Friday, November 07, 2008

Kate Thompson's Switchers

This is why I am reading all the fiction books in my library. Never having read Kate Thompson's trilogy (Switchers, 1998; Midnight's Choice, 1999; and Wild Blood, 2000), I was recommending it to students who liked vampire fiction. No idea even why. Thus, it was a surprise when Switchers opened with a girl changing into a squirrel and frolicking with the other squirrels, gathering nuts. She then meets Kevin, a boy who can shape-change, and the two of them travel to arctic climes to defeat the krools-- large, amorphous creatures who are threatening to turn the whole world to ice.

In Midnight's Choice, there is a boy who has shape-changed into a vampire, and lots of talking rats. It was a long day, so between the rat dialect and the blood drinking, I didn't pay very close attention, although I did like the battle between the phoenix and the vampire. Students will like this one, and can probably read it without having read the first one.

Wild Blood had about as much rat dialogue, but I liked it a little better. Tess goes to visit her cousins in a remote part of Ireland, and when they go missing, Kevin tries to help her find them. There were some shades of Thompson's latest series, The New Policeman, in that Tír na n'Óg and fairies play a large part in this one. In all, this was not quite what I was expecting, but I know just the students to hand these books to this morning! The sad news is that if you don't have these in your library, they seem to be out of print.

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