Review Blog

Sep 30 2014

Tiger stone by Deryn Mansell

cover image

Black Dog Books, 2014. ISBN 9781742032399.
(Age: 12+) Highly recommended. Kancil is the lowest servant currently serving in Big Uncle's house. Her teak coloured eyes claim that she is the daughter of a bandit and the villagers don't like the Sunda bandits. Born and raised for the first part of her life in Sunda, Java, Kancil and her mother must make a journey from the place where her father and brother died to where Mother's family live in Mataram. 'When you are sworn to silence it pays to keep your eyes and ears open'.
This novel set in 14th century Indonesia looks at a girl dealing with the recent death of her father and the suspicious circumstances occurring in the new village, she hates the idea of calling home. When Kancil arrives in Mataram she is instructed that she must never speak around anyone but Mother and Small Aunt, the slightest slip of the tongue could easily give away the story they had created that allowed them to stay safe with their family. This story is based on the loose friendship between Kancil and Kitchen Boy and how they warn the fellow villagers before it is too late.
Tiger stone
is a fantastic single book, areas and characters are clearly outlined before the story even starts. The author doesn't have to explain everything so the story can move easily without long descriptions of characters or places. The beginning of the book starts with a girl names Aryani saying goodbye to her grandmother who gives her a tiger stone necklace. A time jump occurs (700 years to be exact) and suddenly we are given Kancil's story.
It is extremely difficult to fault this book. It's a great read for people who enjoy historical fiction and for those that don't want to have to commit to a long series. Tiger stone is a book that can easily be devoured in one sitting and I highly recommend anyone to do so.
Azriel P. (Student)

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