“Changeling” by William Ritter
Source: Finished copy from Algonquin
Genre: Middle Grade Fiction, Fantasy,
Magic is fading from the Wild Wood. To renew it, goblins must perform an ancient ritual involving the rarest of their kind—a newborn changeling. But when the fateful night arrives to trade a human baby for a goblin one, something goes terribly wrong. After laying the changeling in a human infant’s crib, the goblin Kull is briefly distracted from his task. By the time he turns back, the changeling has already perfectly mimicked the human child. Too perfectly: Kull cannot tell them apart. Not knowing which to bring back, he leaves both babies behind.
Tinn and Cole are raised as human twins, neither knowing what secrets may be buried deep inside one of them. Then when they are twelve years old, a mysterious message arrives, calling the brothers to be heroes and protectors of magic. The boys must leave behind their sleepy town of Endsborough and risk their lives in the Wild Wood, crossing the perilous Oddmire swamp and journeying through the Deep Dark to reach the goblin horde and discover who they truly are.
- Doesn’t have the zany, quirkiness that I love from the Jackaby series. [There is a quick nod to Jackaby though!] It is silly but in a way that kids/tweens can appreciate.
- I love the variety of creatures in the book.
- Beautiful story of adoption and the power of family. Seriously though, if you know a young one who is struggling to find their place due to adoption/fostering/other family issue, give them this book. Family is family is family and this book shows what parents/grown ups mean when they call a young one family & how they’ll do anything for the young one.
- Serious props to Tinn & Cole’s mom. She gets her own adventure. There’s no sitting around hoping everything works out for the best here. Each set of people (Mom & Boys) are willing to do whatever it takes.
All in all, a delightful adventure featuring goblins and fun creatures. Can’t wait for the sequel! Look for a review of the Unready Queen in the future. Thanks for Algonquin for the ARC of it!