Jaclyn's Reviews > The Brides of Rollrock Island

The Brides of Rollrock Island by Margo Lanagan
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's review
Aug 13, 2012

it was ok
bookshelves: did-not-finish, new-adult

The Brides of Rollrock Island is book in several parts that examine the Selkie myth. It relates the story of Rollrock island over generations through various viewpoints of characters. Each of these characters are connected by Misskaella Prout an island outcast with the power to turn the seals that venture near the island to turn into beautiful women. Misskaella is sought out by the men of the island for her talent so that she can provide them with beautiful, complacent wives. Misskaella is using her gift to get revenge on the islanders who mistreated her as a child.

The "chapters" from different characters fitted beautifully together and the book was very well written. However, I think one has to be in the mood for a melancholic narrative because this book was impossibly sad. Misskaella's revenge was understandable; however, because we see other islander's points of view is was distressing to see how her revenge hurt innocent people. Misskaella's gift broke up marriages and families and brought creatures into a world they don't belong.

Ultimately, this book wasn't personally to my taste, and I'm not sure how to classify this in terms of audience on genre, but I can appreciate it for its beautiful writing and the way that the author was able to convey such a long history of Rollrock in a few short narratives.

*Thanks to NetGalley for a review copy.

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