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The Peculiar by Stefan Bachmann

The Peculiar (edition 2012)

by Stefan Bachmann

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213None54,419 (3.86)10
Title:The Peculiar
Authors:Stefan Bachmann
Info:Greenwillow Books (2012), Hardcover, 384 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Peculiar by Stefan Bachmann

2012 (4) 2013 (4) adventure (6) audiobook (6) changeling (7) children's (3) ebook (3) England (10) faerie (5) fairies (14) fairy (3) fantasy (45) fiction (14) grade 6 (3) Great Britain (2) juvenile (3) juvenile fiction (2) kidlit (2) Kindle (5) magic (13) MG (5) mystery (8) science fiction (3) steampunk (22) to-read (19) unread (2) wishlist (2) x (3) YA (9) young adult (8)



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Several years ago, the city of Bath and all its residents were completely destroyed when a gigantic door between Faerie and our world opened up in the center of the city, releasing thousands of faeries of all sorts and then closing tightly up again. Since then, fairies have been incorporated into everyday English life, and even into the government. Humans are still wary of faerie magic, but they have learned to suppress magic through the use of tolling bells, iron, and general steampunkness. The only beings who are truly ostracized are Changelings, or Peculiars - half-human, half-faerie children who live mostly in the partially-rebuilt slums of Bath. No one notices or cares when Changelings start disappearing from the slums except a little boy named Bartholomew Kettle, a changeling himself. When Bartholomew's sister Hettie is kidnapped, he has to find out what is happening to the rest of the Changelings, too. Thankfully a reluctant, lazy MP named Mr. Jelliby is begrudgingly on the case as well.

This!! This is what a faerie/steampunk story should be like! The world-building is complex, but makes total sense. There is a prologue that explains the destruction of Bath in a simple but emotional way before the plot commences. The characters are nuanced and unique but have distinct motivations so the reader is never left wondering why they are acting a particular way. Bartholomew is ostracized and abused but loves his sister. Mr. Jelliby is good-hearted but lazy and non-confrontational. The faerie chancellor Mr. Lickerish wants to open another door to Faerie, and he doesn't care what or who gets in his way. I wasn't expecting greatness from this free audiobook, but I am very pleasantly surprised. Watch out for the cliffhanger, though. ( )
  norabelle414 | Apr 2, 2014 |
Changelings, or half-bloods, are called peculiars in England after the fairy war. Despised by both humans and fairies, they live in hiding. Now someone is kidnapping and killing half-blood children. A member of parliament and a changeling child try to solve the mystery and stop the killings. ( )
  pmlyayakkers | Oct 19, 2013 |
Listening to eaudio version from HarperAudio narrated by Peter Altschuler.
  JenJ. | Aug 20, 2013 |
Stefan Bachmann does a wonderful job of pulling the reader into an intriguing environment of his own wildly descriptive making. I easily became a wide-eyed, eager visitor in an original and fascinating land. The blend of vibrancy and curiosity of his vision made the journey very rewarding. I came to genuinely care for the main characters, and I sincerely wanted to travel with them on their adventure. However, I met some dismay with an ending that mainly implied this was an introduction in a series. Given the joy invested in the singular book, I was truly left wishing for a resolution that, if needed, could lead into further adventures, but also independently felt rich and complete. ( )
  mypumpkinmail | May 4, 2013 |
From School Library Journal
Gr 5-8-This gripping debut novel opens with a prologue that describes how the fairies left their own land, came to England, fought a war with the humans, and lost, leading to a mechanical Age of Smoke where church bells, iron, and mechanics are used to prevent magic. In this alternative world, Bartholomew Kettle and his sister, Hettie, are changelings, also called Peculiars, children of a human mother and a faery father who has abandoned the family. They live in the faery slums of Bath and follow their mother's rule, "Don't get yourself noticed and you won't get yourself hanged." When Bartholomew watches a beautiful lady from his window, she notices him, and his adventures begin. The lady is involved in a plot whose victims are changeling children, and when Hettie is kidnapped, Bartholomew joins forces with Arthur Jelliby, a member of Parliament who is investigating the plot and sees the boy as a person, not just a Peculiar. Arthur and Bartholomew begin to understand the scale of the plan and the danger that faces all of England, and they travel across the country to gather clues and save Hettie. Bachmann began writing this novel when he was only 16, and he's still a teenager, making the atmospheric writing and tense plotting even more of an accomplishment. The Peculiar combines fantasy, mystery, and suspense with a wry humor and unusual characters to create an intriguing, thought-provoking whole that will leave readers looking forward to sequels. Fans of Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book (HarperCollins, 2008) and young steampunk enthusiasts will find much here to enjoy. ( )
  EBurggraf | Mar 9, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Stefan Bachmannprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Altschuler, PeterNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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After humans win the faery wars in England, a half-human, half-faery child, scorned by both races, finds himself at the center of a web of intrigue and danger when he is stalked by a sinister faery.

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