Book Reviews

Book Review: The Luck Child

by Rebekah Shafer


No one remembers Cabernet. They only remember the myth, the legend, the name–but not the man. Everyone forgets him.

Only fairy-kind remembers Cabernet, so what else is a wandering, forgotten orphan supposed to do besides get involved with fairy affairs, often acting as the mediator between fairies and humans? It sounds like a perfect way to spend one’s childhood.

Cabernet is content to keep living his daring, magical life and intervene between fairies and humans. That is, until the king forces Cabernet to find out what has been mysteriously sinking ships.

This new mission forces Cabernet to team up with humans who he’d rather not have to work with–including people from his past. The mission also forces Cabernet to confront the terrors of the past, all while trying to save his friends, and his future.

The Luck Child was a super fun book!

I listened to the audiobook, which was narrated by Beauxregard Neylon. I’ll give my thoughts on the audiobook first.

The audiobook was very well done. Neylon did a fantastic job narrating, and his voices for each character were perfect. My only complaint about the narration was that Neylon’s voices for the female characters were very similar. However, there are only about three female characters in the cast, and they never talk to each other, so I never got confused about who was talking. I just would have preferred for the female characters to sound more different. Other than that complaint, the audiobook was fantastic. If you’re an audiobook listener, I’d highly recommend the audiobook version of The Luck Child.

Now onto the story itself!

I’ll start off with the characters. They were all awesome. Seriously. I loved Cabernet’s character and his character voice. However, Maugrim might be my favorite character. Shafer perfectly wrote his cat personality. Maugrim reminded me of my own cats (spoiler: there was a certain scene with Maugrim that made me really sad… if you really love cats, be warned). Adaoramus was also great. All the characters were great. They were all nicely developed as well.

The story unfolds in dual timelines, one following Cabernet’s childhood, and one in the present (about 10-11 years later). Dual timelines in stories are always tricky. You run the risk of the reader being more invested in one timeline than the other and skipping parts of the story. However, Shafer did a nice job balancing the tension of the various timelines and keeping me engaged in both. Because I was listening to the audiobook, I didn’t really have the option of skipping around in the book, but I don’t think I would have even if I’d had a paperback copy. There were only a few points where I was dying to know what was going to happen next in the other timeline and couldn’t wait to get back to that timeline.

I saw a review that suggested that Shafer should have written two books instead of just one, with each of the books following one of the timelines. However, that wouldn’t have worked for the story. The Luck Child needed to be told in a dual timeline because of some of the twists and secrets of the plot.

Getting onto the plot now. The plot was well done and paced nicely. As I said above, Shafer did a nice job of maintaining the tension in both timelines, and I was very curious about what was going to after. I do think that the pacing towards the end of the book may have been slightly off, but I might have only felt that way because of how I was listening to the audiobook.

The worldbuilding was also very nice. I liked the different types of magic and the faeries. I would have loved to learn more about the magic and worldbuilding, but I’m a huge worldbuilding fan.

As far as any complaints about the story… the conclusion felt the tiniest bit confusing about how everything all worked. Like Cabernet, I wished that the Kraken would have provided more explanation. But I might have missed things because I was listening to the audiobook. And while Cabernet’s deck of cards did end up having a role in the plot, I would have liked for them to have had a bigger impact. They were just so neat, and they kept popping up in the story, so I was expecting something bigger to happen with them. But both of those complaints aren’t big things.

Overall, The Luck Child was a very enjoyable book. I’ll definitely listen to it again!

Cautions: two swear words, one blasphemy, one kiss, light/moderate romance *

*Please note that because I listened to the audiobook, I may have missed some cautions.

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