Quintana of Charyn

Quintana of Charyn (Lumatere Chronicles, #3)

Quintana of Charyn by Melina Marchetta

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

If you’re one of the lucky ones, you’ll know it when you see it. You’ll understand why the gods have made you suffer. Because that moment’s reward will make your knees weak and everything you’ve suffered in life will pale in comparison.

I will keep this review short. This book surpassed my expectations and my expectations were really high. After reading Finnikin of the Rock and Froi of the Exiles, I knew that this book will be powerful. However, it wasn’t like I imagined. It was far beyond that. Hours after finishing the book, I am still haunted by the beautiful characters Melina Marchetta has created. That ending had  so much impact on me. It was the perfect ending to the perfect story. And that epilogue touched my heart so deep. After reading so many books, I always fear that books may not affect me anymore but this book made me laugh and cry and hope. This book made me thank my past self for reading this series. This book may be fantasy but it made me realize so much. So thank you my past self and thank you Melina Marchetta.

Froi of the Exiles

Froi of the Exiles (Lumatere Chronicles, #2)

Froi of the Exiles by Melina Marchetta

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I heard your song the moment we were born. And years later, it dragged me back from the lake of the half-dead when all I wanted to do was die. Each time someone tried to kill me, it sang its tune and gave me hope.

I have read the first book in this series (Lumatere Chronicles) entitled Finnikin of the rock months ago and I was extremelty impressed with it. The world Melina Marchetta has created was very different (in a good way) and she described it in such a way that makes the setting very realistic and very fantastic at the same time. The characters she created was very rich and deep that they feel like they’re your old friends. Needless to say, the book for me was remarkable. 

After reading Finnikin of the rock, I was not certain if I’d like to read the second book, Froi of the Exiles, because I fear that the book would disappoint me. Based on experience, second books always disappoint me. Furthermore, I have also recently read another work of Melina Marchetta-Saving Francesca-and it was not how I hoped it be.

In the end, I decided to give this book a chance and it’s a really good decision.

Froi of the Exiles is obviously about Froi, a supporting but really significant character from Finnikin of the Rock. He’s different in the book – he has changed a lot, he’s no longer a “thief” and he’s very loyal to Queen Isaboe and her consort. Froi was tasked to impersonate a “last born”, an important individual in Charyn, in order to kill the King of Charyn. “Kill the king and go home,” that was his orders. However, a lot of twists and turns happened: He fell in love with the princess and he isn’t exactly who he thought he is. He is NOT Froi of the EXILES.

The story is told in several point of views and each point of view is interesting. Each character had a lot to say. And with these characters, I found myself away from my bed. I am no longer reading a book. I was in Lumatere and Charyn. I felt the sufferings of all those people. I saw the misery in Quintana’s eyes and the frustrations in Froi’s. That’s just how good Melina Marchetta is.This book will leave you gasping for air or sobbing in the corner of your bed. It is so obvious that this series is very well-planned.

And there’s something really different on how Melina Marchetta writes. She gives us plot twists the way we give presents. Everything is wrapped in mystery with a ribbon on top. And she slowly unveils it and wowww… it will blow you away because everything was really unexpected. She also chooses the perfect timing in revealing this plot twists.

The only bad thing I see in this book is that it ended. And it ended with a cliffhanger!

Here’s what I really want to tell you: Do yourself a favor and read the Lumatere Chronicles.

Saving Francesca

 

Saving Francesca

 

Saving Francesca by Melina Marchetta

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

 

I want to be an adjective again.

But I’m a noun.

A nothing. A nobody. A no one.

 

I have read Melina Marchetta’s On The Jellicoe Road and Finnikin of the Rock and I absolutely loved those two books. In fact, On The Jellicoe Road is one of the best young adult book for me. That is why I expected this book to blow me away like the two books I have mentioned. But then, all throughout Saving Francesca, I keep feeling like there is something missing.

Saving Francesca is obviously about Francesca, a girl whose mother insisted that she go to St. Sebastian’s which is actually a boy’s school that claims it’s coed. This makes her ‘stuck’ with people she’d never hang out with in her previous school. But that’s not really her problem. One day, her mother did not get out of bed. Suddenly, her lively mother does not even want to leave her own room. This book is more than just about a girl trying to survive high school, it’s about a girl trying to find the strength to handle her mother’s acute depression.

The concept for me is very striking. Let’s face it- a lot of people do not understand depression. The book also has a lot of lessons about family and friendship. That is why I can’t seem to understand why I feel like this book could be something more but it has not achieved it’s full potential. Maybe it’s about I’m expecting something similar to the narrative Marchetta used in On The Jellicoe Road and Finnikin of the Rock. In this book, it’s somehow different. Saving Francesca is actually a lot ‘easier’ to read and I gues somehow it reduced the book’s impact to me. The characters are strong, though. Every character is different and interesting but I think that they don’t blend together quite much. I would also like to point out that this book is not romance! Sure, there’s teenage love here but that is not the center of this book.

I also feel like the ending is quite rushed. I know that Marchetta seems to like open-endings but this book was more of cut short.

All in all, I think this book is good. I have read in goodreads reviews on how people loved it. But for me, this book has no impact. All throughout I feel like I’m trying to reach something that is not there. There is a huge possibility that my disappointments are because of my expectations though.

Finnikin of the Rock

 

Finnikin of the Rock (Lumatere Chronicles, #1)

 

Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“Be prepared for the worst, my love, for it lives next doors to the best.”

Finnikin of the Rock is unlike other books I have read. It is different from the books that I have loved before. Because most of the books I have read are driven by events and the characters acting from the event. But this book, in my perspective, is driven by purpose. And then the characters use that purpose as fuel to start the events.

Finnikin of the Rock centers about Finnikin and Evanjalin, lumaterans exiled. What Finnikin wants is to provide another land to his people exiled from their kingdom because of a dark curse. That is until a woman named Evanjalin claimed that the heir to the throne is alive and that they should try to come back to their kingdom. Secrets were revealed and Evanjalin is not who she says she is.

This book is full of mystery. And I love how the mysteries are revealed bit by bits- like opening a present slowly – it doubles the thrill. Moreover, this book is action-packed – something that is expected from a book that is about a journey. Romance is also here and the best part is, it’s not instant love like some of the young adult books. It shows the characters slowly falling in love with each other. Falling in love even if one is irritating. Falling in love in spite of the cruel world around them.

This book might be slow at the beginning and I was grasping and asking for something exciting to happen. But when that something happens, the wait is so worth it. Moreover, the narrative of Melina Marchetta is something I really admire. She just tells stories in such a way that would amaze you.

The book is very much worth reading. I’d highly recommend this book to readers who would want to think, wonder about the answers to the questions and mysteries and have their mind blown when the answers are revealed.

This book is the first book of the Lumateran Chronicles. It is followed by Froi of the Exiles then ended with Quintana of Charyn.