Froi of the ExilesWritten by Melina Marchetta
(Candlewick Press - 2/1/2012)Series: Lumatere Chronicles #2
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Format: Audiobook (18 hours)
Narrator: Grant Cartwright
Source: Library of Magan Bagan
The curse on Lumatere has been lifted, but Froi's journey is just beginning.
The follow-up to Finnikin of the Rock, which made the 2011 YALSA Top Ten Best Fiction for Young Adults
Written by multi award-winning Australian YA author Melina Marchetta
Three years after the curse on Lumatere was lifted, Froi has found his home ... or so he believes.
Fiercely loyal to the Queen and Finnikin, Froi has been trained roughly and lovingly by the Guard sworn to protect the royal family, and has learned to control his quick temper with a warrior's discipline. But when he is sent on a secretive mission to the kingdom of Charyn, nothing could have prepared him for what he finds. Here he encounters a damaged people who are not what they seem, and must unravel both the dark bonds of kinship and the mysteries of a half-mad princess.
In this barren and mysterious place, he will discover there is a song sleeping in his blood ... and though Froi would rather not, the time has come to listen.
After my lackluster experience with Finnikin of the Rock, I wasn’t planning to read the rest of the books in this series, but when my sister let me borrow her audiobooks for the other two, I decided to give them a shot.
The narration was excellent. I have zero complaints about the narrator, and that is rare for me and audiobooks. Very well done, Grant Cartwright!
Two hours in and I’m still bored. And I still don’t understand why everyone adores Froi. “You mean everything to us.” Really? WHY? Remember when he stole from you and tried to rape your gf, etc.?
-My Goodreads status update at 11%
Maybe I’m missing something, but I still just don’t understand why everyone adores Froi so much. He’s exhibited a wide array of despicable behaviors toward everyone in their close little group, so why they want to keep him around is beyond me. In any case, at that point I realized I was in for a long journey with a character I didn’t like.
Froi did grow on me as the book progressed, but I found it somewhat difficult to reconcile the Froi being presented to me in this book with the Froi I met in the previous book. Apparently he went through a lot of character development in the 3-year gap between where Finnikin ended and Froi began. This was disappointing, and made it sometimes hard for me to believe that this was the same person.
The parts about Finnikin & co. back in Lumatere just about bored me to tears. I don’t care about any of those characters, and it really didn’t help that these parts were mostly just full of petty squabbles. Yawn.
Once Quintana was introduced, I actually became interested. Quintana is a fantastic character, so full of depth, that I fell in love with her almost instantly. Yes, she is undoubtedly the most fucked up character in this series, but she is also the most well-developed, and the main character I care about. Let it be known as well that Quintana’s ties to Froi, Lirah, Gargarin, and Arjuro are what really hooked me. THESE people and their relationships were well-developed and well-explored.
In the end, I liked this one more than the first book in the series, but still had some qualms about it. My interest was piqued enough to get me to read the final book, though (especially since it focuses on Quintana).