Stranger and Stranger
By Rachael Arsenault
The Duircean Trilogy
A Five Star Rating
This is a novel that would make C.C. Hunter proud! In case you all didn’t know C.C. Hunter is my all-time favorite YA Author who writes in the school or camp based setting. Please understand for me to give a book a five-star rating it means that it is a book I would read more than once, which next to never happens. I am not a huge fan of Faerie books in general but this one is a breath of fresh air.
Stranger and Stranger blends real-life feel with the believably fantastical. I believed every word of this book, and the writing was gorgeous. If you are a fan of professional grade world building, seamlessly integrated into a plot then this is your book! I’m not kidding it was masterful. The magic system had some of your expected tropes, (elemental manipulation) but there was a whole other side to the magic system that made it one of a kind. Since I am not a huge fan of spoilers I will give none.
The character personalities resonated as real, and I was attached to every single one on a significant level. I loved some and really didn’t like others. The older generation of faeries is a good example of the ones I don’t like. Their points of view really just pissed me off, but then I get the feeling that is how the author was hoping the reader would feel. My favorite character is Shawna which may come as a surprise because she is not the protagonist, but you can’t help but get wrapped up in her specific struggle.
There is a little bit of something for everyone in this book, it runs the spectrum, from mixed political views to the legalized kidnapping of human teens to be changed and become faeries (changelings). The process this author dreamed up for this development from one race to another is remarkable, to say the least. There are also the elements of a meaningful bonding friendship, a friendship corrupted by unavoidable circumstance, and an M/M relationship prospect (which I am dying to see just how that plays out). There is ignorance coming from a painfully obvious source and seething hatred coming from a source I didn’t even know was there but made complete sense once it was revealed.
I could go on and on about the things I loved about this book! The only complaint I have is one of personal preference, and that is that it leaves you hanging at the end. I am buying book two today, (Yes this book was THAT good!) and will be back in about a week to tell you about it! I can’t wait!