Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Rifts of Rime - Blog Tour

Welcome to my stop on the Rifts of Rime blog tour from Cedar Fort.
Be sure to click on the banner above to be taken to the tour calendar so that you can visit the other blogs involved.

The Rifts of Rime (Quickened Chronicles #1) by Steven L. Peck
Publisher:  Sweetwater Books
Publication Date:  June 12th 2012
ISBN:  1599559676
Genre:  Middle Grade Animal Adventure
Author links:

“There is one thing, which might show some commitment on your part . . .”
“Name it!” The Thane relaxed again on his spear.
“Deliver the Tail, alive, here, alone, one week from tonight.” The Wolf sat back on the grass of the meadow.
“I will send him, but you must kill him yourself. Agreed?”
The Wolf licked her chops, “Agreed.”
In a world overtaken by greed and a ruthless, power-hungry dictator, Pinecone knows he’s no warrior. But when he’s entrusted with the sacred Scroll of Quickening, an ancient record that holds great power, Pinecone must summon the courage to protect the scroll. If he doesn’t, its secrets will be lost forever.
Meanwhile, Pinecone’s friend Leafe is mounting a makeshift rebellion to fend off the Thane whose evil might grows stronger every day. But her efforts may force her into some troubling alliances.
This thrilling story is full of suspense, surprises, and an epic struggle of good versus evil. Steven L. Peck brings to life a richly detailed fantasy world akin to Brian Jacques’s Redwall series. A truly magical adventure any reader is sure to get lost in.
My thoughts:  The Rifts of Rime is a very cute and fun book.  I am not usually one who likes stories with a bunch of talking animals, but this one I truly enjoyed.   In some ways it put me in mind of Watership Down by Richard Adams.  Both dealt with adventuresome animals and included great battles and triumphs, as well as a good moral background.  My mother read Watership Down to me as a child, and it still pulls some strings on my heart.  So, to relate The Rifts of Rime to that book really means something to me.

I fell in love with many of the characters:  Pinecone, Leafe, and even The Tail - Klish - and these by far are not the only ones.  I found it fun to read about the interactions of the many "quickened" animal species - wolves, squirrels, marmots, ants, etc. These chosen animals are those that are intelligent in some way.   All the interactions were tied to their beliefs in the lore of the Wealdend and The Book of Quickening.  

The whole storyline revolves around a power hungry gray squirrel that tries to overthrow the current sacred leaders.  He does so in such a way to make it seem like those he is overthrowing have either died or have done something against the Wealdend - so that it appears that he is a "hero" and the rightful new leader.  However, he underestimates some very strong individuals who stand up and demonstrate their intelligence and faith in the Wealdend.  Although the true followers of the Wealdend are lesser in number than the followers of the betrayer, their united front is very strong and something to be reckoned with.

The message behind this story is quite powerful and very smart.  Steven Peck is very creative, and writes a tale that I feel most middle school students could relate to on some level.  In sharing some of the story with my students, many perked up and were asking questions - I think it would make an awesome read-aloud, not only to middle grade students, but to upper elementary as well.

Again, thanks to Cedar Fort for offering up a wonderful book, and allowing me to take part in another wonderful blog tour.  Be sure to check out their many wonderful titles.

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