Clarion Books, the ARC for Tyger Tyger winged itself to me in the mail. Author Kersten Hamilton's first YA novel, Tyger Tyger has been on my radar to pick up and read for two reasons: the Debut Authors Challenge over at the Story Siren, and also because it sounded like it had the potential to be a really great new read. Can I just say? I wasn't disappointed.
Kersten dug deep into the annals of Irish/Gaelic folklore, threw in dashes of some of the Catholic Saint's and mixed it all into the most intoxicating YA fantasy I've read since The Mortal Instruments series. I blew through this book in less than 24 hours and could barely put it down to perform the daily functions of life.
Teagan Wylltson has an unusual teenage life. She's the daughter of Children's book illustrator and a librarian, she's an over achiever, and she refuses to be interested in boys since she's aiming for an important scholarship and doesn't want to be distracted. Unfortunately her mothers mysterious past as an Irish Traveler crops up to disturb all her carefully laid plans, in the form of her cousin Finn Mac Cumhaill. He brings a past full of Gaelic myth with him, including Goblins, the Fir Bolg, Aingeal's and Meg Mell. Can Teagan and her family survive their brush with Gaelic legend?
Part one of a possible trilogy, Tyger Tyger introduces a story I can't wait to read more of. Delving into an area of fantasy I can't say I've read much of in my many years of reading, Kersten has managed to write something fresh. No vampires or the quickly overpopulating Faeries here. By imbuing it with Gaelic lore she gave it an added depth and believability that makes all the difference between a good story and an epic one.
Although you'll have to wait until November 15th to get your copy, I can guarantee you'll not be disappointed by the build-up once you get to sink your teeth into this story. And then you can join me in jumping up and down on the spot waiting for part two.
Tyger Tyger, By Kersten Hamilton
Published by Clarion Books, November 2010
For other great reviews please see:
Dirty Sexy Books
The Compulsive Reader