by Katherine Langrish
Cover Artist: Mark Fredrickson
Review by Beth Slater
Eos Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780060583095
Date: 01 February 2008 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
Peer is happily living with Hilde and her family in this second installment of Langrish's Troll series. Peer's two uncles are trapped beneath the earth with the trolls as human servants after trying to trade the children as slaves in Troll Fell. Now, three years later, Peer is out fishing with his friend Bjorn when strange events start all over again.
On his way up the hill, Kersten, Bjorn's wife of seven years, suddenly appears and thrusts her newborn daughter into Peer's arms and runs off to the beach, to disappear into the surf. Peer manages to warn Bjorn before taking the baby back to the cottage to wait out the vicious thunderstorm, but Peer is forced out and up the hill to his adopted family in fear for the child's life.Peer takes the child to be cared for by Gudrun, Hilde's mother, who is still nursing her son. While the entire village searches for Kersten, rumors abound of selkies and seal-people until eventually no one in the village will help Bjorn for fear of reprisal from the sea people –- except Peer and his family. In the midst of this chaos, Peer has decided to support himself by taking over the mill, with thoughts of impressing Hilde in the back of his mind. The night he fought thru the storm he saw the mill moving –- or thought he did –- and realized that he could be the miller now that his uncles were gone. Gudrun, Ralf, and Peer split their time between the farm and the mill to keep things going during the seasons, fighting off the trolls, the lubbers, and Granny Green-teeth while helping Bjorn and with the baby-sitting.
The face off comes once again with everything and everyone running amok and more evil beings released from the earth to use some ghastly skills to work for the trolls. Meanwhile they are unknowingly assisting one another and others in more dastardly deeds, causing Peer and his friends to see just how much love and loyalty can cure so many ailments.
Langrish's tales are woven around Norse tales and mythology, and Peer's life is intertwined with creatures far and wide in air, sea, and land. Good and evil don't necessarily exist with them –- more situations of circumstance and living. Granny Green-teeth takes creatures because she is lonely –- but to those above the water she is cruel and scary because she kills.
The emotions and descriptions are amazing and wonderful. I am really enjoying this series and will be quite sad to leave this world behind when the trilogy is over. This may be for young adult fantasy readers, but it's not just for them.