Customer Reviews for

Finnikin of the Rock (Lumatere Chronicles Series)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

And they held onto that name etched in...

Although not in her usual genre, Finnickin of the Rock is a hauntingly beautiful and artfully crafted work of fantasy. Marchetta's poetic style will break your heart and then carefully patch it back together ten times better than it was before. In an interview Marchetta...
Although not in her usual genre, Finnickin of the Rock is a hauntingly beautiful and artfully crafted work of fantasy. Marchetta's poetic style will break your heart and then carefully patch it back together ten times better than it was before. In an interview Marchetta stated that she wanted to write about a group of people struggling with a loss of cultural identity; to represent tragic real situations subtly occurring in our own world. We enter the story naiive and with a certain innocence, but the story leaves us with a profound sense of self awareness and compels one to question his/her own identity. There is something so sad about this story and yet through it all we never lose hope. Hope that the world will be better, that the situation will change, that the characters within it will find peace. And that is what makes this epic so damn good!

posted by stellernightair on April 10, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

A Yearning to Read Review

Finnikin of the Rock has been traveling with his mentor, Sir Topher, for nearly ten years. Finnikin's father and mother died, along with most of the Lumeratens during the five days of unspeakable, when the Lumeraten country was taken over by an imposter king. Finnikin a...
Finnikin of the Rock has been traveling with his mentor, Sir Topher, for nearly ten years. Finnikin's father and mother died, along with most of the Lumeratens during the five days of unspeakable, when the Lumeraten country was taken over by an imposter king. Finnikin and Sir Topher believe the heir to the throne, Balthazaar, is dead until Finnikin is visited in his dreams by a goddess, who calls Finnikin to find her. The goddess gives Finnikin the novice Evanjalin, a silent girl with a bald head who claims that the heir of Lumatere is alive - and that she can take them to him. Loyal to his country but annoyed by this strange girl who won't speak to him, Finnikin and Sir Topher set off on a journey to find the heir and bring their country back together.


I don't really know how I feel about this book. For certain aspects, I love it. For others...not so much. It was strange, but when I put it down, I felt that it could have been epic, but part of its epicness was overshadowed. By what? Well, I'll start with the bad, and end with the good.

Bad: For one, there were several sexual implications or references. Some were obvious; some had hidden meanings. They were scattered all throughout the book. On top of that, I felt a bit lost, especially toward the beginning. While the book was written excellently, at times I felt there was too much information, and at others I felt there was too little. I found myself skimming over certain parts with little interest and then would read the scenes that had huge impact on the story, or I found interesting.

On the other hand, we have the good of this story: Melina Marchetta definitely has a talent when it comes to forming her sentences, and her characters. The characters had strong quirks or "handles" that made them singular. But the one thing about this book that struck me most was the culture, the desperateness of a people ruined and lost. The countries and peoples were fell formed and described. I was deeply moved by the plight of the Lumeratens, the scenes of Finnikin carrying a dead baby to its dead mother, of men and women fighting for all that they have lived for - all that their fathers, brothers, mothers, and sisters have died for. It was these things, as well as the powerful love story, that gave the book a mood and a feel to it that most books long for.

So whether or not you want to read it is your choice. While I can't really point you in either direction, I wish I could. And I hope there's a sequel that will be exactly what this one could have been - epic.

posted by yearningtoread on April 28, 2011

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  • Posted May 4, 2012

    Loved this book! The story was great, characters were very well

    Loved this book! The story was great, characters were very well formed and felt "real" to me. Action, Love, Horror, Passion from everyday people! A very good read for anyone of any age!! Cannot wait to read the next one!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2012

    There's an armload of everything you could want in this novel. T

    There's an armload of everything you could want in this novel. There's action and suspense. There's romance and angst. There's family, comedy and fantasy. Although the novel is set in a time of kings and queens, the characters act so much more realistically to the point of making relating to the story possible, with the men's crude humor and Evanjalin's strength and struggles. There's nothing I don't love about this book. Sure, I got the kingdoms mixed up for the whole first half of the book, but you start to catch on.

    In short, Finnikin of the Rock was amazing. Anyone would enjoy it. Truly

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  • Posted February 28, 2012

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    from Missprint DOT wordpress DOT com

    A long time ago, before the five days of the unspeakable, Finnikin of the Rock dreamed he was to sacrifice a pound of flesh to save the royal house of Lumatere. Though only nine, Finnikin knew the dream was not to be ignored.

    Frightened for his kingdom, Finnikin convinced his friends Prince Balthazar and Lucian of the Mont to make a pledge with him. They climbed to the rock of three wonders and sacrificed flesh from their bodies and a hair from the head of a weeping princess Isaboe. Balthazar swore to die defending his royal house of Lumatere. Finnikin swore to be their protector and guide for as long as he lived. Lucian vowed he would be the light whom they traveled toward in times of need.

    That evening they slept easy knowing the land of Lumatere was truly blessed.

    Until the five days of the unspeakable when the king and queen and their children are brutally murdered in the palace. An impostor seizes the throne and a curse binds all who remain inside the kingdom walls while those who escape are left to roam the land as exiles, dying by the thousands in fever camps.

    But there might be hope.

    A young novice named Evanjalin claims the true heir, Balthazar, is alive and that she can lead Finnikin to the prince. But Evanjalin's machinations soon turn a journey to find the lost heir into a quest to break the curse and free Lumatere. It all begins ten years after the five days of the unspeakable, when Finnikin of Lumatere climbs another rock in Finnikin of the Rock (2010*) by Melina Marchetta.

    Finnikin of the Rock is Marchetta's first foray into the wide and wonderful world of fantasy, after writing three other critically acclaimed realistic fiction novels. In her author bio at the back of the book, Marchetta notes that for her the first step to writing this fantasy was knowing our own world well and finding a way to reflect that world--something Marchetta does expertly.

    Marchetta's world of Skuldenore is a place apart that still manages to feel very close to home throughout the story. There is something very natural in reading about this strange land of kings and magic. As always, the writing here is exceptional. The story blends humor, twists, romance, action and intrigue all with ease--sometimes even at the same time.

    Fantasies are often the realm of strong women and brave men but this novel truly provides shining examples of both. Finnikin and Evanjalin are as powerful and brave a set of characters as any readers are likely to meet this year. Every single one of the characters, even the minor ones, that Marchetta conjures are truly original and memorable--even the dead ones.

    English classes often mention Apostrophe as a literary device used to directly address an absent (or sometimes imagined) character, this book conjures the absent characters in their entirety. Finnikin of the Rock is a haunting novel about a cursed land and its pages are filled with ghosts and a palpable sense of what the Lumaterans have truly lost. All the same, Finnikin of the Rock is essentially a story about hope and rebuilding--with a nice dose of romance, action and intrigue thrown in (of course).

    Marchetta won the 2009 Printz Award for her novel Jellicoe Road. It seems likely that this book is another Printz contender. One of the best fantasies I've read recently and one of the best books of any genre that I've read so far this year.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2012

    Youhave got to read thes

    Thes is the best book in amarica

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  • Posted August 11, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Another all-nighter

    SUPERB read! Finn and his friends Prince Balthazar and Lucian make a blood oath as boys to protect their kingdom of Lumatere. Ten years later, Finn is called by the young novice, Evanjalin, to find the prince and reclaim the war-weary kingdom. All is not as it seems, though, and Finn is bewildered at several turns of events. The map is most helpful for referring to locations in the story. There is adventure, romance, plenty of fighting, and an ending which leaves me begging for time to move quicker so that I can read the next volume of the series (Froi of the Exiles) which will not be published in the US until March 2012.

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  • Posted May 24, 2011

    Read

    Do not pass by this book.

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  • Posted March 27, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    awsome

    the most amazing book out there

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  • Posted March 5, 2011

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    Highly Recommended

    I really enjoyed this book. The writing is great, there is in depth world building, the characters are all dynamic and growing. There were a few reveals that I think were supposed to been twists, that I totally saw coming, but that didn't bother me. The series continues, but from different perspectives, so that should interesting. Can't wait.

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  • Posted November 10, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Wow of a book!

    I bought this book because it seemed to have everything I love: medieval settings, epic battles, and magic. And it sure did not dissapoint!

    At the age of nine, Finnikin dreams that he must sacrifice a pound of flesh to save the kingdom of Lumatere. So, rounding up his friends: Prince Balthazar and Lucian, they make an oath.
    Not long after, the royal family is murdered, and an impostor takes the throne. The land is then sealed off by a curse, leaving thousands of Lumaterans outside their kingdom, becoming exiles from their land.
    Nearly ten years later, Finnikin, having been exiled from Lumatere, receives a message, telling him to go to a rock. There, he meets the novice Evanjalin, who says that Prince Balthazar lives, and promises to take Finnikin and his mentor to him.
    Finnikin agrees, and the adventure begins.
    However, on the road to finally save Lumatere, many perils await. Unexpected things happen, and dangerous secrets are revealed.
    Who is this mysterious Evanjalin? Is Prince Balthazar really still alive? What is Finnikin's role in all of this?

    Find out all this and more in Finnikin of the Rock, an amazing new novel by Melina Marchetta.

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  • Posted June 15, 2010

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    Started off confusing but such a great story!

    At the beginning when they would talk about the 5 days of the unspeakable or why they were exhiles I found it very confusing. But as the story went on and I started to understand the book got so good! It is told mostly through Finnikin's POV but also a few of the others. The only person it is not told through is Evanjalin & I wish it were. To know what she goes through & she feels. I really hope that there will be a sequel to this book there is still plenty of story that needs to be told.

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  • Posted April 8, 2010

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    I Also Recommend:

    Best Fantasy read of the Year.

    A review for this novel is difficulty to write without giving away major plot elements. I can say that it is a rich epic, full of many characters that are artfully developed. It is a story of valor, mysticisim, faith, forgiveness and reconciliation. But, mostly it is a tale of love; one man's love for his kingdom, his people, his family and yes, a girl.
    Ms Marchetta's writing is absolutely beautiful. I sincerely hope that this won't be her only venture in the fantasy genre. She manages to convey hope and joy while never shying away from the brutality of a bloody coup or the suffering of the people in the years that follow. Be warned, though this is a young adult novel the subject matter is frank and mature.
    I originally read this two months ago and am reading it again. It is one of those rare novels that is even more beautiful the second time around. This is one for my all time favorites shelf.

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  • Posted April 6, 2010

    Best Book of the Year!!!

    It has been ten long years since the kingdom of Lumatere was cursed and taken over by an imposter King. Many Lumaterans are living in exile across the land of Skulendore. Finnikin is the son of the former Captain of the Guard. He travels between exile camps looking to help his people come together when he finds a novice who claims that she can bring their people home and replace the rightful heir to the throne. Marchetta writes with striking emotion about love of country, family, and friendship. Fans of Graceling will love this book and while it is Marchetta's first fantasy novel, we can only hope it won't be her last. This is definitely the best book I have read so far this year.

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  • Posted February 23, 2010

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    I Also Recommend:

    Freakin' FANTASTIC!!!

    Finnikin of the Rock is by far one of the best books I have read in quite a while. The setting, the story, the characters, the ROMANCE... was just so breathtaking! I for one am not one for fantasy, but my goodness, I was intrigued from the very first page. Finnikin was an amazing lead. He was brave, stubborn, compassionate, intelligent, and an excellent fighter. While his counterpart, Evanjalin, was unpredictable, cunning, fierce, yet gentle and full of love. Each character was so well developed with such strong traits, but not without flaw. Which made them just come to life through the page. Melina Marchetta created a fantastical world any reader would love to immerse themselves in. The ending, by far, has got to be one of THE BEST ENDING'S I have have had the pleasure of reading. I would LOVE for Ms. Marchetta to grace us reader's with the privilege of continuing on with the the story of Finnikin of the Rock! A sequel must be made!!

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  • Posted February 15, 2010

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    I Also Recommend:

    awesome book

    melina marchetta is an amazing writer if you haven't read her other books you have to! amazing book!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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