In the Bad Bayous the water is thick with guile, a powerful substance that wreaks unpredictable changes on objects, animals, and even people who soak too long.
Sixteen-year-old orphan Yonie Watereye scrapes a living posing as someone who can sense the presence of guile, though in fact she has no such power–it’s her talking cat, LaRue, who secretly performs the work.
While hunting for the secrets of her mother’s past, Yonie discovers that someone is selling dangerous guile-changed objects for malicious purposes. Soon the resourceful Yonie and her feline companion face threats that could end their adventuring forever.
Reviewers have called Guile a refreshingly unique cross-genre novel with fantasy, mystery, and adventure elements.
MY RATING: 3 STARS
Enchanted objects, talking animals, and a treasure hunt. This was charming for sure, and unique, and it threw out any and all cliches you expect with fantasy, adventure, and mystery novels. Unfortunately, it just didn’t sink its claws into me. There was nothing wrong with it, it’s just that it never had the I-gotta that Stephen King sets so much stock in. No urgency to unravel the mysteries and see how it all turns out.
Don’t get me wrong, it had its moments. The setting was an interesting mash up of Southern bayous and Cockney alleys. The characters were likeable, especially LaRue the cat. It wasn’t a demanding read, fairly easy to come back to when convenient. I can appreciate what it is, and accept it as such. The only trouble is that it never really came alive for me. The words on the page were never more than words on a page. There are plenty of books more exciting, thought-provoking, suspenseful, and immersive, but there are a LOT more books that are a lot worse. This one falls somewhere in the middle, and sometimes that’s a good place to be.