Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Fiddler's Green

Yesterday I finished reading a book that moved me to tears by the time I turned the last page. That rarely happens to me, so when it does, I feel the need to tell the world.

Fiddler's Green, by A. S. Peterson, is the sequel to his first magnificent novel, The Fiddler's Gun. It is the continuing saga of a young woman named Phinea Button who abandons her small-town existence in colonial Georgia for the travels and tumults of the open sea. She sheds the clothing of an orphan and dons the sailor's garb out of necessity, not out of desire. Leaving behind her life and her loves to pursue freedom, not just for herself, but for her friends and her country, Fin (her nickname) is plunged into a variety of escapades and battles that eventually bring her full circle.

If The Fiddler's Gun introduced us to Fin and her compatriots and laid the groundwork for this enchanting tale, then Fiddler's Green immerses us in the story in spades. Peterson wields words and weaves images as skillfully as Michaelangelo painted the Sistine Chapel. His beautiful ability to develop characters who inspire love or hate as they deal with matters of life and death left this reader yearning for a continuation. I was not ready to bid farewell to all those I had come to cherish and who had captured my heart.

Well done, Mr. Peterson. You are a gifted writer and a soulful tale-teller, and I am pleased to have made your acquaintance.

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