Monday, March 26, 2012

Fantasy Fiction

Librarians are all about putting the right book in the right person’s hands.
Sometimes this goal makes it hard for us to decide where to shelve a book in the library.
Should The Hunger Games be shelved in Teen or Science Fiction?
Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card is one of my favorite Teen books of all time. It is officially shelved in the Science Fiction section but you can also find it in Teen paperback collections all around Sno-Isle.  I recently read two books that were found in the Fantasy section even though the main characters were distinctly youths.

In The Left Hand of God, Thomas is a 16 year old who has been raised in a massive monastery, under deprived and strict conditions, to be a religious warrior. Not alone, he is a part of a vast army of children being raised to fight in the name of faith.
However, throughout Thomas' "education" he has repeatedly been selected for especially rigorous and brutal treatment. It is not until he escapes that Thomas finds out the destiny he was being groomed for.

Prince of Thorns is a book that will really surprise you…and not necessarily in a good way. Jorg, the main character, is not a likeable kid. In fact, he is a cold blooded killer, a sociopath born from witnessing the horrible murder of his mother and brother.
The book is fast paced, gritty, violent, and disturbing as it follows Jorg and his gang of killers around a bleak sword and sorcery landscape. It takes a quick turn when Jorg reveals to his followers that he is a prince and that the time has come to reclaim his birthright.
The supernatural or magical elements of this book have a unique and distinct flavor to them. It was something I couldn’t quite figure out until about half way through the book when there is a significant and surprising reveal about their world. I really enjoyed both of these books but Prince of Thorns was ultimately the better book.

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