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Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Twins on Thursday: The Flute Player by Shawn Mihalik

"The Twins on Thursday" is reserved for the Twins' joint reviews. It is a special feature of our blog that discusses books that we either both like, dislike, or have mixed feelings about. This is also the day where we post reviews for books (and ARCs/Galleys) that have been sent to us by authors/galley sites/publishing houses. And because we don't believe much in uniformity, we'll be trying to mix things up a bit by adding random stuff in relation to our review (well, mostly for books we purchased anyway).

Title: The Flute Player
Author: Shawn Mihalik
Format Acquired: eBook
Publication Date: March 12 2013
Publishing House: Asymmetrical Press 
ISBN: 9781938793134
Source of Copy: Sent for review 


For nearly ten years, young Oliver has begrudgingly accepted his position as the fute player of the peaceful village of Drommar - a responsibility thrust upon him after the previous flute player, and Oliver's best friend, drowned in a tragic childhood acciddent.

Now on the cusp of adulthood, a mysterious young woman enters Oliver's life, and he begins to question the nature of his world and the importance of his place in it.

(Image and information courtesy of Goodreads; Summary lifted from actual book)


Oliver lost his best friend in a tragic accident from his childhood, who happens to be coincidentally the village flute player. Now Oliver has taken his place and while he can play the flute he doesn't feel inspired enough to compose. Trapped inside his own house with a strict father, he is kept from the people, only coming out twice a day to play the flute. He is forbidden from interacting with anyone else and is thus unable to find his Muse leaving him incapable of composing. Then a strange girl pops out of nowhere, someone only he can see, and he finds himself with a number of questions he can't seem to find the answers to.

We weren't exactly sure what to expect from a story as ambiguous as this but at the least we were expecting engaging characters. Oliver is a decent guy and all but he's just a bit lackluster, a little too plain and boring for our tastes, then Alexandria came along and everything just got a bit more confusing.

The thing with The Flute Player is that it has good writing and an interesting storyline, but... We didn't quite get it. There were characters that were obviously out of place, (and of course, we had to think of their significance since they were included in a book that spanned only 150 pages on an eReader) but try as we might, they were still huge question marks for us. Was the story taking place in an alternate universe? Does a possible death open up a new entryway to a different dimension? What were the significance of the ghosts in Oliver's world, and why does it (He? Does a soul still technically have a gender?) pop up when Alexandria is in trouble? In actuality, The Flute Player reads like something that our English professors might push on us for class. There is something there, of that which we have no doubt, but the substance does not really plague us to get to the bottom of things.

Maybe we weren't the perfect fit for a book like The Flute Player, but we must say that we've never read anything quite like it before. This novel may appeal to readers who are looking for a more serious approach to young adult fiction. 


1 comment:

  1. Oh, I do need a serious YA! Will add this to my TBR!