As you might be able to tell from the Featured Authors section, I worship the ground Melina Marchetta walks on. She can do no wrong in my eyes.
So, when a friend was going to Australia for Christmas I asked politely (read: DEMANDED) she bring me back a copy of the Piper’s Son. And then she gave it to me (and I squeed) and then I read it (and I squeed) and now I am reviewing it (and squeeing) because I loved it so very, very much!
Alrighty, so The Piper’s Son is a sequel of sorts to Saving Francesca, Marchetta’s second novel. It focuses on the same group of friends but has a different lead.
Thomas Mackee wakes up in the hospital one morning. He doesn’t remember much of what happened the night before but he knows he’s not ready to face his old friend Francesca who’s sitting beside the bed. And he’s not ready to face his family. And he’s not ready to face Tara Finke, the girl he had a one and half night stand with two years earlier. Before his uncle died and his family fell apart.
But over the next few weeks he does face those things, and comes to understand that his chance at happiness isn’t over, it’s going to be really, really hard.
So, I went into this book with one thing in mind. I NEEDED to see more Francesca and Will, the main character and her love interest from Saving Francesca. I didn’t really care that much about Tom. So, on the flip side to that, I did wonder how Marchetta was going to get the reader to care about Tom. And at first it is difficult. He just doesn’t seem to care about anything. And whenever he is on the brink of caring, he forces himself to shut down.
And he’s mean to Francesca. And interrupts her time with Will. Thus ruining the very things I was reading this book for.
But as you keep reading and you learn just how broken and grieving his family is…like two generations of guilt rear their ugly heads. And so many people have all these regrets that they can’t fully regret because good things came from the bad things.
This book just exemplified why I love Melina Marchetta’s work so much. Each and every character was just so real. So human. Everyone was struggling and fighting just to get by and let themselves enjoy the good things. And I loved how even though the book was terribly sad, and I cried more than once, I also laughed. Real life does that thing where it’s both funny and tragic at the same time. This book does that as well.
The North American release date is March 8th by Candlewick Press. I urge you all to pick up a copy. It’s just so very fantastic!
Although, I do prefer the Australian cover. Even if the picture doesn’t happen in the book. Well, I guess it sort of does. Tom does walk down the streets carrying his shoes at one point but they’re flips flops and he’s carrying them because his father and grandfather made him go for a run with them. But I still like it better!