Friday, September 19, 2008

What Mrs N's Been Reading - My Swordhand is Singing

Just finished Marcus Sedgwick's My Swordhand is Singing. Sometimes a title is just so off-the-wall that it makes you pick the book up for a second look. This was one of those books. The creepy eyeball looking at you on the front cover helped, too. That, and the fact that I've liked other Sedgwick books. Anyway, this book is based on the very early folklore about vampires and the undead. Yes, it has undead vampires, multiple murders, chase scenes, and a gothic horror story setting, but if you're looking for a really creepy, blood and guts, vampire story, this ain't it. What it is, is a very well-written story about a teenage boy learning about life, death, love and the truth about his drunk, seemingly irresponsible father. It's a story of true heroism in the face of extreme adversity. It's a story about coming to terms with who you really are and what you're meant to do. It takes place at an nonspecific time several hundred years ago, in an unnamed eastern European country. It's a quick read, that doesn't fit any specific genre. There's plenty of tension, both from the action and the setting, but nothing graphic. I recommend it for both middle school and high school students. Enjoy!

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