Thursday, October 23, 2008

Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale...

During a conversation I had with Holly Black, I remarked how I loved that her characters in the Spiderwick Chronicles and the subsequent spin-off were flawed and imperfect - that they made mistakes and were believable and easy to relate to. (I have a hard time swallowing stories where characters are uncannily perfect and incredibly flawless. Perfect characters seem soulless and apart of some other universe not my own.) She thanked me and asked me if I had read her other books. I unfortunately didn't have the opportunity to do so. She remarked that if I liked flawed characters, I'd love Tithe.

A few days ago, a package came in the mail from Holly and Theo and in it several different copies of her books and examples of the illustrations he has done. What a wonderful surprise! We all were so excited and thankful for such a thoughtful gift!

A day passed and I found myself unable to sleep. Everyone else was asleep and the house was unusually quiet. I paced through the house, finally settling on the box of goodies and retrieved a copy of Tithe.

From the moment I opened the cover, I was enchanted. I couldn't put it down. Even though I could see the morning light spilling through the cracks in the blinds, I couldn't stop reading until it was over. I became entranced with following the thrilling story of Kaye and her perils with the normally unseen faerie folk. What struck me the most was that these characters were indeed flawed. They swore, drank, fought, and made bad decisions - and I loved them for it. I'd like to think that I was a "perfect" teenager who made all the right decisions and never did anything wrong, but the truth of the matter is that I have more in common with the characters of Tithe than I would like to admit. (Let's just say that I had a hard time with the awkward teenage years.)

I definitely recommend Tithe. Holly Black skillfully weaves together the world of Faery with the modern and does so with rich detail and believability. Her vision of a modern faerie tale is dark, decadent, and studded with humor. (And who don't love them some forbidden love!) I can't wait to dive into the other books in this series!


Anonymous said...

hi - have you watched the movie "before sunset"? I love it - maybe you like it too. N

Andrew Thornton said...

Oh, I like it too! I especially like it since it was the follow up movie to "Before Sunrise." The actors have grown and changed just as the characters are supposed to.

I hate to admit it, but I'm a sickenly romantic at heart, or at least I aspire to be one secretly.

I like movies that break your heart a little with how beautiful they are.

Amanda said...

Oh, Tithe is such a great book! (And I'm more than slightly jealous that you actually got to meet Holly Black and that she sent you a copy.)

I'm not entirely certain if you're aware (I figure you probably are), but there is a sequel to Tithe. There could be more than one, for all I know. Valiant is the one that comes after Tithe, and I don't think you'll be disappointed if you check it out.

Andrew Thornton said...

Hola, Amanda!

It was a really good book and I enjoyed reading it quite a bit. Holly and Theo Black are amazing people! They really are both down to Earth and have so many funny stories.

Valiant and Ironside were both sent along as well. I started reading Valiant, but Cynthia hid them in fear that I wouldn't be sleeping enough at night and wouldn't be working hard enough during the day.

In sisterly fashion, after all was said and done, she forgot where she hid them. Alas! Now I have to run out a buy a copy.

Anonymous said...

Have you read the Faerie Wars series by Herbie Brennan? Think you'll love them too.