Today is my blog tour stop during the blog tour for Faery Swap by Susan kaye Quinn. Faery Swap is a Middle Grade Fantasy book. I’ll be sharing two excerpts with you today, my review of Faery Swap and there is a tour wide giveaway!
Warrior faery princes can be very stubborn. Especially when they possess your body.
Fourteen-year-old Finn just wants to keep his little sister out of Child Protective Services–an epic challenge with their parentally-missing-in-action dad moving them to England, near the famous Stonehenge rocks. Warrior faery Prince Zaneyr just wants to escape his father’s reckless plan to repair the Rift–a catastrophe that ripped the faery realm from Earth 4,000 years ago and set it adrift in an alternate, timeless dimension. When Zaneyr tricks Finn into swapping places, Finn becomes a bodiless soul stuck in the Otherworld, and Zaneyr uses Finn’s body to fight off his father’s seekers on Earth. Between them, they have two souls and only one body… and both worlds to save before the dimensional window between them slams shut.
NOTE TO TEACHERS: Check out the Virtual Author visit video and Common-Core-Aligned Teacher’s Guide for Faery Swap here.
I got a copy in exchange for an honest review
Faery Swap is a fun and enjoyable story. I don’t read a lot of Middle Grade books, but books like this really make me wonder why I don’t read MG more often. It’s so different from YA and NA, it’s less drama and more epic adventures and a fun story. Faery Swap is a great story about a human boy and a faery warrior prince who swap places and have to save the world (sort of) and stop the evil guy from carrying out his plans. It’s a bit cliché at some points, but also has some great original touches to it. Like the way magic worked, the importance of knowledge and magic and the Otherworld.
The focus of Faery Swap is mostly on the story. It’s told in third person perspective with chapters from Zaneyr and Finn his perspective. They swap early in the story and Finn has to figure out how the Otherworld works an how to get home, while Zaneyr has to figure out how to act normal in the human world, which leads to some hilarious situations. There are some precitable scenes, but there where also some plot twists I didn’t see coming. This story was a lot of fun and I read it in one day.
I liked both Finn and Zaneyr, although at first I thought Zaneyr was a bit annoying. He was running away from his problems, without solving them, but luckily he realized that later on. Finn was a nice guy who cares a lot about his family and takes on a lot of responsibility already. He cares for his little sister and makes sure they don’t end up in child protective services, because his father isn’t really there for them. I really felt bad for them, they basically didn’t have a mother and a father. Erin, Finn’s sister, is adorable and she was the cause of some great scenes in the book. I also liked Fix, the Spriggan, he talked about himself in a weird way and for some reason he was just adorable.
The world building is done well, giving enough information without overdoing it. I would’ve liked to learn more about the world, but I think this book has the right amount of world building for the audience. The things we need to know get explained and there are some great ideas of what the Otherworld is like and the different type of faeries and houses. I really liked the world Susan created in this book. The magic in this book is also kinda unique, it uses the elements, but there is also dimensional magic. And the more knowledge and mathematics you know the better your magic.
I also loved the fact how great the cover matches the story, it has Stonehenge, both main characters, the wands and on the back is even the Spriggan Fix and all these things play an important role in the book.
The ending wraps the story up nicely, providing with a good ending, while still leaving open the possibility for a sequel would the author ever want to write one. It wrapped up all the important storylines and it left me feeling happy about how things ended.
To conclude: This is a fun and enjoyable story. The story was a bit predictable at times, but it had enough original elements to keep it interesting and there where some plot twists I didn’t see coming. I liked the characters and the world building was done well, although I would’ve liked to learn even more about the world. All in all this was a fun and enjoyable story!
You can add faery swap to your to-read list on Goodreads
You can view the 2 minute book trailer here:
Author’s Note: Faery Swap is told in alternating points of view, between Finn, the human boy, and Zaneyr, the faery prince who tricks him into swapping places.
He looked up at the blanket of haze hiding the sun. The sky had been blue when he had dropped off Erin. How long had he been out? He wrestled his arm around to look at his watch
The second hand was dead still, frozen between the five and the six. Whatever McFreaky did to knock him out broke his watch, too. The watch his mom gave him. She had strapped it on his wrist that day he was late for the bus and told him that being on time was important. Part of growing up. She drove him to school. The wreck happened on the way home.
It was the last thing she ever gave him. And McFreaky broke it. Finn clenched his fist and slammed it into the grass.
Then the grass punched him back.
The hit to his shoulder was so hard, it flipped him onto his back. A tinkling of glass sounded all around him.
“What the…?” Finn scrambled to sit up. The grass couldn’t have punched him. That didn’t make any sense. Something under the grass then. He jumped up to his feet and stared at the ground, frozen, waiting for it to move again.
Finn stomped his foot on the grass where he’d been lying a moment before, just to be sure. The grass kicked back, knocking him off his feet and landing him with a thump on his backside. The tinkling glass sound rushed up, like a thousand tiny voices laughing.
“Ahhh!” Finn jerked up off the ground. A narrow dirt path was just a dozen feet away, so he ran toward it. Tiny insects rose up wherever he stepped, making the tinkling sound, then falling back down. He teetered on the safety of the path, which seemed clear of the insects. The path was just wide enough for a sheep to pass. A very small sheep.
What was this crazy place?
Zaneyr peered at the young sister of Finn. He vowed to respect that kin bond, as a brother would. It was the least he could do, having banished her brother to the eternal changelessness of the Otherworld. And perhaps the House of Finn would serve as good a hiding place as any.
She awaited his answer with an impatience too large for such a small thing.
“No, lass, you cannot stay home with me.” He gestured to the loud guardian of the stone structure. “You need to stay here. But I will be back at the appointed time for you.”
Erin’s shoulders sagged with defeat.
“But I think I will return home now.” Zaneyr looked around at the many dwellings that crowded the path. “Which one would that be?”
Erin fixed that glare upon him again. “I memorized our address, already! When are you going to stop quizzing me?”
“It is the sickness,” Zaneyr said with a smile. “It is stealing my memory like a thief.”
“Dude, you are sick.” She suddenly shot her hand toward his face. Reflexively, Zaneyr leaned away, but she managed to land a tiny, warm hand on his cheek. He froze. What sort of magick was she working by touch? Then he remembered she was only a child, and a human one at that. It had been so long since he had felt the warmth of any touch.
The tension flew away.
“You’re not running a fever.” Her face was a picture of seriousness. “But I should go home with you.”
“Erin!” the woman called again, closer now. “You all right, love? I’m closing the gates.”
“You are summoned. You must go.” Zaneyr glanced again at the dwellings, stacked like cubes on top of one another. He pointed to one. “Is that our home? I don’t believe you truly recall.”
Erin’s shoulders drooped again. “It’s 842 on Earls Court.” She speared his chest with a small finger.
Don’t forget to come back and get me.”
“I could hardly refuse an order so imperiously given.”
About the author:
Susan Kaye Quinn is the author of the bestselling Mindjack Trilogy, which is young adult science fiction. Faery Swap is her foray into middle grade, which is her first writing love. Her business card says “Author and Rocket Scientist” and she always has more speculative fiction fun in the works. You can subscribe to her newsletter (hint: new subscribers get a free short story!) or stop by her blog to see what she’s up to.