Book Review: The Wingfeather Saga

What the Books Are About:

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On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness by Andrew Peterson (summary from Goodreads)

Once, in a cottage above the cliffs on the Dark Sea of Darkness, there lived three children and their trusty dog Nugget. Janner Igiby, his brother Tink, their crippled sister Leeli are gifted children as all children are, loved well by a noble mother and ex-pirate grandfather. But they will need all their gifts and all that love to survive the evil pursuit of the venomous Fangs of Dang who have crossed the dark sea to rule the land with malice and pursue the Igibys who hold the secret to the lost legend and jewels of good King Wingfeather of the Shining Isle of Anniera.
Andrew Peterson spins a quirky and riveting tale of the Igibys’ extraordinary journey from Glipwood’s Dragon Day Festival and a secret hidden in the Books and Crannies Bookstore, past the terrifying Black Carriage, clutches of the horned hounds and loathsome toothy cows surrounding AnkleJelly Manor, through the Glipwood Forest and mysterious treehouse of Peet the Sock Man (known for a little softshoe and wearing tattered socks on his hands and arms), to the very edge of the Ice Prairies.

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North! Or Be Eaten by Andrew Peterson (summary from Goodreads)

In order to survive, the Igibys [Janner, Tink, and Leeli] must flee to the safety of the Ice Prairies, where the lizardlike Fangs of Dang cannot follow. First, however, they have to escape the monsters of Glipwood Forest, the thieving Stranders of the East Bend, and the dreaded Fork Factory.
But even more dangerous are the jealousies and bitterness that threaten to tear them apart, and Janner and his siblings must learn the hard way that the love of a family is more important than anything else.

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The Monster in the Hollows by Andrew Peterson (summary from Goodreads)

Janner Wingfeather’s father was the High King of Anniera. But his father is gone. The kingdom has fallen. The royal family is on the run, and the Fang armies of Gnag the Nameless are close behind.

Janner and his family hope to find refuge in the last safe place in the world: the Green Hollows–a land of warriors feared even by Fangs of Dang…Join the Wingfeathers on an adventure filled with mystery, betrayal, and sneakery in a land of tasty fruits. There’s a monster on the loose and the truth lurks in the shadows.

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The Warden and the Wolf King by Andrew Peterson (summary from Goodreads)

All winter long, people in the Green Hollows have prepared for a final battle with Gnag the Nameless and the Fangs of Dang. Janner, Kalmar, and Leeli—Throne Warden, Wolf King, and Song Maiden of Anniera—are ready and willing to fight alongside the Hollowsfolk, but when the Fangs make the first move and invade Ban Rona, the children are separated. Janner is alone and lost in the hills; Leeli is fighting the Fangs from the rooftops of the city; and Kalmar, who carries a terrible secret, is on a course for the Deeps of Throg. Meanwhile in Skree, Sara Cobbler and Maraly Weaver care for the broken Artham Wingfeather as Fangs muster for battle across the MightyRiver Blapp.
Sea dragons lurk in the waters. Wicked Stranders crawl through the burrows. Ridgerunners and trolls prowl the land. Cloven haunt the forest. Monsters and Fangs and villains lie between the children and their only hope of victory—in the epic conclusion of The Wingfeather Saga.

What I Liked:

I don’t know if you’ve noticed by now, but I like fantasy (yes, that was sarcasm).  The Wingfeather Saga is not only fantasy: it’s fantasy done well.  It’s got it all: fantastical creatures (such as toothy cows), magic, and a different world.  What’s not to like?

One thing I especially liked about this series is that the reader can really relate to the characters.  Each character has his or her own personal struggles.  Janner, the main character, struggles with jealously and bitterness, and he is a much more relatable character because his struggles and faults are so evident to the reader.  We all have probably struggled with jealousy at some point in time, so the reader can not only relate to how Janner feels but also really empathize and understand how Janner feels in the story.  And although the reader can admit that Janner is being selfish, Andrew Peterson somehow still manages to make Janner likable.

Andrew Peterson also does a wonderful job world-building.  He creates a world that is so original, it’s realistic in the reader’s mind.  He pictures it so clearly that the reader has no doubt about what this mysterious world is like.  The most important thing in creating a realistic world is picturing it your own mind so that you can convey this picture to your readers, and Andrew Peterson does this brilliantly.

Another thing I loved about this series was the creativity and originality of the story.  It was refreshing to read a fantasy series that is so creative and original and like none other I’ve ever read.

If anything I said above about this series sounds appealing to you, you need to read this series.  Even if what I said doesn’t sound appealing, still read it, okay?  When you read this series, you make life-long friends of the characters, friends you will never forget.

What I Didn’t Like:

Honestly, there wasn’t anything I didn’t like about this series.  There isn’t any inappropriate or objectionable material.  If you like fantasy, you need to read this series!

Who I Would Recommend This Series For:

I would recommend this series for almost all ages.  This would be a great family read-aloud.

Underlying Themes and Messages {SPOILER ALERT}:

The two main themes throughout this series are good vs. evil (which every good fantasy series should have) and brotherly love.  In the series, Janner, the main character, is the Throne Warden, whose job it is to protect his brother Kalmar, the king.  Janner has to make many sacrifices along the way to keep his brother safe, including the ultimate sacrifice at the end of the series.  At first, Janner is bitter about his responsibilities, but as the series progresses, he willingly protects and even *MAJOR SPOILER* sacrifices himself for his brother. *END OF MAJOR SPOILER*  This message is so powerfully portrayed throughout the series, as well as good triumphing over evil.

Rating (Goodreads):

On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness (The Wingfeather Saga #1): 4.22 out of 5 stars

North! Or Be Eaten (The Wingfeather Saga #2): 4.47 out of 5 stars

The Monster in the Hollows (The Wingfeather Saga #3): 4.63 out of 5 stars

The Warden and the Wolf King (The Wingfeather Saga #4): 4.69 out of 5 stars

My Rating:

I would give this series a 5 out of 5 star rating.

Quotable Quotes:

And guess what?  I’m adding a section: the quotable quotes section!

“Blood was shed that you three might breathe the good air of life, and if that means you have to miss out on a Zibzy game, then so be it. Part of being a man is putting others’ needs before your own.”  ~ Andrew Peterson, On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness

“Here I sit in the presence of queens and heroes and magic. Yes, magic. It is only when we have grown too old that we fail to see that the Maker’s world is swollen with magic – it hides in plain sight in music and water and even bumblebees.”  ~ Andrew Peterson, North! Or Be Eaten

“When children say it’s time to leave, they mean, “It’s time to leave.” When grownups say so, they really mean, “It’s time to begin thinking about leaving sometime in the near future.”  ~ Andrew Peterson, North! Or Be Eaten

“‘But I don’t want to be the Throne Warden,’ Janner said with all the bitterness he could muster.
‘I understand,’ Nia said. Janner had planned to send her over the edge with that comment, but she didn’t seem surprised.
‘Sometimes I don’t want to be queen. But what I want doesn’t change what I am.'”  ~ Andrew Peterson, The Monster in the Hollows

“Love runs stronger than blood. Deeper than any name you could give me.” ~ Andrew Peterson, The Warden and the Wolf King

“When you run out of hope, everything is backwards. Your heart wants the opposite of what it needs.” ~ Andrew Peterson, The Warden and the Wolf King

 

Have you ever read the Wingfeather Saga?  Did you like it?

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On a completely unrelated note, sorry I haven’t posted in a long time.  I’ve been really busy lately…I’m sure you all can relate. 🙂

 

 

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Quote Challenge: Day 3

Now, ladies and gentlemen, for the final day of the quote challenge.  Let’s have a quick rules recap…

  • Thank the person who nominated you (I am indebted to you forever, Zoe Wingfeather 😛  and her blog is here)
  • Nominate 3 new bloggers everyday
  • Post a new quote everyday for 3 consecutive days

Here is the quote  are the quotes I have chosen for today:

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I love this one!  Words of truth from Audrey Hepburn. 🙂

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Amen!  Love your enemies.

I tag the following wonderful bloggers:

And, since I couldn’t think of another blogger, I tag…you!  Yes, you.  If you want to do this tag, go for it!  And have fun.  You must have fun.

 

Poetry Definitions and Experimentation, Part 3

Yes, I know I promised to get the last part of this series to you a long time ago.  Sorry for the delay.  Anyway, without any further ado, the third part of this series.  Of course, first are the definitions:

  • Alliteration–repeated sounds at the beginning of words (that Slick old Soggy Sick Sand).
  • Consonance–repeated consonant sounds anywhere in the words (Sally Sank to the bottomS).
  • Assonance–repeated vowel sounds anywhere in the words (SAlly sAnk sAdly).

And now onto the interesting stuff!  The POETRY… *trumpets play* Dun, dun, DUUUUNNN… (I’ll be normal now).

sonnets

A sonnet is a fourteen line poem written in iambic pentameter (see the earlier parts of this series), traditionally written about love.  There are two types of sonnets (well, there are actually three, but I’m just talking about the most common ones): English (or Shakespearean) and Italian (or Petrarchan).  The difference is in their rhyme schemes.  English sonnets have the rhyme scheme ABAB CDCD EFEF GG.  It consists of 3 quatrains (four line stanzas) and 1 couplet (a two line stanza).  The Italian sonnet has a rhyme scheme of ABBAABBA CDECDE and consists of 1 octave (an eight line stanza) and 1 sestet (a six line stanza).  Both English and Italian sonnets contain a volta or “turn” within the last (or the last few) stanzas.  A problem is related in the first stanza(s), and the problem is resolved in the volta.  For more information on sonnets, go to this website.

Here’s an example of a sonnet written by Shakespeare (so this is a Shakespearean sonnet 😉 ):

From fairest creatures we desire increase,
That thereby beauty’s rose might never die,
But as the riper should by time decease,
His tender heir might bear his memory:
But thou, contracted to thine own bright eyes,
Feed’st thy light’s flame with self-substantial fuel,
Making a famine where abundance lies,
Thyself thy foe, to thy sweet self too cruel.
Thou that art now the world’s fresh ornament
And only herald to the gaudy spring,
Within thine own bud buriest thy content
And, tender churl, makest waste in niggarding.
Pity the world, or else this glutton be,
To eat the world’s due, by the grave and thee.

~Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1 (taken from Shakespeare Online)

This is a Petrarchan sonnet written by John Milton.

When I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodg’d with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest he returning chide,
“Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?”
I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies: “God doth not need
Either man’s work or his own gifts: who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
Is kingly; thousands at his bidding speed
And post o’er land and ocean without rest:
They also serve who only stand and wait.”

~John Milton “On His Blindness”

 

If you’re a poetry geek like me, and you want to know more about sonnets and such, then visit this page.  There’s a lot of great information on there.

So that’s it for this poetry “series!”  As always, please comment.  Thanks!

 

Poetry Definitions and Experimentation, Part 2

I’m becoming more and more obsessed with writing poetry.  I’ve recently been experimenting with rhyme scheme.  Oh my word, it’s so much fun!  I’ve also been trying some meter on for size.  It’s also a lot of fun.  So, without any further ado (because I know there’s already been a few weeks of ado–meaning, I didn’t get this next part out in a timely manner), some more poetry definitions.

  • Dactyl–a type of foot that consists of 3 syllables: the first is stressed syllable, the second is unstressed, and the third is also unstressed.  Example: HALF a league/ HALF a league/ HALF a league ONward (from Alfred Lord Tennyson’s “The Charge of the Light Brigade”).
  • Anapest–a type of poetic foot that consists of 3 syllables: the first two are unstressed, and the third is stressed.  Example: In the MIDST of the WORD he was TRYing to SAY / In the MIDST of his LAUGHter and GLEE / He had SOFTly and SUDDenly VANished aWAY / For the SNARK was a BOOjum, you SEE (from Lewis Carroll, “The Hunting of the Snark”).

{The examples for anapests and dactyls were taken from Your Dictionary.}

And now, for the poetry type of the day… *drumroll*

Limericks:

A limerick is a five-line poem with the rhyme scheme AABBA.  They usually are funny and nonsensical poems, and they’re a lot of fun to write.  I wrote…kind of a lot of these, so hang in there. 🙂

There once was a girl named Joy,
Who hated ev’ry little boy,
So all little boys,
Made lots of noise,
And tried Joy to annoy.

And another…

My name is Johnny Bill,
My best friend’s name is Jill,
I changed my mind,
Don’t like her kind,
Now Jill I’m gonna kill.

Here’s another one:

There one was a fellow, Tom,

Who made quite a large bomb,

He didn’t know,

That it would blow,

Then Tom was spanked by Mom.

And yet another…

In a dank, dark cave

There lived a boy named Dave, 

When he had to eat,

He caught bats and beat

Their heads on the wall of the cave.

Hope you’re laughing by now…(and not thinking I’m an absolute idiot XD ).

All right, that’s all for today.  Please check back soon for the next part of this series (which will hopefully contain a sonnet)!