Friday, October 9, 2009

Forest Born by Shannon Hale, as reviewed by Atlas

This was another one from our Fall Into Reading list. It has been a while since we read the other three books in the Bayern series, so it took a little bit to place everyone and their histories. That didn't detract at all from my enjoyment of the story, however, which tells me this book will work fine as a stand-alone. Readers who haven't read the others may feel at times that they have been left out of the loop, but that may help them identify with the main character, Rin.

Rin is the younger (and only) sister of Razo, who we met earlier. She always thought she knew where she belonged, content with her huge, noisy family back in the forest, but one short incident changes all that. Needing a change, she accepts Rin and Dasha's invitation to join them in the city, where she becomes a lady in waiting to our old friend Isi. Her problems only follow her, however (don't they always?)

People seem to either love this book or find it lacking something. I think the difference comes from whether the reader identifies with Rin or not. Everyone LIKES Rin, but not all readers may empathise with her feelings of not belonging anywhere, or of feeling there is something wrong with her but not knowing just what. Since that describes a great majority of teens at one time or another, this one should be just as popular as the other three!

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