 😉
I give The Story Peddler four out of five (4/5) stars and recommend it for ages 14 and up.
Have you read this book? If so, how did you like it? What did you think of the way I reviewed this book? Let me know in the comments!