The Invasion (The Call, Book 2) by Peadar o Guilin
|The Invasion (The Call, Book 2) by Peadar o Guilin|
|Reviewer: Jill Murphy|
|Summary: A satisfying follow-up to The Call - full of horror, high drama, and deeply intimate romance and tragedy. I cried!|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 384||Date: March 2018|
|Publisher: David Fickling|
|External links: Author's website|
Ok. There may be some spoilers for the first book in this duology, The Call, so scroll down if you haven't yet read it.
Scroll. That's it.
A bit more.
And a bit more.
And another bit more.
And, hopefully, that will do it.
Right. Let's begin.
We already know that the Aes Sidhe are back. And in their quest to win back Ireland from humankind, they have placed a magical seal around the entire island. At some point during adolescence, every teenager is transported to the Sidhe realm, that grey, colourless land to which they were banished thousands of years before. If they can evade the vengeful faerie kind for a full day (just three minutes in the human world) then their lives are spared, although they are often sent back with horrific mutilations. Fewer than one in ten children survive.
Netta and Anto both survived. Which was unlikely, given that Nessa is disabled from childhood polio and Anto is a peacenik who hates blood and violence. So you'd think they'd return to be feted as Irish heroes, wouldn't you? Not so. Nessa is branded a traitor and imprisoned, while Anto is sent to the army frontlines because the Sidhe have gone one step further in their campaign to regain Ireland, and invaded. Can anyone, even Nessa, prevent the invasion from succeeding?
Oh, good grief. The Invasion is such a compelling read. It mixes the high horror of blood and guts with the high drama of classical tragedy but it is also an incredibly intimate story. I defy you not to fall in love with Nessa and Anto as they fight the impossible odds stacked against them. I won't lie to you - I cried at the end, having only seen its inevitability as it came upon me. And then I went straight back and read the book for the second time, finding all the many clues scattered across the pages. Be a better reader than me if you can!
There's a lot in here: detailed worldbuilding, gruesome scenes, a high octane pace, deep human emotions - all anchored by an imaginative understanding of the Irish mythos. I'm genuinely sad that this sequence has reached its end. Fabulous stuff, Peader, fabulous stuff. More like it, please!
If the idea of blending myth with horror with dystopia appeals to you, you might also enjoy Bloodtide by Melvin Burgess, which riffs off the Norse Volsung saga.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Invasion (The Call, Book 2) by Peadar o Guilin at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy The Invasion (The Call, Book 2) by Peadar o Guilin at Amazon.com.
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