October 22, 2010

Review--Pegasus by Robin McKinley


SFT was excited to get the chance to preview Robin McKinley’s upcoming novel, Pegasus (available Nov. 2010). In this novel, Princess Sylvi undergoes a binding ceremony with Ebon, a pegasus, in keeping with the traditions of her kingdom. While these traditions have allowed the pegasus kingdom to flourish as the human kingdom offers protection against numerous enemies, Sylvi and Ebon’s binding allows them much greater communication than has been previously possible and may threaten this balance.

We meet Princess Sylvi at the age of 12, just before her binding ceremony as she is beginning to become more of a public presence in the court. McKinley’s introduction, through Sylvi’s cautious fascination, of the pegasi, whose language and communication is so different from that of humans that the maintenance of the relationship requires the intercession of magicians and the study of which may drive the most dedicated human students mad, is intriguing. These interlocking elements—learning about trust and friendship in the court setting and between species whose friendship may be dangerous—make for an engrossing read.

While the world-building had McKinley’s typical beauty and depth of description, there were a few creatures introduced early on with which I was not familiar (ladons and others) and I thought a brief physical description might have helped me to keep reading (which I desperately wanted to do) rather than run for Google.

The edge of melancholy and determination that fits in so well with the gorgeous cover image made this an enjoyable fairy tale that will linger after the last page is read.

Good reading,
Chrissa

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