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Moonlight Reader

Lawyer, mother, avid reader. Game host extraordinaire! Partner in crime to Obsidian Black Plague! My bookish weaknesses include classics, fantasy, YA, and agreeing to read more books than is even remotely possible.

Currently reading

Strangers on a Train
Patricia Highsmith
Progress: 60 %
Serpents in Eden (British Library Crime Classics)
Martin Edwards
Progress: 20/276 pages
With Child
Laurie R. King
Progress: 1 %
A World Undone: The Story of the Great War, 1914 to 1918
G.J. Meyer
Progress: 52 %

The Caller by Juliet Marillier

The Caller  - Juliet Marillier

This is the third book in a now completed trilogy. Two things:


First: I don't think that this really needed to be a trilogy, although I do think that the story needed more than one book. It probably could have been done as a duology. No one seems to write those, though, and I don't know why.


Second: Nonetheless, as you can see, I gave this a very high rating. This series hits a lot of my personal buttons, and I found the ending deeply satisfying.


A disappointment:



There was one thing that really did disappoint me though. For the first two books, we are led to believe that the King, Keldec, was evil. By this final book, though, where Marillier seems to end up is that Keldec was merely weak, but his wife, Valda was evil, and a bit of a sadist as well, taking pleasure in the pain inflicted on others.


Marillier's world isn't wholly patriarchal. In fact, kingship passes matrilinially, as she (almost parenthetically) tells us. But it bugged me that she chose to make the person in control - who was male - weak, and the person manipulating him - who was evil - his wife. It felt cheap to me.

(show spoiler)



I love the way that Marillier writes her romantic subplots. She is not a romance novelist, but her fantasies do generally have romantic themes. She is not one for insta-love, and her protagonists have to work at it to find happiness. I thought that the romance between Neryn and Flint was lovely.


I really did enjoy the world-building as well. Alban is an agrarian society, loosely Celtic in nature, with a more Scottish feel than the world of Sevenwaters. I loved the Good Folk, in their myriad of forms and guises. Some were recognizable to me: selkies and brollachan.  Many were unnamed, but still familiar. While Marillier is no GRRM, characters to whom I was attached died in the rebellion.


I liked the ending. It was sad, yet still hopeful, happy, but serious. Very satisfying.