Kirkus Reviews QR Code
THE NAMING by Alison Croggon Kirkus Star


The First Book of Pellinor


Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: June 1st, 2005
ISBN: 0-7636-2639-2
Publisher: Candlewick

A lush, vivid epic fantasy about a slave who becomes pivotal to a vast land’s survival. Sixteen-year-old Maerad toils with no hope of freedom or human connection until the day a strange man shows up in the cow byre. Though wounded, he arranges her escape. Cadvan’s a Bard, one of the special people in this land who use learning and inborn magical power in the service of good. Maerad’s one too, though she never knew it and is ignorant of its workings. Old enemies of the Light are reappearing and Cadvan senses that his discovery of Maerad is no fluke. Evil sweeps the land both blatantly and insidiously as Maerad and Cadvan journey through a grand School and across the wilds, seeking help and clarity and battling foes. Croggon’s characters and environmental descriptions glow with a romantic sensibility and resonate beautifully with archetypal connections to Tolkien. Maerad’s path to her destiny will be awaited eagerly. (pronunciation key, map, appendices, poems) (Fantasy. 12+)