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A Tale of Two Trilogies

18 Jan

During Winter Break, I read the third book in two trilogies. I was thrilled by one and disappointed by the other.

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I LOVED Matched.   Nancy Pearl  recommended it.  A lot of my teaching colleagues read it and loved it.  I found Crossed a little less riveting, but I always expect the second book to be a little slow because I know it is setting the stage for a fantastic final book. Reached  was not fantastic. It was slow and dull. I liked the ideas about the importance of the arts, especially in an age when the arts are being cut in schools. But the love triangle and the Pilot thread just didn’t excite me. Chapters are written in the voices of main characters and there were times I wanted to skip some characters’ thoughts.

So, let’s talk about something I really enjoyed.

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I read  A Brief History of Montmaray  was a potential ORCA nominee.  I think I even put it on my list, although it wasn’t one we selected.  Bothe the second and third books,  The FitzOsbornes in Exile and The  FitzOsbornes at War actually got better.  The series begins in 1936 on a small, imaginary, island kingdom in the Atlantic, somewhere off the coast of Spain and brings the heirs of the kingdom through the events leading up to the Second World War. The final book concludes in 1948. All three books are written as the journal of Sophia, Princess of Montmaray and her voice is compelling. She fills her journal with tales of a life in wartime., including blackouts and the Blitz, dancing in nightclubs with soldiers on leave. There is heartbreak, happiness and a sense that Sophia behaves like a real, imperfect human being. I guess that’s why I like her so much. The historical information was accurate and I felt as though I was living through it with Sophia.

These books have earned a lot of praise, but seem to be flying under the radar of a lot of people.

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