Hollowspine's Reviews > Fire and Hemlock

Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones
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's review
Jul 31, 2009

liked it
bookshelves: ya
Read in July, 2009

** spoiler alert ** When I started reading this book I had no idea it would involve the fair folk, like the other book that I happened to read at the same time, War of the Oaks. Overall, in both War of the Oaks and Fire and Hemlock, as well as in Johnathan Strange and Mr. Norrell (another book involving the Sidhe) it would be very bad to get involved with them. This book was pretty subtle in it's use of them, though. It took me the longest time to figure it out. I thought it was very clever for Mr. Lynn to keep giving Polly books about his plight, since he couldn't tell her straight what was happening (just like the poor victims of the Gentleman with the Thistledown Hair in Clarke's book). I was so absorbed trying to figure out why everything Polly and Tom made up came true in some way.

I was a bit confused about Tom Lynn's age throughout the book. Either he was very much younger than I thought he seemed when Polly met him, or he didn't age throughout the story (which also wouldn't be that surprising if he was under an enchantment). I also would have liked to know a bit more of the background of how Tom got into that situation in the first place and his relation to the Sidhe. Charles gave him to them, but when and how and why? The ending seemed a bit rushed with some loose ends.

Overall, still a wonderful read, though not my favorite Jones story. At least everyone didn't end up married at the end (though Polly probably will in the near future).

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