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Silverwing (The Silverwing Trilogy) Paperback – September 18, 2007
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“An absorbing adventure story…gripping.” ― Publishers Weekly
“Do not miss this rip-roaring adventure by a very talented young writer.” ― VOYA
“Replete with appealing characters, scary adversaries, bat lore, natural history, unanswered questions, and conflicting theologies, the story takes on a promising sweep….” ― Kirkus
“The perfect adventure for a noble hero….” ― School Library Journal
“Readers with a penchant for losing themselves in fantasy worlds will revel in Kenneth Oppel’s Silverwing . . . A richly imagined work.” ― The Globe and Mail
About the Author
- ASIN : 1416949984
- Publisher : Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (September 18, 2007)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 224 pages
- ISBN-10 : 9781416949985
- ISBN-13 : 978-1416949985
- Reading age : 8 - 12 years
- Lexile measure : 660L
- Grade level : 3 - 7
- Item Weight : 5.4 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.13 x 0.6 x 7.63 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #203,180 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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First of all, this book was extremely well written. The main characters are all very interesting and they all have their own stories to tell. As the protagonist Shade struggles to work his way back to his tribe he comes across many unique characters. Some try to help him like his friend Marina who was cast out from her tribe. Others like Goth, the prince of the royal vampire bat family, just wish use him. As the reader you get to go back and forth between seeing both the stories of Shade and Goth. Its in this sense that I'm very much reminded of the way Red Wall switches between the hero and villain.
Also, the author is very clever with the way he portrays the mythology of the bats. He uses to explain why bats only go out at night and sets up this idea that they have been promised that one day they will be able to go back into the sunlight. Many of the bats believe that the metal bands they have been given by the humans have something to do with this promise. They all have different interpretations of what exactly the bands mean but after Shade finds out his missing father had one he becomes quite jealous and really wishes he would be banded too. As story unfolds Shade, band or no band, becomes quite the brave hero.
To conclude, this was a really enjoyable book. I think anyone who is looking for a fast paced adventure that has something exciting around every corner will have fun reading Silverwing.
There are many rich themes to this book, including community, loyalty, coming of age, war, and diversity, but my personal favorite was its take on religion. The bats hold a certain reverence for the humans in this world, believing that those they "band" have been chosen for a special purpose--a blessing to some, a curse to others. It's a brilliant way to deconstruct religion, as the reader knows first hand that there is nothing supernaturL about humans. Seeing the many interpretations the bats have about the bands provides a potent allegory for the way humans, too, use spirituality in an attempt to explain that which lies beyond their understanding.
There is magic in Silverwing, but it is subtle. A blind bat elder tells a fortune by "listening" to the future, and a few other bats are able to create illusions through their mastery of their "echo sense." The real-life scientific inspiration behind these powers delights the reader with their verisimillitude, and it is beautifully easy to get lost in the sounds and smells of this fantasy adventure.
It's another book where the protagonist learns who he is, and Oppel does a fresh take on it by making the main characters bats. He keeps fairly realistic (of course, there are some creative liberties, but I wont ruin that) by characterizing each bat through their species. Another interesting note on the same topic, is that Oppel keeps with bats having no colour vision and manages to write the entire book with no reference to colour (black, grey, white, and silver are used but not technically colours). For a child, the series provides plenty of thinking material, and knowledge. I was the only kid I knew growing up who knew the Latin names of several bat species!