Wednesday, November 2, 2016
The Call by Peadar Ó Guilín - Review
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The people of Ireland have been facing the Call for the last twenty-five years and there's no avoiding it. The Sidhe are finally getting their revenge for having been driven under the mounds thousands of years ago. Those from age 11 to 16 could be Called from their lives into the world of the Sidhe without any warning for 24 hours - well, 3 minutes and four seconds in the human world. For everyone who get Called the survival rate is only about 1 in 10, but that's much higher than it was in the beginning. Even if you are one of the lucky ones to make it back, chances are still very high that you will have all sorts of physical, mental, and emotional scars.
I'm glad I stumbled upon a sampler of The Call at Barnes & Noble and was able to find a final copy via the library. I was very impressed by this unique and twisted vision bringing Irish mythology in to the present. Our main character, Nessa, is very determined to survive and she's quite strong physically and mentally even though she still shows the signs of having contracted polio as a child. Although, she is disabled she never thinks less of herself in a society that constantly does. She knows that she has to keep her mind to her future, and making it through her Call in alive. We also get a good look at many other characters who attend Nessa's Call survival college - their personalities, outlooks, and the horrors of the Sidhe world through their eyes. Personally, I would have preferred to have primarily stayed with Nessa, I still enjoyed jumping into these other perspectives. Sometimes though, these changes in perspective could be very abrupt and at times difficult to keep up with. The author's world-building skills are excellent and well-developed. I loved getting a new look into Irish mythology, which is quite refreshing to see in YA. This makes me wish there were more like it, particularly the dark, gritty, and thoroughly inhuman side of fairies.
Overall, The Call by Peadar Ó Guilín is a twisty page turner that had me glued to the pages. I honestly hope that somehow we will return to this author's world, but in the meantime I'll definitely be looking into his Bone World Trilogy. If you like The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black, The Gentleman with the Thistledown Hair from Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke, and The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater, you may also enjoy The Call.
I read this novel from October 10 - 17, 2016 and my review is also on Goodreads.