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Falcon in the Glass

de Susan Fletcher

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"Eleven-year-old Renzo must teach himself to blow glass with the help of a girl who has a mysterious connection to her falcon"--
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During my junior year of college, I was lucky enough to get to travel to Italy. Part of the trip was Venice and a quick jaunt out to Murano. Ever since I’ve been unable to resist any book set in Murano, not that it’s easy to resist any book set anywhere I haven’t traveled or want to travel. Still, Murano, for some reason, has a special place in my heart. Thus, though I’d not really heard much about this middle grade title, I could not resist it. While I did enjoy the setting, my heart wasn’t really in the story, which wasn’t as epic as the sort of fare I am used to.

Read the full review at A Reader of Fictions. ( )
  A_Reader_of_Fictions | Jun 29, 2014 |
Set in 1497 Venice, Falcon in the Glass tells the story of Renzo and Letta, two young teens burdened with responsibility. ( )
  bookwren | Aug 3, 2013 |
Books like this are necessary to remind children (and adults) that historical fiction can be fun. "Falcon in the Glass" is a well written, albeit fanciful tale of Renaissance Venice. Set in the competitive and secretive world of glassmaking, the story follows Renzo, whose dreams of being a master glassworker were interrupted by the assassination of his father. Placed in the role of glassworks drudge, Renzo's dreams to prove himself and support his family take a wild turn when he meets a rag-tag group of street children and their companion birds. The details surrounding the making of the glass and life in this era are fascinating and romanticized: the former I appreciate and the latter I forgive.

Without giving too much away, this is a story about the meaning of honor, friendship and family disguised as a fast paced historical adventure novel. The people in this world live in a grey area, where your honor and duty may conflict with the well being of others. Ms. Fletcher allows the consequences and complications resulting from this paradox to lead the plot. She succeeds largely because she excels at writing characters, a trait which pays off throughout the book. I enjoyed ALL of the characters, watching how they interacted and developed, guessing what they would do and say. By the end, I was fully involved with the story. This is an excellent recommendation for late elementary/middle school kids who think they only like reading fantasy.

(This review is based on an ARC procured from a co-worker) ( )
  Maryk205 | May 23, 2013 |
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