Thursday, March 29, 2007
The Book without Words
Avi. The Book without Words: A Medieval Fable. Even if I were ten, I don't believe this book would hold my attention for long. Which is a shame, because it has a lovely cover. :)
The book opens in 1046 in a small town in northern England. Thorston is an old man who has been practicing alchemy, but the false gold he creates is for purposes other than mere wealth. This is a story of greed, the greed for the "gold" and Thorston's greed for eternal life. His servant girl Sybil is thirteen and necessary to his plan. In a little twist on the mythic Sybil, this poor orphan yearns desperately to live, not just to exist in her hand-to-mouth situation.
Other characters include Odo, the talking raven; the monk Wilfred; Bashcroft, the local reeve; Alfric and Damian, two young boys. All of the characters seemed quite flat to me, and the story seemed to plod along. Despite so many elements that could have been charming, it was-- for me-- an empty experience that seemed too pedantic.
Fiction. Fable/fantasy. 2005. 200 pages.