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Finnikin of the Rock (The Lumatere Chronicles Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Melina Marchetta
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (151 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Finnikin was only a child during the five days of the unspeakable, when the royal family of Lumatere were brutally murdered, and an imposter seized the throne. Now a curse binds all who remain inside Lumatere’s walls, and those who escaped roam the surrounding lands as exiles, persecuted and despairing, dying by the thousands in fever camps. In a narrative crackling with the tension of an imminent storm, Finnikin, now on the cusp on manhood, is compelled to join forces with an arrogant and enigmatic young novice named Evanjalin, who claims that her dark dreams will lead the exiles to a surviving royal child and a way to pierce the cursed barrier and regain the land of Lumatere. But Evanjalin’s unpredictable behavior suggests that she is not what she seems—and the startling truth will test Finnikin’s faith not only in her, but in all he knows to be true about himself and his destiny.


Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Grade 8 Up—Finnikin, son of the head of the King's Guard, has been in exile for a decade, after the violent takeover of his birthplace, Lumatere, by a usurper, followed by a curse by a priestess that has effectively shut the kingdom off from the outside world. He meets a mysterious young woman, Evanjalin, who claims that Finnikin's friend Balthazar, heir to the throne, is alive, and sets in motion a complex and stirring series of events that lead Finnikin to confront his destiny. Evanjalin uses her ability to "walk the sleep" of others, or share in their dreams, as well as her own boldness and sense of purpose, to push events to a climax so that Lumatere can be freed. This novel begins at a slow burn: there are many details to absorb, and the well-drawn maps are a necessity. Then, suddenly, the action turns white-hot and the intricate plot plays out at a pace that keeps readers mesmerized. This is fantasy grounded in a kind of realism seldom seen in the genre. A large cast of unforgettable characters inhabits it, from Finnikin and Evanjalin with their absorbing and intensely emotional relationship, to Froi, a young thief, to the small girl who is Evanjalin's companion as she "walks the sleep." Readers will be rewarded by a shining story of romance, adventure in all of its gritty realism, and high ideals. Those who enjoyed Kristin Cashore's Graceling (Harcourt, 2008) will love this one.—Sue Giffard, Ethical Culture Fieldston School, New York City
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* In her latest title, Marchetta, author of the 2009 Michael L. Printz Award winner, Jellicoe Road, steps deftly into the fantasy genre. Ten years before the story’s start, assassins crept into the kingdom of Lumatere and murdered the royal family, with the possible exception of Balthazar, heir to the throne. As rumors circulated that Balthazar survived, a mystic cast a curse that created a magical barrier around the kingdom and prevented thousands who had fled from returning. Marchetta focuses her tale on 19-year-old Finnikin, the son of a former royal guard, who is serving in exile as an apprentice to Sir Topher, a former advisor to the murdered king. While aiding refugees, they meet a young novice who can enter others’ dreams and claims that Balthazar has chosen Finnikin to “take his people home.” As Finnikin gathers forces to return to the kingdom, intrigue and double-dealing ensue. The skillful world building includes just enough detail to create a vivid sense of place, and Marchetta maintains suspense with unexpected story arcs. It is the achingly real characters, though, and the relationships that emerge through the captivating dialogue that drive the story. Filled with questions about the impact of exile and the human need to belong, this standout fantasy quickly reveals that its real magic lies in its accomplished writing. Grades 6-10. --Lynn Rutan

Product Details

  • File Size: 1079 KB
  • Print Length: 417 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 076365292X
  • Publisher: Candlewick; Reprint edition (April 6, 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003EINO58
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #82,593 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Ending Ever February 11, 2010
Format:Hardcover
You know when you see something truly breathtaking and your in awe over how beautiful it is, well I think that is the right thing to say about Finnikin of the Rock. It is everything that makes a story perfect, but the book talks about a dystopian world. Melina Marchetta creates a story that has hauntingly real imagery, with words that flow nicely like a calm lake. She gives enough description to easily understand the situation and the word, and won't have readers falling asleep. The maps in the book are easy to follow, and I found myself looking at it quite a few times. The world is well built and it's easy to picture, it is also unique in the fact that you can see the cultural difference between each land as the characters travel through it. The emotion is strong and well put and will have readers at lost for words. The readers can really feel sad, angry and horrified as they read about the exile and fever camps, and hear of the five days of the unspeakable. But you will also feel hope that maybe, by the end of the book the people will regain hold of Lumatere. The characters are developed nicely, in a way that will have you make a soft spot for each one of them in your heart. Evanjalin and Froi were probably my favorite two characters. Evanjalin was such a strong, passionate and hopeful women/girl in the story. Anybody would envy that, and I certainly was proud to read about a strong women lead. Froi was someone who you hate at first, but then after hearing his POV you really feel for him. He's just a mischievous s little boy who envies people around him and wants to belong. Something that anyone can relate to. A lot of the situations were truthful, and how they were dealt with was faithful to how I can imagine them being laid out. Example of this is Trevanion's & Lady Beatriss relationship. Read more ›
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Fantasy... August 8, 2009
Format:Paperback
It has been ten years, since the dark days when the royal family was murdered. A curse was put on the kingdom of Lumatere, separating it from the outside world and trapping others inside. Finnikin of the Rock and his guardian, Sir Topher have been traveling in the surrounding lands, since then. They have been making the Book of Lumatere by visiting refuge camps. Finnikin is summoned to meet Evanjalin, a young women with an incredible claim: the heir to the throne of Lumatere, Prince Balthazar is alive. Evajalin also has an amazing power, she can walk the dreams of those in Lumatere.
Evanjalin is determined to return home and she is the only one who can lead them to the heir. As they journey together, Finnikin is affected by her arrogance . . . and her hope. He begins to believe he will see his childhood friend, Prince Balthazar, again. And that their cursed people will be able to enter Lumatere and be reunited with those trapped inside. He even believes he will find his imprisoned father.
But Evanjalin is definitely not what see seems. And the truth will test not only Finnikin's faith in her . . . but in himself.
The characters were amazing. Finnikin was smart and an interesting person to read about. Evanjalin was also very interesting. I liked the relationship that builds between them and how they weren't best friends forever in five pages. That their relationship took most of the book to fully work out. The plot has it's slow spots, but overall is a compelling and entertaining. I kept on looking at the map at the beginning of the book and trying to figure out, where in the blazes they were at times. The world of Skuldendore was original. The writing was phenomenal. I seriously wasn't sure if Marchetta would be able to write fantasy, but she was and it was amazing. I recommend this book to those that love fantasy and those that don't. You will not be disappointed.
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21 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing in Details and Awkward Elaboration October 2, 2011
Format:Hardcover
I had to read this book for a school assignment. I picked it because I enjoy fantasy and because I saw many good reviews here. But when I read it it turned out to be a big disappointment. My first problem with this book is the sex. It's the classic case of too much, too little. It is too much to be considered kid-friendly but the way it is described is extremely awkward and seems unrealistic. The world building is another big issue. You are made aware of the basic politics of the kingdoms, who likes who essentially, but not much more. Melina Marcheta never even tells us the names of the rulers, or why they dislike each other. Add on to that the "Viking" invasions briefly mentioned by Finnikin, which are never mentioned again. Another time Finnikin talks about "the sixth-century fighting techniques of the Lucanites" without reference to what century Finnikin is in or who the Lucanites are. The climax of the book is also extremely disappointing. I won't spoil anything, but it was a big letdown for me. There are also occasionally revelations at the end of chapters that are never acted on, such as when Trevanion says that Evanjalin has his mother's name. On the back cover of the book it says that Melina Marcheta says that a major influence in her writing of Finnikin was the plight of refugees and the loss of homeland. However when I read the book I found the scenes with the exiles to be the worst. They don't seem at all reminiscent of their former life, or seem to have that loss of identity, When Finnikin went into an exile camp that experienced plague I expected to be horrified with the details, but it was just a minor (very minor) shock. The characters' emotional development, or lack of it, is lacking. Read more ›
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Underwhelming, cookie-cutter fantasy with nothing original...
This is the first of Melina Marchetta's books I've read, although I have seen 'Looking for Alibrandi' and I quite enjoyed it.

Finnikin of the Rock was not special. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Lynxie
4.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed this book and the other two books in this ...
I enjoyed this book and the other two books in this series. These three books are the only ones I have read by this author, but based on this series, I would highly recommend her.
Published 1 month ago by Judi Pennington
5.0 out of 5 stars a great book full of characters that are so real
Wow, a great book full of characters that are so real, and a world that is so relevant. Finnikin is a great hero, sometimes he makes me furious, but other times I love him. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
I really liked this book
Published 1 month ago by Pernilla
4.0 out of 5 stars FINNIKIN OF THE ROCK IS SOLID READING... AND ENJOYABLE!
I liked this book, but I think I would have enjoyed it more if I had read other Lumatere Series books first. Read more
Published 3 months ago by SUSAN OLEWINE
5.0 out of 5 stars nice read!
It is an enjoyable , nice read ! I
Published 4 months ago by Susan A. Dudman
5.0 out of 5 stars Finnikin of the Rock is good fun. A great adventure.
Melina Marchetta is famous in Australia because her book Looking for Alibrandi was made into a very well received movie. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Peter Dickerson
5.0 out of 5 stars Melina Marchetta is sourly underrated: This was fantastic!
I first got this book from the library. I read about 60-70 pages and then gave up because the high-fantasy world just didn't sit with me. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Maleeha Siddiqui
4.0 out of 5 stars engaging
The characters were interesting, the pace of the story timed just right. This is fantasy done right, full of imagination and entertainment.
Published 5 months ago by Laurie Melstrom
4.0 out of 5 stars Great beginning
I was reluctant to start a YA series however there is a lot of promise in this series. I have read book two and can honestly say it's so worth it! Read more
Published 5 months ago by C. Quiring
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