Monday, October 22, 2012

The Fiddler's Gun

Author: A.S. Peterson
Number of Pages: 293
Reading Level: 9th grade and up
Series: Fin's Revolution #1
Reading Time: 3 days

Seventeen-year-old Fin Button is fed up with orphanage life. She's tired of the old sisters bossing her around and telling her to act like a "lady." She's tired of the monotony. She misses her fiancée Peter, who left the orphanage to establish a home for them. In fact, the only good thing about the orphanage is her growing relationship with the old cook, Bartimaeus.

But when an incredible turn of events lands her on a privateer's ship, running from the law with a dark secret, she's scared that her life will never be how she wanted it to be.

I've been reading so many children's books lately that it was nice to get into a book that was geared toward adults. A.S. Peterson's writing is phenomenal. I found myself getting pulled along by the lull of the language. It was almost poetic. When he writes, you can feel the ocean surging underneath you, hear the clang of swords in battle, and smell the smoke from freshly shot cannons.

More than the story itself though, I loved the protagonist. Fin Button is an incredible character. She's one of those characters that feels like a friend right off the bat. In a world where feminism has taken off, I was afraid that Fin would be just another tomboyish, never-getting-married, take-care-of-myself girl that has become all to stereotypical these days. She wasn't though. Fin desperately wanted to get married. She was tough and confident without coming off as feminist.

The other characters were just as endearing. In fact, one of my favorites was Armand Defain, the Frenchman of dubious intent and even more questionable roots. You really know nothing about him, but you love how suave he is, how gentlemanly on the outside when you know from the glint in his eye that he is not all he seems.

I don't read a lot of historical fiction, but A.S. Peterson's book really pulled me in. I can't wait to read the next one.

A Note to Parents:
Most likely, by the time your kid's in high school, they can choose what they want to read, and choose wisely. This book, while it does have cussing, drinking, murder, treachery, and mention of rape, is far preferable to many of the other choices your teen has. The romance is wise and pure and beautiful. The writing is elegant and lyrical. The only iffy thing about it would be that Fin decides midway that God doesn't care about her, and is described as not being "on good terms with the Lord." All this set aside, though, I'd say this is one of the cleaner choices one can make in a book these days.

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