J.J. Liddy has an amazing talent. He can play the fiddle better then pretty much everyone in his quaint Irish village. The thing is though, there just isn’t enough time in the day to practice, go to school, and digest the news that his grandfather is a murderer. What’s even worse though is that there seems to be less and less time as the days go by, and it’s not just J.J. noticing it.
When his mother asks for more time for her birthday, J.J. is determined to get it for her, even though it seems like an impossible task for a fifteen year old. That is until a neighbor offers her help and leads him to Tir na n’Og, a faery land of eternal youth. Here he meets Aengus Og, who agrees to help in his quest for time. The only constraint that J.J. must abide by in order to take some time is to help Aengus Og find out where the time leak is. You see Tir na n’Og, while a place where time stands still, is slowly starting to move again, and it’s not a good thing. Setting out on an adventure to not only find time, but also stop it, J.J. learns much about himself and the faery world of Tir na n’Og.
This book was average. To me, nothing stood out in particular, but there was nothing really bad about the book. The story was interesting, the characters were nice enough, and the book was well written. I think the main problem is the book didn’t really have anything that made it sparkle. The book moved very quickly, even though it was 400+ pages, and it gave you the feeling that you hadn’t gotten that far, when you really had. One thing that I thought was really neat was the author included little pieces of music at the beginning of each chapter, the titles of which gave a brief view into what was going to happen next. Another positive aspect of the book was the magnitude of Irish culture that was mixed into the book. I felt like I got a really accurate picture of Irish life and beliefs while reading this book. The folklore and myths, as well as the everyday activities that the characters participated were really interesting. Reading about them really made me feel like I was actually in Ireland feeling the rain and fresh air for myself. I think people who really like fantasy books, or relunctant readers looking for a good read, would greatly enjoy this book. While it wasn’t my favorite, it still was a good book and has very much proved itself in the fact that it has received prizes such as Whitbread Children’s Book Award and the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize.