Review Blog

Jan 07 2019

The Storm Keeper's Island by Catherine Doyle

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Bloomsbury, 2018. ISBN 9781408896884
(Age: 11-14) Highly recommended. Themes: Fantasy; Magic; Fear and Bravery; Memory. Eleven year old Fionn and his older sister, Tara, are returned to the ancestral home of their mother and late father on Arronmore Island off the Irish coast. Their mother's depression means they must learn to survive in the isolated community with their grandfather, the mysterious Island Storm Keeper. From the moment the scared Fionn steps off the ferry it seems that the Island's magic rises up to meet him. Will he be the one to save the Island? Slowly he discovers his Grandfather's secrets as Candlemaker and Storm Keeper, but his bravery is sorely tested when Tara's friendship with another boy on the Island prompts him to find answers to the Island's secrets - perhaps to his peril. And the mysterious candles store memories and provide opportunity to travel back to other times, testing the bravery of the young Fionn, but giving him opportunity to understand the Island's secrets.
With mystery and magic circling in amazing ways and with an undercurrent of trapped sinister magic ready to unleash itself, this book will entrance young readers that love fantasy tales. At times it is a little bit scary, funny, enigmatic, sad and yet hope-charged. It is written in a delightful way, rich with metaphor and with wonderful descriptive passages and endearing character descriptions. The wonderful Grandfather is an absolute delight.
Highly recommended for readers aged 11-14
Note: this appears to be the first book in the series.
Carolyn Hull

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