Once again, I'm doing things a bit differently for MMGM this week. I'm still SO buried with Book 2 deadlines that I'm just not reading enough to do a feature of my own every week. BUT, the ever-fabulous Deb Marshall, was awesome enough to agree to cover the week and introduce all of you to a book I've never featured before: WINTERLING, by Sarah Prineas.
Here's how the publisher describes it:
“We live here, my girl, because it is close to the Way, and echoes of its magic are felt in our world. The Way is a path leading to another place, where the people are governed by different rules. Magic runs through them and their land.”
With her boundless curiosity and wild spirit, Fer has always felt that she doesn’t belong. Not when the forest is calling to her, when the rush of wind through branches feels more real than school or the quiet farms near her house. Then she saves an injured creature—he looks like a boy, but he’s really something else. He knows who Fer truly is, and invites her through the Way, a passage to a strange, dangerous land.
Fer feels an instant attachment to this realm, where magic is real and oaths forge bonds stronger than iron. But a powerful huntress named the Mór rules here, and Fer can sense that the land is perilously out of balance. Fer must unlock the secrets about the parents she never knew and claim her true place before the worlds on both sides of the Way descend into endless winter.
Sarah Prineas captivates in this fantasy-adventure about a girl who must find within herself the power to set right a terrible evil.
And just like last time, I'm going to let Deb explain for herself why all of us need to read this one. Take it away Deb!
Fer, short for Jennifer, is one powerful, brave, do or die kind of character and I loved her for it. It’s clear from page one that she is strong willed, too. That turns out to be a very good thing because that is what drives her to run into the night when she just cannot stand the thought of being cooped up in Grand-Jane’s house doing a laundry list of chores.
As she is running through the forest feeling free and right she comes upon a shimmering pool that responds to her touch in a most startling manner. It opens “The Way”, a portal between Fer’s world and another, one of magic and great turmoil because of its new ruler, The Lady. Falling from the portal is a dog and three wolves who attack it. Fer, not one to stand aside when she sees an injustice, grabs a fallen branch and drives the three wolves off. Anyone else doing this might come as a surprise. Not Fer. You expect it of her. With the wolves dealt with she turns to the dog to see to his injuries and much to her surprise there is no dog. A boy lies wounded at her feet. A boy named Rook who is bound to The Lady by a thrice made oath. An oath that will force him to choose between friendship (whether he wants to admit he likes Fer or not) and betrayal.
From there, the mystery, adventure and fantasy flies across the page pulling you into a world overtaken by some serious evil that bleeds into the fantasy and real worlds. And it is up to Fer to them both. Something she can do because of who she is, a child of two worlds. Take that and combine it with Fer’s own natural bravery and strength of will you have a heroine you’ll cheer and love. Not only that, the story is set against a fantasy world that lives and breaths along side a cast of characters that, though drawn from folklore and fairy , are unique and wonderfully individual. Will admit I even liked the crazy wolf guards who serve nasty bad Lady. Fer manages to befriend them and many others because they realize she is something special, a healer and a warrior.
Finally, there some breathtaking (or should I say breath holding) Wild Hunts and moments when you are sure that Fer will succumb to The Lady and her evil. Highly recommending this one for fans of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis and Brandon Mull’s Fablehaven to name just two!
Check out the author’s website and her other books, including the fabulous Magic Thief (which you should also add to your "to read" list if you have not already. http://sarah-prineas.com/
Sounds AMAZING, right??????
THANK YOU, Deb, for introducing us to such an amazing middle grade book. I'll definitely be ordering myself a copy.
And I want one of you to have the chance to discover it too. So I'm giving away a copy of WINTERLING to one lucky winner. To enter, make sure you leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm PST on Saturday, February 25th. I'll draw one random winner and post their name on Sunday, February 26th. International entries welcome.
For more awesome middle-grade recommendations, check out the other MMGM's floating around the blogosphere today:
And if you want to join in the MMGM fun, all you have to do is blog about a middle grade book you love (contests, author interviews and whatnot also count--but are most definitely not required) and email me the title of the book you're featuring and a link to your blog. It's easier if you email me before Monday, that way your link will be included in the post from the moment it goes live. But if you decide to spontaneously join the fun, I do update the post at several points throughout the Monday. Just email me a link and I'll add you when I do!
**Note: Thanks to a boatload of spam--and my missing a bunch of important emails because of it--I'm now using a new email address. So make sure you update your records because I'm slowly phasing the other address out. New email is: SWMessenger (at) hotmail (dot) com. Hopefully now I won't miss some of your MMGMs, like I have been.**