The Land of the Silver Apples

A while back, I got the rare opportunity to go to the library without my 3 girls. Since I was not preoccupied with keeping an energetic 4-year-old under control and twin infants from fussing, I had the time to meander through the aisles and look for  “A book based entirely on its cover.” Easier said than done, because for a while, nothing really jumped out to me. Then I spotted this one on the end of a shelf in the YA section.

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a big fan of the color purple, which is probably what caught my eye first. Then it was just the overall prettiness of the background and my curiosity about the symbol just under the author’s name. Of course, since this was the sequel to The Sea of Trolls, I knew I’d have to read that one first.

The Land of the Silver Apples again follows Jack the apprentice bard. Once again, Jack is off to rescue his sister, who this time has been captured by the Lady of the Lake. Jack’s northman friend Thorgil returns to help/bash anything she can, while the new character of Pega adds a certain sweetness to the story that I appreciated. Then there’s the new character of Brutus, who I wanted to beat over the head with his shiny sword…

This time, Nancy Farmer goes into a whole different set of legends, bringing forth hobgoblins, kelpies, yarthkins, and elves. While interesting, The Land of the Silver Apples doesn’t flow as seamlessly as it’s prequel did, but the story is still fun. The direction Nancy Farmer takes with the Pictish symbols (one of which is included on the cover) is interesting and I found her little list of symbols in the back of the book to be quite fascinating.

One thing this series had definitely done is make me more interested in looking into the history and lore of the Saxon time period. As I mentioned in my last review, I have a particular fondness for anything Saxon from my involvement in the SCA, but I obviously did not learn as much history about that time period as I should have. Should I ever get back into the SCA (and I would like to), I’ll have new information to bring to my persona.

Next week, I’ll be reviewing The Iron Daughter by Julie Kagawa for “A book with a love triangle.”

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