11.15.2010 | Monday

Tyger Tyger

category: Book Reviews

Tyger Tygertitle: Tyger Tyger
author: Kersten Hamilton
series: Goblin Wars #1
published: 6 September 2011
publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
genre(s): action, fantasy, folklore, romance
pages: 308
source: author
format: paperback
buy/shelve it: Amazon | B&N | BookBub | Goodreads

rating: five-stars | series rating: five-stars

the blurb

Teagan Wylltson's best friend, Abby, dreams that horrifying creatures--goblins, shape-shifters, and beings of unearthly beauty but terrible cruelty--are hunting Teagan. Abby is always coming up with crazy stuff, though, so Teagan isn't worried. Her life isn't in danger. In fact, it's perfect. She's on track for a college scholarship. She has a great job. She's focused on school, work, and her future. No boys, no heartaches, no problems.

Until Finn Mac Cumhaill arrives. Finn's a bit on the unearthly beautiful side himself. He has a killer accent and a knee-weakening smile. And either he's crazy or he's been haunting Abby's dreams, because he's talking about goblins, too . . . and about being The Mac Cumhaill, born to fight all goblin-kind. Finn knows a thing or two about fighting. Which is a very good thing, because this time, Abby's right. The goblins are coming.

my review

The debut young adult novel by Kersten Hamilton, Tyger Tyger is the first of what is to be a series, The Goblin Wars.  Teagen is a girl with a plan for her future, knowing exactly what she wants out of life.  She has a great job and has expectations for a college scholarship.  Her mom is an artist and an illustrator, her dad a librarian with a penchant for Irish poetry.  Her best friend, Abby, is a quirky girl that she has known her whole life.  Her little brother Aiden is a human iPod.  Nothing about her life is dangerous.  Until Finn comes into her life and everything she has known about herself, her family and the world around her turns upside down.

From the first page of this novel, I was hooked.  I was drawn into the story from the very beginning and very literally couldn’t put the book down.  I loved the Celtic mythology that wove throughout the story, and the way it was used to both develop the characters and the story.  There was definately a line drawn between the good and the evil characters, but the characters were far deeper than that.  The evil were definately that, but they were developed in such a way as to be fully intriguing in their own right.  I loved that Tea’s family members, as well as Abby, were not only supporting characters for the main story, but were almost three-dimensional in nature, quirk and eccentric and fully lovable.

Not only was this a thoroughly engrossing story, it had very clear themes of good and evil.  There was a part at the end that essentially said, and I paraphrase, that while blood is blood, sometimes it is the choices you make that count, rather than who or what you came from.  I love that message and this story definately made that point.  And absolute MUST read!

About Kersten Hamilton

I was born in a trailer in High Rolls, New Mexico, in 1958.

By my sixth birthday, I knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wanted to be a writer. I was fascinated by the sound of words, the sweep of story. I wanted to make word magic and tuck it inside the covers of a book.

A writer needs a very tough skin. And she needs something to write about.

Fortunately, my parents were quite eccentric. My childhood can only be described as ‘exciting.’

I tracked caribou and arctic wolves across my family’s homestead in Alaska, caught tiny tree frogs in the swamps and rain forests of the Pacific Northwest, and chased dust devils and rattlesnakes across the high desert of New Mexico.

Against all odds, I survived my many misadventures. I was not electrocuted or drowned. Most of the bullets missed, and the incidents with bears, snakes, wolves, and angry moose were not fatal.
Before I settled down to have children I worked as a ranch hand, a wood cutter, a lumberjack, a census taker, a wrangler for wilderness guides, and an archeological surveyor.

I am the author of several picture books and many middle grade novels. Tyger Tyger, book one of the Goblin Wars series, is my first novel for young adults.

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