Thursday, January 31, 2013

Will Sparrow's Road

Will Sparrow's Road
by Karen Cushman
In his thirteenth year, Will Sparrow, liar and thief, becomes a runaway. On the road, he encounters a series of con artists—a pickpocket, a tooth puller, a pig trainer, a conjurer—and learns that others are more adept than he at lying and thieving. Then he reluctantly joins a traveling troupe of "oddities," including a dwarf and a cat-faced girl, holding himself apart from the "monsters" and resolving to be on guard against further deceptions. At last Will is forced to understand that appearances are misleading and that he has been his own worst deceiver. (description from
While I enjoyed the setting of this book - the Elizabethan English market circuit - I found myself having a hard time really becoming invested in it.  I'm not sure if it just read too young for me or if it was because I found Will to be too naive to believe...or what. I loved seeing the sort-of birth of freak shows and how the market folk treated one another and what life was like on the road.  I also eventually enjoyed seeing Will figure life out and come to a happy ending, but until then I felt sort of ambivalent about the whole thing.
Full disclosure: Audio book received to review for SLJ

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