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The Click of a Pebble: Where Historical Fiction and Fantasy Collide

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‘You must promise never to speak out about your heritage,’ his grandmother said, her old voice fearful and faint, ‘because people fear anything different.’ ‘Fear us!’ Yöst laughed in protest. ‘We are too few to fear.’ ‘It makes no difference. You are carinatae, descendants of Zeus, magical creatures …’


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‘You must promise never to speak out about your heritage,’ his grandmother said, her old voice fearful and faint, ‘because people fear anything different.’ ‘Fear us!’ Yöst laughed in protest. ‘We are too few to fear.’ ‘It makes no difference. You are carinatae, descendants of Zeus, magical creatures …’

27 review for The Click of a Pebble: Where Historical Fiction and Fantasy Collide

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jeanette Ford

    Having read The Year The Swans Came, I was excited to read this first book about the beginning of the mysterious Zande’s life. The story begins when Zande is very small, about five years old. A massive tragedy leaves Zande, a tiny girl called Tetania and an older boy of about thirteen called Yost, entirely alone, their mothers and companions having been brutally murdered. Although this does indeed begin Zande’s story, this book is really Yost’s story. Yost, Zande and Tata become used to their ne Having read The Year The Swans Came, I was excited to read this first book about the beginning of the mysterious Zande’s life. The story begins when Zande is very small, about five years old. A massive tragedy leaves Zande, a tiny girl called Tetania and an older boy of about thirteen called Yost, entirely alone, their mothers and companions having been brutally murdered. Although this does indeed begin Zande’s story, this book is really Yost’s story. Yost, Zande and Tata become used to their new life with a family on a farm and Yost discovers the character building results of working rather than the life of ease he’d lived before, and the comforting love of living with a family with all their diversities of characters. It is a ‘coming of age’ story really, and the discovery of who he is, apart from being a ‘Child of Zeus’, or Caritinae – part man, part swan. We also learn more about the nature of the caritinae, which was somewhat puzzling in the other book at first, especially with regard to what happened to Peter. The skilful ‘pen’ of Barbara Spencer brings all her characters to life so that the reader can’t help ‘knowing’ them and loving each one with all their curiosities and differences in the people they are, brought about by their life experiences before they came together. I was totally involved with Yost as he learned to work and to open up in response to love and caring shown towards him, helping to eventually dispel the nightmares brought to him by the terrible experience of witnessing the massacre of his people. I am looking forward to being able to read the next book.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Kaye Lynne Booth

    Barbara Spencer has done a marvelous job of drawing the reader in and making her care about the characters, masterfully weaving historical detail into this wonderful coming of age fantasy. It touches on issues that ring true for many of us, at the same time portraying a time and culture in detail, with well developed characters readers will relate to. As the first book in her The Children of Zeus trilogy, Spencer does not tie everything up with a nice bow, but instead chooses the perfect point i Barbara Spencer has done a marvelous job of drawing the reader in and making her care about the characters, masterfully weaving historical detail into this wonderful coming of age fantasy. It touches on issues that ring true for many of us, at the same time portraying a time and culture in detail, with well developed characters readers will relate to. As the first book in her The Children of Zeus trilogy, Spencer does not tie everything up with a nice bow, but instead chooses the perfect point in the story to close off this chapter and leave the reader with a need to learn how all the loose ends will be resolved. See my full review at : http://writingtoberead.com/?p=18932

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jess

    I heard this was a prequel to the book When the Swans Came. I did not know of book one or that this was its prequel. I love Greek mythology, but I think this is more for younger readers. I did enjoy it. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for this ebook copy in exchange for an honest review.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Catherine Kullmann

    The Click of a Pebble is Book One of a prequel trilogy to Ms Spencer’s The Year the Swans Came. It opens some eighteen years previously with the slaughter of a strange community who live on an island in the Bay of Biscay. There are only three survivors—the young teenager Yöst, four-year old Zande and two-year old Tatania. They can only guess their ages, as birthdays are not celebrated in the world of the carinatae, swan-men, Children of Zeus. The three children are rescued and, as danger still t The Click of a Pebble is Book One of a prequel trilogy to Ms Spencer’s The Year the Swans Came. It opens some eighteen years previously with the slaughter of a strange community who live on an island in the Bay of Biscay. There are only three survivors—the young teenager Yöst, four-year old Zande and two-year old Tatania. They can only guess their ages, as birthdays are not celebrated in the world of the carinatae, swan-men, Children of Zeus. The three children are rescued and, as danger still threatens, are sent to live with Ramon and Pascual whose remote farm already shelters a diverse group of people with no questions asked. Here Yöst learns to live as a human, to accept his responsibilities towards the two younger children in particular but also towards the community which has taken them in. He and the others keep their secret, but he can neither resist the pull of his native wild nature nor postpone the inevitable transformation once he reaches the right age. This is an intense and intriguing story. We feel for and with Yöst as he is torn between two visions of happiness. Can he choose domesticity or is he fated to leave the farm and those he has come to love? And, if he goes, what will become of his loved ones? Once again, Ms Spencer leaves us wanting more.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Z

    I received a copy of this from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. I really enjoyed the authors first book, When the Swans Came, so when I saw this on Netgalley, I was very excited. I love the prequel idea and how Zande became who he is. I thought it was well done but a bit too drawn out. I loved the characters, the mythology, the conflicts, and the sense of family. I’m looking forward to the next instalment of this series and also another one in the previous series.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Joscelyn Smith

    This was a great coming of age fantasy story. I really enjoyed seeing these young characters struggle to survive in the aftermath of the massacre that leaves them only each other to depend on. Their journey drew me in and had me reading this entire book in one sitting, I'm looking forward to reading more books set in this fascinating world. *I voluntarily reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book provided by NetGalley* This was a great coming of age fantasy story. I really enjoyed seeing these young characters struggle to survive in the aftermath of the massacre that leaves them only each other to depend on. Their journey drew me in and had me reading this entire book in one sitting, I'm looking forward to reading more books set in this fascinating world. *I voluntarily reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book provided by NetGalley*

  7. 5 out of 5

    T.N. Traynor

    Sweet, moving story This is such a sweet, yet sad tale. Prejudices abound in this fable of shape-shifting swans, where otherwise wonderful people suddenly have a blind spot. This book is really well written and packed with tiny details making it a delight to read.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn Quirk

  9. 4 out of 5

    hilary m diner

  10. 5 out of 5

    Barbara Spencer

  11. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly

  13. 5 out of 5

    Laurel

  14. 4 out of 5

    OjoAusana

  15. 4 out of 5

    Brin

  16. 5 out of 5

    Mary Yarde

  17. 4 out of 5

    AyumiMilla

  18. 4 out of 5

    Leslie Smith

  19. 5 out of 5

    Katharine

  20. 4 out of 5

    mary browning

  21. 5 out of 5

    Byron Fortin

  22. 5 out of 5

    Abbigayle Grace

  23. 5 out of 5

    Judith A Johnson

  24. 4 out of 5

    Deanna

  25. 5 out of 5

    Patricia Fletcher

  26. 5 out of 5

    Viktoria

  27. 5 out of 5

    Angeline Gallant

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