A plague of rats. Children going missing. A giant beast attacking just outside the walls of Hamlin. And one young woman determined to save her town.
Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads.
The Piper's Pursuit
Series: Hagenheim #10
Author: Melanie Dickerson
Publication Date: December 3, 2019
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Page Count: 320
Format: Paperback ARC
Genre: Christian Fiction, Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Romance, Fantasy, Retelling
Cover Artist: -
My Rating: ★★★1/2
A plague of rats. A giant beast outside the village walls. A host of missing children. And one young woman determined to save her people.
In 1424 Hamlin, Katerina faces threats from all sides. An outbreak of rats has overtaken the village, a mysterious beast is on a killing rampage of the village’s children, and her evil stepfather is a dark presence inside the walls of her own home. Katerina is determined to hunt and kill the Beast of Hamlin herself before more lives are lost.
When Steffan, the handsome but brash duke’s son, comes to town seeking glory and reward, Katerina decides he might be the ally she’s been looking for—even though the sweet music he plays on his pipe seems the only gentle thing about him. But there’s more to Steffan than she suspects, and she finds drawn to him despite her misgivings.
Can Katerina and Steffan stop the enemy from stealing every child of Hamlin? Or will their interference create a worse fate for them all? Melanie Dickerson delivers another exciting fairy tale journey of intrigue and romance in this reimagining of the classic Pied Piper story.
I received a copy of this book via the publisher, Thomas Nelson and The Fantastic Flying Book Club in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! In no way does this affect my rating or review.
All included quotes have been taken from an ARC and may not match the finished publication.
Content Warning: Abduction, Death, Child Labor
The beast that haunts the town of Hamlin has been blamed for the deaths and disappearances of many. Rats arrived around the same time the beast did, and swarm the streets, harassing the citizens. Katerina, the main protagonist, tracks the beast daily, in an attempt to kill it and free the people of Hamlin. One day on one of her patrols, she comes upon one of the girls that has been missing, and brings her home. Not long after, a stranger comes riding into town. Katerina learns that he is the son of the duke that governs the town, and comes in search of the beast as well. Whether she likes it or not, the two begin to work together to ride Hamlin of the pestilent beast and rats.
The Piper’s Pursuit is a quick, easy read. With a case of Insta-love vs. Insta-hate, a somewhat comical relationship ensues between the two main characters, Katerina and Steffan. Katerina, the stepdaughter to Hamlin’s mayor, is incredibly strong-willed, and protective. Having a bad experience throughout her life with men, she isn’t apt to trust one quickly, which is the root of the issue between her and Steffan upon their acquaintance.
Steffan, the son of the Duke of Hagenheim, has a colorful history. The arrogant, womanizing facade he wears isn’t who he ends up being. Despite Katerina’s attempts to push him away, he somehow charms his way back into her good graces. The unlikely duo quickly find themselves falling into the center of a plot involving the beast of Hamlin, missing children, and a conspiracy that the town won’t believe.
I liked this book, but thought it was pretty predictable from the beginning. Some redundancies made the plot move slowly at times, but it was tolerable. If you are looking for a clean, Young Adult retelling, this may be a good choice for you!
Sexual content: Minimal.
Violence: Moderate, with some injury involved, but nothing gory.
My Rating: ★★★1/2
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Melanie Dickerson is the New York Times bestselling author who combines her love for history, adventure, and romance. Her books have won a Christy Award, two Maggie Awards, The National Reader’s Choice Award, the Christian Retailing’s Best Award, the Book Buyer’s Best Award, the Golden Quill, and the Carol Award. She earned her bachelor’s degree in special education from The University of Alabama and has taught children and adults in the U.S., Germany, and Ukraine. Now she spends her time writing stories of love and adventure near Huntsville, Alabama.
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