Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The Riverman

Starmer, Aaron. 2014. THE RIVERMAN. New York: Farrar Straus Giroux.

This Thanksgiving vacation my husband, daughter and I moved in to our new home. After all of the work that moving houses entails, I was often too tired at night to do much reading, and during the day there were always tasks that needed to be done. Hopefully this week I can get back into my reading habit!

The last book I finished before the Thanksgiving vacation was The Riverman by Aaron Starmer. This book had been mentioned in several articles I read, and also a young adult lit twitter chat that I participated in. So, following the buzz, I picked this book up and started to read.

The Riverman is about a boy named Alistair and a girl named Fiona. Alistair is sort of a loner, and only hangs around with his friend Charlie. Fiona lives in the same neighborhood, and she and Charlie used to play when they were young, but have since lost touch.

Fiona shows up at Alistair's house one day and asks him if she would write her biography. This seems like a strange request for a 12 year old, but Fiona claims that she is already 13. It seems that she has been visiting a magical world called Aquavania, but that in her magical land, there is a creature called the Riverman that is stealing the souls of children. She wants Alistair to record her story before the Riverman gets her.

The book tries to be suspenseful and dark, but I just thought it was weird. There was a lot of build up about this magical world, but I thought it fell flat. I didn't really care about the characters, either. They weren't endearing or even likeable. The structure of the story, switching back and forth between the real world and Fiona's retelling of her magical world, became cumbersome and confusing.

I didn't enjoy this book, but that doesn't mean that you won't love it. I know there is someone out there who would love this book, but it just wasn't me! 

Keep on readin',
Mrs. Cox

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