Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Gobbling Goblins

I mentioned in my last post a book called Tyger, Tyger by Kersten Hamilton. It's about goblins and Irish folklore and a mythical, magical place called Mag Mell. The main character, Teagan, ends up visiting Mag Mell after her "cousin" Finn Mac Cumhail moves in with her family. Turns out they're not exactly cousins--which is good, considering the sparks Teagan feels around him. But with Finn, the goblins follow. One kills Teagan's mother and another drags her father off to Mag Mell. Teagan, Finn, and Tea's little brother go off on an adventure to find him and bring him home.

While they are there, Teagan learns more about Mag Mell and the goblins, and finds out some interesting stuff about her family heritage. They battle goblins of all sorts and experience one of the most unique story worlds I've read. Their adventures continue in In the Forests of the Night, which I loved just as much as Tyger, Tyger.

There is obviously going to be another book in this series, although it hasn't come out yet. I am anxiously awaiting it, though!

This is not the only goblin series I've read recently. Another that has captured my heart is a series by Hilari Bell.

I found the first book, The Goblin Wood, at a local Scholastic warehouse sale. (If you are a homeschooler, check out THIS and see if there are any in your area. Cheap books! Fun times!) I admit I just picked it up because it was only a couple of dollars and the title sounded interesting.

But I fell in love as soon as I started reading. Mackenna is a hedge witch whose mother is killed. She takes revenge on her entire town after discovering goblins aren't quite what the priests of the town have made them out to be. She becomes an ally to them, and they become her loyal followers.

The story continues in The Goblin Gate, and ends in The Goblin War. Both of these books are equally as good as the first. In some sense, the stories follow similar paths because it is essentially the same conflict--humans against goblins--but each book adds a new facet to the story and the whole thing comes to a very satisfying finale.

I had never really given much thought to goblins before. Never read books that focused on them. These two series--with very different takes on goblins--have opened my eyes to them, though. I highly recommend you get out and gobble some goblin books.


Kessie said...

Oh wow, both series sound really fascinating. Are they Christian fantasy or just general? I don't think I know of any books that have protagonist goblins, except maybe World of Warcraft.

Kat Heckenbach said...

The first one in the post is Christian, and fairly overtly so. But I must say, it is not preachy. At all. The characters are Christians, and it influences them, but no one, anywhere, evangelizes. I was really impressed with how she wove in faith so naturally.

The second series is purely secular.

Jeff Chapman said...

For certain two very different takes on goblins. By the way, what's a "hedge witch"?

Kat Heckenbach said...

I ought to tell you to go read the book and find out, Jeff :P.

In the book it's sort of like a lesser witch. Someone with a little magic, who uses a lot of runes and herbs to heal and such, but isn't terribly powerful.