Sunday, 11 January 2015

Sunday Quote - The Still by David Feintuch

"Look upon me, and rue your treason!"

The Still is one of my all-time favourite books. David Feintuch is a great writer (I'm also rather partial to his sci-fi series, the Seafort Saga), and his books are of the kind I pick up again and again. In fact, I've read The Still so many times I had to go out and buy another copy because my original one was falling apart.

The book itself is the coming-of-age story of Prince Rodrigo of Caledon, a rather unlikable, arrogant fellow who nonetheless grew on me - he's flawed, there's no question about that, a spoiled brat, definitely, but he's not without redeeming qualities. When events thrust upon him the need to grow up and become a man rather faster than he ever wanted to, he needs to learn to step up and take his place. It's a rather painful, sometimes cringe-worthy process, and I'm still not entirely sure if one can consider Rodrigo a good man at the end of it, but that's part of what I like about the story. He's not perfect, and probably never will be - but things happen, and he changes in spite of himself.

This book is not lyrical, it's not pretty, it's not perfect, nor does it have the dark, almost cruel edge of many modern fantasy novels. It's classic in style and easy to read, and I will no doubt pick it up again one day. Another plus: it's not part of a long series of books, though there is a sequel (The King ).

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