Review Blog

Jun 03 2019

Once and future by Amy Rose Capetta and Cori McCarthy

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OneWorld Publications; 2019. 349p; p/b. ISBN: 9781786076540.
(Age: Middle secondary+) In a future where the Mercer mega-corporation has galaxies under their thumb refugee Ari is trying to survive when she finds the legendary sword in the stone during an escape to Earth. Merlin awakens to guide this reincarnation of King Arthur, but he, along with the reader, will be surprised by the modern twists on the popular fairy tale.
While the novel uses Arthurian references as a hook, it has more in common with dystopian fiction like Blade Runner than romantic legends. Its themes of freedom, individuality and change are quite relevant in today's unstable political and economic climate while being presented in a way very palatable to young adult audiences. Featuring a diverse cast of races and sexual identities, many marginalised readers can find a hero to identify with.
Due to the diverse cast featured within this book, it would make an excellent addition to any library and quite suitable for middle secondary class and above due to the content present. In fact, it could be used to introduce themes such as refugees, history and sexual diversity.
Vincent Hermann

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