FINNIKIN of the ROCK
by Melina Marchetta (MAR)
At first this fantasy may seem like a change of pace and genre for Marchetta; but at its heart is the story of a young person searching for his place in the world – a theme which dominates Marchetta’s other novels. Whilst “Finnikin of the Rock” is set in an imaginary world of knights, sword fighting and magic, there are many parallels with our modern world of displaced people searching for their homeland, of ethnic cleansing and of inhumanity towards our fellow man. The role played in society by leaders (political and religious), guides, warriors and kings is cleverly interwoven into the central story of Finnikin learning to trust himself and the love he develops for Evanjalin. Partnership between men & women – the role each can play in society and in marriage is also explored whilst the truth behind the prophecy that begins the novel, is gradually revealed. The central characters are strongly drawn; their dialogue, their actions (often unexpected) and their moral conflicts are believable. The imaginary world is well crafted and credible; it may take the reader some time to fully understand this world but the extra effort required is worth it. Dare I say it, the love story that gradually takes pre-eminence in this tale, is just as intense and perhaps more credibly realised, than that evoked over the four books in the “Twilight” series. The combination of a cohesively created imaginary world, strong principal characters and the central themes of identity and love should appeal to both boys and girls, fantasy and non-fantasy buffs alike.