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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 (162 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.

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  • Editorial Reviews

    From School Library Journal

    Gr 8 Up-Before the "five days of the unspeakable," Finnikin's homeland of Lumatere was a peaceful and plentiful kingdom. Then the royal family was murdered and a puppet regime rose to power. The people were divided: some escaped into exile in the other kingdoms of Skuldenore, while the rest were trapped inside a curse shrouding the kingdom walls. A decade later, Finnikin and his guardian roam the land recording stories and trying to improve conditions for the exiles. A beguiling novice named Evanjalin, who shares the dreams of the people trapped inside Lumatere, joins their small party. She claims that Balthazar, the true heir to the throne, is alive. Rejuvenated by hope, the group embarks on a series of adventures in their quest to reunite the exiles and rebuild Lumatere under Balthazar's rule. With this novel (Candlewick, 2010), Melina Marchetta has crafted a world that is both fanciful and frighteningly real, with parallels to today's civil wars and refugee camps. It is a dense tale that builds to a stirring climax after Evanjalin's real identity is revealed. Jeffrey Cummings convincingly varies his voice to portray a range of ages, accents, and emotions in this impressive reading. Listeners may struggle to keep up with the book's many characters and to grasp the geography of Finnikin's travels (the print edition includes helpful maps). It takes patience to get acclimated to this mystical fantasy, but those who stick with it are in for a rare treat.-Amy V. Pickett, Ridley High School, Folsom, PA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

    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 (March 30, 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: #79,660 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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    Customer Reviews

    4.4 out of 5 stars
    4.4 out of 5 stars
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    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Best Ending Ever February 11, 2010
    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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    31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Fantasy... August 8, 2009
    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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    22 of 28 people found the following review helpful
    2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing in Details and Awkward Elaboration October 2, 2011
    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 Slow to start, great finish!
    Slow to start, great finish!

    A great fantasy story with some tightly written prose that drags you into a cleverly constructed world of warring and broken kingdoms. Read more
    Published 1 day ago by Akaussie
    5.0 out of 5 stars beone
    very good read...a page turner from beginning to is a rag to riches story set in a far away kingdom...
    Published 9 days ago by beone2
    5.0 out of 5 stars This was a well written, complex story that was ...
    This was a well written, complex story that was full of plot twists in all of the right places. Rich, layered characters. Strong voice. Believable world building. Read more
    Published 15 days ago by S. Jewell
    5.0 out of 5 stars Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta
    Oh my god.

    OH. MY. GOD.

    I have so many feels in me that I cannot even construct enough proper and coherent sentences for my review... but for you, I will try. Read more
    Published 1 month ago by Louisse @ The Soul Sisters
    4.0 out of 5 stars Check out this series!
    I wish more people would read this series, so there would be fanart and fic and lots of fun discussion. Read more
    Published 1 month ago by eamar1
    4.0 out of 5 stars I wasn't sure I was going to like this book
    After reading Jellicoe Road last year and gushing all about Melina's writing, I was eagerly anticipating starting the rest of her books. Read more
    Published 2 months ago by Alexa @ Alexa Loves Books
    4.0 out of 5 stars Gift for someone
    Gift for someone. Great book as part of a series.
    Published 2 months ago by tcroc
    4.0 out of 5 stars Finnikin of the Rock spoke to me
    I had no idea what I was getting myself into with Finnikin of the Rock; I wasn't expecting it to be so dark and full of despair. I found myself utterly fascinated. Read more
    Published 3 months ago by Sana // artsy musings of a bibliophile
    5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing! I wish I could find more books with ...
    Amazing! I wish I could find more books with the depth of Melina Marchetta's books. I'll definitely read this again.
    Published 3 months ago by MDL
    4.0 out of 5 stars Great story line
    I found this a great read. It has everything - fascinating plot, interesting characters, and enough twists and turns to keep you really going. Wonderful.
    Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
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