Riverkeep

Martin Stewart. Viking, $17.99 (416p) ISBN 978-1-101-99829-8
Debut novelist Stewart creates a fantastical world packed with magic and monsters, set on the fictional shores of the Danék River. Wulliam, 15, is to become the new Riverkeep, a job that generations of men in his family have done without complaint. Though an obedient child, Wull plans on running away before he can take up the oars of the family bäta and follow in his father’s footsteps of keeping the river free of corpses. After Pappa is attacked by a bohdan, which inhabits the bodies of its victims, Wull attempts to save his father by going after the mormorach, an enormous, magical aquatic creature that might hold a cure. Stewart assembles a slew of imaginative and memorable characters, including Mix, a stowaway girl with strange markings on her barklike skin; Tillinghast, a “not technic’ly alive” homunculus made from human parts; and Remedie, a witch who hopes to bring her wooden child back to life. Filled with wild adventure and hilarious dialogue (Tillinghast has a particularly saucy mouth), this vivid, engrossing fantasy will delight readers, even those who occasionally find the dialect tricky to navigate. Ages 12–up. Agent: Molly Ker Hawn, Bent Agency. (July)
Reviewed on: 05/09/2016
Release date: 07/26/2016
Compact Disc - 978-0-451-48600-4
Paperback - 416 pages - 978-1-101-99831-1
Prebound-Glued - 416 pages - 978-0-606-40100-5
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