Sunday, June 14, 2009

Review: Gifts by Ursula K. Le Guin

book 4 for the Once Upon a Time III Challenge
genre: fantasy
rating: 4/5

Not everyone in the Uplands has a gift - a special and specific ability - but those who do are revered and feared, depending on what their gift is. The men in Orrec's family are to be able to, with a wave of their hand and a look from their gifted eyes, to destroy whatever they see. For Orrec, though, this kind of gift seems more like a curse and he chooses to blindfold himself and live as though he were blind instead of unintentionally destroying those that the loves. With the help of a childhood friend named Gry, Orrec sorts through his feelings while trying to decide what life holds for him.

This was an engaging read. I like the idea of "gifts, " it felt very fleshed out and Orrec is a sympathetic character. I appreciated his struggle and there is a nice theme of the power of books and the spoken word. It took me way longer than I wanted it to for me to keep names and places straight, though, which was a bit frustrating. I wish I had gotten to know Gry a bit better, she's an intriguing character, but overall I really did like this. It would probably be great for a young adult book group - there could be a lot to discuss.


bermudaonion said...

I struggle with fantasy sometimes because of the names - I find the unusual names harder to keep track of. Glad you liked this one.

TexasRed said...

I like Ursula Le Guin, but don't read her very often. Seems to take awhile to get into her stories, although I feel like they're good in the end. glad you liked this one.

Shauna said...

What a great blog you have here :)

Trish said...

It sounds like an interesting one, but I just can't get passed The Left Hand of Darkness. That was definitely more sci-fi than fantasy, but it's turned me off of Le Guin a little. :(

I like the idea of a young adult book group--I love when I see my high school aged sister sharing books with her friends.

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