Wednesday, September 18, 2013
The Peculiar by Stefan Bachmann (audio)
In the faery slums of Bath, Bartholomew Kettle and his sister Hettie live by these words. Bartholomew and Hettie are changelings—Peculiars—and neither faeries nor humans want anything to do with them.
One day a mysterious lady in a plum-colored dress comes gliding down Old Crow Alley. Bartholomew watches her through his window. Who is she? What does she want? And when Bartholomew witnesses the lady whisking away, in a whirling ring of feathers, the boy who lives across the alley—Bartholomew forgets the rules and gets himself noticed.
First he’s noticed by the lady in plum herself, then by something darkly magical and mysterious, by Jack Box and the Raggedy Man, by the powerful Mr. Lickerish . . . and by Arthur Jelliby, a young man trying to slip through the world unnoticed, too, and who, against all odds, offers Bartholomew friendship and a way to belong.
If I had to describe this book in a few words I'd say fairy, dystopian, steampunkish. In this world, fairies have waged war on humans and lost and are now subjugated to the slums and minority sects of England except for a few who have risen in the ranks. And the changelings have it the worst. Half human, half fairies, the changelings are viewed as abominations by all. So Bartholomew and his little sister Hettie are kept indoors and away from the windows and prying eyes. Until one day when they do get noticed putting them both in danger. And on the other side of town, Arthur Jelliby is a mild-mannered government official who just wants to live his quiet, unassuming life. But when he confidentially overhears a nefarious plot by the Chancellor Mr. Lickerish, he feels compelled to stop him and to save the woman in the plum-colored dress.
I enjoyed this book. It was a delightful book with a different take on fairies and them living in a human world. It was interesting how the humans found ways of keeping the fairies subjugated and how the fairies became stuck in our world. I liked Bartholomew and how all it wanted to have was a friend. It was actually sad the lengths he went through to have a friend of his own, stuck in his house with his sister and mother. But find an unlikely friend, he does. There is a lot of action and danger in this book especially for Bartholomew and his sister.
I feel like this story could have been wrapped up in one book though so I'm curious what the sequel The Whatnot will be about.
Peter Altschuler is the narrator. I enjoyed his reading though I wasn't fond of a few of the voices he choose, still he did a great job. He has a very nice voice and puts a lot of emotion into his performance.
7 hours, 35 mintues