Selling stories is a deadly business.
Tanwen En-Yestin has a gift. A gift that enables her to create colorful strands from her fingers that crystallize into small sculptures she can sell. However, Tanwen has her sights set on a prize greater than story peddling. She hopes to one day become the Royal Story Teller for King Gareth himself. That is why Tanwen is determined to perfect her gift of story-telling through her mentor, Riwor.
However, one day something goes wrong. On her final peddling tour, a forbidden and highly treasonous story strand snakes it’s way into one of Tanwen’s stories. In Urian, the cost for treason is high. Death. After being dumped by her wretched mentor, Tanwen makes a beeline for her home of Pembrone with the guards practically prodding her home with their spear tips. Yet, the guards are not the only ones vigorously seeking Tanwen.
The Story Peddler by Lindsay A. Franklin is a highly addictive book filled with fanciful magic, highly endearing characters, and a beautifully built world. A magnificent book for teens to young adults, this book didn’t win the 2019 Carol Award Winner, Debut, or the 2019 Realm Award Book of the Year for nothing.
What a book! The Story Peddler is the first book in a recently completed series called The Weaver Trilogy. It was so good! I couldn’t put it down!! I finished it in one day.
Lindsay A. Franklin is one of the best “story weavers” around. To weave as remarkable of a story as she did, you need to have a trio of skill sets up your sleeves. The first is to be able to create a transferrable, believable, and endearing world. This gives the reader a sense of transportation. An author doesn’t only wish for the reader to read the book with your brain, but with the perception of the brain and the heart. A good world should cause you to nearly be able to experience the smell of the sea, feel Brac’s rough farm hands, and perceive Tanwen’s beautiful story strands. The second skill is the ability to build an engaging story. A reader should always be grasping, tumbling, and straining to figure out the plot. A reader wants something new that is going to captivate them, similar to the captivation of the world. A good author should know how to move the story to its climax well. This brings us to the third skill. The ability to make real, loveable characters. The characters are the ones who drive the story forward and who let you experience the world through their eyes. If you can’t, in the least, manage this last one, then there is a big chance you aren’t gonna be able to write an awesome book. However, Lindsay has all of these skills!!
Her creation of the world is so vivid and mesmerizing! I was completely transferred to Pembrone, Corysth, and Urian. This was possible, in part, to how great of a character Tanwen was. I was able to see the whole world through her eyes. She is so humane. One minute you are inwardly groaning at a stupid mistake she makes, and then the next minute you are tearing up because of her sweet sentiments. Of course, all of the characters were so great! But Tanwen struck me as the most humane character.
The story is aggravatingly addicting. Lindsay writes this book from multiple perspectives: Tanwen’s, Braith the princess, The One in the Dark, and, once or twice, Braith’s servant Cameria. By having it from multiple perspectives not only rounds out the story, but also provides great opportunities for cliff-hangers. Almost every time the perspective shifts, it is left at a small-to-large cliff-hanger. It is even worse in the second book. However, this causes the reader, especially me, clawing for more.
The only thing I dislike in these books is the character’s and place’s names. They are, once you learn how to pronounce them, names that we might use today, but ever so contorted in structure. One character’s name is Aeron, pronounced as Aaron, but is spelled completely different which makes it confusing. Perhaps this isn’t the correct way to pronounce it, but this name was not the only name where I was fumbling for the proper pronunciation. This, I would imagine, would make it difficult to read aloud. However, this could just be my failure to understand the names.
Triggers: Teeny-tiny hints to sexual behavior, brief and mild sexual harassment, and magic. However, none of these triggering themes were explicitly described.
Overall, this is an AWESOME, professionally edited, funny, and clean fantasy that is HIGHLY compelling, and for a good reason. It has an outstanding plot, characters, and general essence! I recommend it to teenagers and older. Lindsay A. Franklin, you are the greatest and truest story-teller in all of Tir and all the neighboring lands.
Thanks for reading my review! You guys have got to check this one out! God bless!