August 11, 2008

The Last of the High Kings

By Kate Thompson
Rating: 4 1/4 stars

Fans of The New Policeman will rejoice to read this companion novel. Jenny, the daughter of the famous musical Liddy family, is different. She can't concentrate in school and prefers to wander the hills and spends time talking to a puka--a magical creature who disguises himself as a white goat. The puka wants her to spend time befriending a ghost--a young man who has been attached to guarding a local beacon for hundreds of years. Meanwhile, Jenny's father, J.J. and his wife Aisling are at odds. J.J. had once visited Tir na n'Og and has become world famous as a violinist as a result, but that has left Aisling with the chore of raising 4 children practically by herself. If only Aengus Og of the fairy folk had kept his bargain about the chiming wood....can J.J. force him to finally give him what is due? And Donal, their son, is drawn to an elderly neighbor man named Mikey who claims to be the last of the high kings and Mikey says he needs to make it up to the beacon. What does the puka really want? What bargain did J.J. make with Aengus? And why does an old man need to climb to the top of the beacon? These three plot threads will wind together to a satisfying conclusion. Full of Irish folklore and music, readers will be happily drawn into the story.

No comments: