Thursday, November 15, 2007

Tithe - Book Review - 7.5/10

Holly Black's first "Spiderwick" readers aren't little children any more, and it would seem that she intends to grow up her writing in tandem. "Tithe" explores the same world "Spiderwick" did, but with a much darker, sexual, and transformational vision. Typical of the contemporary fairy tale for teens, it follows the standard "edgy" young adult protagonist who skips school, drinks, smokes, and is sexually aware (if not active). However, while Black starts out following in the footsteps of Francesca Lia Block with her rock and roll urban fantasy world, she deviates about mid-way through from her psychadelic predecessor's path, straying more into the world Charles De Lint has been perfecting for the bulk of his writing career. It's not brilliant, but it is fun, and lives up to the press of being a modern "faerie" not fairy tale. The world Black takes us into is definitely the perilous realm, where not everyone necessarily lives happily ever after.

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