Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Hardinge, Frances. Cuckoo Song.

Hardinge, Frances.  Cuckoo Song.  Harry Abrams  uncorrected proof   2015  409p  $17.95  ISBN 978-1-4197-1480-1  ms/hs  Fantasy  E-BN

Triss is a sickly eleven-year-old child growing up in post-World War l England and is very much doted on by her parents.  Pen is Triss’s younger sister and is very jealous of all the special attention that Triss receives.  To make matters worse, the girls’ older brother has been killed in the war.

As the story begins, Triss is found coming out of a pond into which she has apparently fallen.
 As the doting parents put her to bed and prepare for a new illness, Pen becomes even more difficult and vengeful.  Consequently, Triss begins having very strange symptoms, including an insatiable appetite, even for non-food items, and incidental memory loss.  She questions her symptoms and seems to become less fragile. She begins following her sinister sister Pen, who is behaving even more erratically.

In this well
-written book, the adventure and suspense never stop.  The plot takes many turns that the reader never sees coming.  The relationship between the girls and the way the changes in their characters are resolved will surprise and thrill the reader.  This is definitely a thriller, and a delightfully unique fantasy novel.  Readers will not want to put this book down.

Summary: Fragile and sickly eleven-year-old Triss is found coming out of a pond, which she had apparently fallen into, and begins to exhibit strange symptoms, while mystery and revenge seem to emanate from her sinister younger sister Pen.          

Mystery-Fiction                                             --Virginia McGarvey

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