The Call | Book Review

The Call | Book Review

Author: Peader O’Guilin

Publisher: David Fickling Books

AUTHOR Peader O’Guilin begins his acknowledgments informing the reader that The Call is a grim book, and boy does he keep to his word. Ireland, 25 years in the future, neither Wales nor Scotland can be seen from the shores. The internet is a thing of the past and the island is inhabited by the aging, mourning veterans, tutors, those who have the fortune or misfortune of surviving their own Call. The few who do breed can only have their children until the age of ten years.

Nessa Doherty, along with her friend Megan are bussed off to the college where they are trained waiting for the day when they will disappear for three minutes, four seconds to the Grey Land; will they survive? The Treaty made centuries before between the Irish and the Sidhe has been infringed and children rarely make it past age 15.

Our heroine Nessa suffered from polio and so has to make up for her inadequacies with sheer grit and intelligence. This is not easy reading; if it were an album it’s akin to Manic Street Preachers’ Holy Bible. If it was painted, Goya’s tortured demons spring to mind; yet, the pace is frantic, the characters and plot enthralling. O’Guilin has created a world worth a short, head-shattering visit.

Highly recommended and readers should keep an eye out for its sequel, The Cauldron.

By Conor O’Neill

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