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Changelings, by Anne McCaffrey, Elizabeth Ann Scarborough Book Review | SFReader.com
Changelings, by Anne McCaffrey, Elizabeth Ann Scarborough Genre: Fantasy Publisher: Del Rey Published: 2005 Review Posted: 9/21/2006 Reviewer Rating:
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Changelings, by Anne McCaffrey, Elizabeth Ann Scarborough
Book Review by Phillip A. Ellis
Have you read this book?
Changelings follows from the popular and successful Powers that Be trilogy by the authors, and traces the early years and development of Ronan Born for Water Shongili, and Murel Monster Slayer Shongili. They are twins, native to the sentient planet Petaybee, and selkies, capable of transforming, like their father, into seal form.
Their parents try to protect them from off-world interest, by hiding their shapeshifting ability, but when the emergence of new land on Petaybee, and unfortunate events resulting from an encounter with an otter, threaten the idyllic life of Ronan, Murel, and their father, the twins must be sent to a place of relative safety. Except that danger seems to follow them even there.
Changelings is a charming book. It is an easy to read, unchallenging book that should appeal to both McCaffrey and Scarborough fans. As a result, though, it feels more than a tad lightweight. The dangers, whilst appropriate to the young age of the protagonists, does not quite feel ominous or threatening enough. Further, the characters don't feel as rounded as they could be. The most charming is otter, but then that is in part from its speaking voice alone. Nothing really distinguishes the other characters and, although for the most part they charm, they don't really stand out.
There are also a number of minor, if niggling inconsistencies with the earlier books, and, indeed, with itself. Most annoying are the changes in gender of the cats, and it is hard to determine their real gender without recourse to the earlier books. Yet, despite these, the book is a pleasure to read. It is not a work of the highest order, it is little more than a basic read, but it can fill an idle hour or two agreeably enough. If you're a fan of either author, or a collector, get it. Otherwise, maybe, borrow the book from a friend or a library.
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