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Sunday, November 24, 2013

Novella November: Pig, Crane, Fox by Beth Bernobich

I'm not really sure if this story qualifies as a novella since it's length is closer to short story but I'm going to make it count as a November novella anyways. Beth Bernobich has been on my watch list ever since I fell in love with the first book of her fantasy series called PASSION PLAY so I though this would be a great time to read this short story of hers that introduces her YA novel called FOX AND PHOENIX. I've yet to read the novel and while I wasn't really impressed by this story, I think the story building that was necessary to write it has a lot of potential. I feel this story only grazed the surface of the characters and the setting and I hope to learn more about them in the full length novel.

I really enjoyed learning about the characters since they all have a sort of animal familiar that follows them around. Whether it be a pig, a fox or a crane, each member of society has their own humanized animal friend. While I've seen this done before (like in The Golden Compass), the way it was done here was quite original. Each bond between animal and human is unique and ultimately sacred. Kai, the main character, and his animal pig might seem like an unlikely heroic pair but for some reason, it really works for them. They work together, along with Kai's friends, to find a way to win the princess' hand and untold riches offered by the King. All they have to do is perform three impossible task. Sounds relatively easy right?

I'm not exactly sure which culture this fantasy world is based on but the mix of historical Asian culture and modern technology makes a great combo. I wouldn't necessarily call it steampunk but it's something very similar to it. Personally I find the whole concept refreshing and while the story was short and sweet, not amounting to much, I will definitely read the next book in the series in the near future. This short story was an intriguing introduction and a teaser that will make you buy the novel length story associated to it. You don't see many female authors writing in the fantasy genre and while we are seeing more and more of them, I think Beth Bernobich has the talent to break through and write some amazing things.

Tynga is a 32 years old mom of two, from Montreal, working as a lab technician in an hospital specialized in heart disease. In her free time, she enjoys reading all things Paranormal and photography.

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