The Naming (Pellinor #1)
Alison Croggon’s epic fantasy, the first in the Books of Pellinor quartet, is a glittering saga steeped in the rich and complex landscape of Annar, a legendary world ripe for discovery.
THE NAMING incorporates all the themes that make the fantasy genre wonderful. Good battles Evil, magic and power both heal and corrupt, seemingly simple characters discover amazing abilities, and nature and the land are characters in and of themselves. Rather than make the story seem formulaic and tired, Croggon adds new dimensions and twists that keep the plot fresh and the world she has created vibrant. The action scenes are well done, and the world of Annar is one I look forward to revisiting as I make my way through the rest of the books in the series—including a prequel that has just been released! I have few complaints about THE NAMING, but if forced to come up with a negative it would be that some of the descriptions run overlong. Feeling that way could just be a result of wanting to rush to get to the action sequences though.
Fantasy is one of my favorite genres, and I’m astounded that this series was first released fifteen years ago, and I haven’t had a chance to read it until now. I really wish it had been available when I was a teen and immersing myself into the worlds of Tolkien, Brooks, and LeGuin because I love that the hero of prophecy and the main character in THE NAMING is a young girl who promises to be a Bard of previously unheard-of power. I’m also thrilled that the book doesn’t bog itself down in an as-yet unnecessary love story. (I have nothing against romance in my epic fantasy novels, and I suspect one will evolve through the course of this series, but I can’t think of a way it wouldn’t have felt forced in THE NAMING.) The world building is well-done, and the premise that the story was drawn from real ancient texts from an almost-forgotten land allows Croggon to offer supporting “documentation” at the end of the book that helps flesh things out in a creative way.
My thanks to the publisher and YA Books Central for a copy of the book in exchange for my unbiased review.
Great world building
I did like the character Hem. He had enough immaturity to him that he seemed realistic, but not so much that he was annoying. I like his more childish personality. But I wasn't a huge fan of Maerad or Cadvan. Maerad was a very whiny protagonist. She's had a hard life, but she took the whining to an extreme. Cadvan seemed like your stereotypical, wiser-than-thou mentor. He was like Gandalf, only younger.
The pace of this book is lagging. It has exciting parts, but most of it is incredibly slow. There are rather unnecessary scenes in the book, like Maerad getting her period. That was not needed to move the plot along.
I also felt the writer tried to hard to give the writing a "formal" feel. I know that fantasy often has more archaic language, but this was rather extreme and the writing was very stiff and formal.
I did like Annar, even if it could be a bit Middle-Earth like. It seemed very well-developed and I could immerse myself there.
Overall, this wasn't a terrible book, but I didn't enjoy it and thought it needed a lot of work.
--Had an interesting storyline.
--World seemed well-developed.
The book that I read was The Naming by Alison Croggon. The book focuses on the amazing and hard life of a girl named Maerad. She starts out a slave captured after her parents were brutally killed , and has been living stuck in Gilmans cot with no chance for escape . Until a man named Cadvan comes , only he can see the powers that other slaves have labeled as evil and witchcraft , and with his help they escape . Slowly she learns her huge part in having to save the corrupt nations from the uprising of the Nameless One who seeks to destroy and take over all of Annar as he once has .I would describe the main character Marerad as tough. . She has faced many hardships in life ,yet still gets up and faces her destiny and takes every day as it comes . I love how dramatic the book is and how there is never a dull moment . You are always left on your toes with every new conflict and fight that occurs . The descriptions make it feel like you are right there with the characters whenever something happens. The authors style, slowly reveals the true secrets across the book of who Maerad truly is. Alison Croggon also at one moment makes a setting and place seem calm , but then a minute later she turns it into a battlefield testing the wit Maerad and Cadvan have against their opponents. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves action and likes a lot of suspense along with great descriptions and drama.
The Naming is one of those books that you look at and wonder about, and then you pick it up and you can't put it down. It is a story of good versus evil, light and dark, but mostly it is a book about what you find within yourself. Maerad has no family, and a horrible life until Cadvan comes along and saves her.
She learns about the lives of Bards, and her destiny as a child of the house of Pellinor. Alison Croggon tells a story about magic, love, and loss in such a way that keeps you wanting more and more. After you finish this book, you should go find The Riddle because you definitely want to continue the series.
This book was the BEST book I've ever read in my whole life. It's beautifully written and explains the other world so well, like it happened. The way Alison Croggon wrote this book was like she found a lost document from many, many years ago. She has a complete series that is the best thing to read for any fantasy lover. It includes life, journeys, near death and all that. It is about a young girl who is a slave until a bard helps her escape. She then goes on to journey to many places and find her lost family home and a very special person. I would recommend this to EVERYONE who loves fantasy.
Maerad, a beautiful sixteen- year- old slave girl is working in the cow byre when she meets Cadvan, a bard of Lirigon. Instantly, he recognizes his own gift for barding in her and rescues her from Gilman's unforgving cot to join in the fight against the Nameless One.
I found this book in a little store in Maine and bought it because it looked mildly interesting. But it was more than that- it was amazing.
This book bears suspicious similarities to Lord of the Rings, but not so much that a Lord of the Rings fan would not enjoy it.