Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Review: Tyger Tyger by Kersten Hamilton

Tyger Tyger: A Goblin Wars BookFrom the Back Cover:

"Your life is totally in danger!"

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.

Unfortunately I read this book right after finishing Julie Kagawa's The Iron King, and both books have very similar themes and storylines, and I couldn't help but draw comparisons. But whereas Kagawa's book and a few other fairy books making the rounds right now use Shakespeare as the basis for their fairy worlds, Tyger Tyger takes its cues from Irish folklore, and that helps set it apart. I really enjoyed the inclusion of the old Irish legends, from which this modern-day story is drawn.

Teagan's life is turned upside down by the arrival of Finn and the death of her mother. She begins to see things and sense things and Finn is the only person who can help her make sense of it. Things take a much darker turn when her father disappears and Teagan learns he's been kidnapped and is being held in the magical realm of Mag Mell. Turns out Teagan is descended from the magical Fir Bolg who first inhabited Eireann, and fought against Fear Doirich, the Dark Man, for the right to live on the island now known as Ireland. And Finn is the descendant of the great Irish hero, Fionn Mac Cumhail (sometimes known as Finn McCool). Teagan and Finn team up to rescue her father and journey together through the wonders and dangers of Mag Mell.

While I enjoyed Tyger Tyger, I enjoyed The Iron King much more, and if you only have time to read one young adult book about the collision of human and fairy worlds, I'd recommend that one. Though I do value this book for teaching me a little of Irish folklore and it inspired me to learn more, I like romance in my books and the romance in this one was a little too tepid for me and I found the ending to be lacking as well. I also think this one may be geared more towards middle grade readers than teens. But if fairies are your thing, you'll definitely want to check this one out.

Rating:  3 Stars out of 5

*Please note: This review references an advance digital copy received from the publisher, and therefore the final published copy may differ. Though I received this book from the publisher, these are my honest and unbiased thoughts, and I was not compensated in any other way for reviewing this book.

1 comment:

  1. Oh I adore this one. Thanks for your honest review though :)


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