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Pegasus [Hardcover]

Robin McKinley
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Nov. 2 2010
Because of a thousand-year-old alliance between humans and pegasi, Princess Sylviianel is ceremonially bound to Ebon, her own pegasus, on her twelfth birthday. The two species coexist peacefully, despite the language barriers separating them. Humans and pegasi both rely on specially trained Speaker magicians as the only means of real communication.

But it's different for Sylvi and Ebon. They can understand each other. They quickly grow close-so close that their bond becomes a threat to the status quo-and possibly to the future safety of their two nations.

New York Times bestselling author Robin McKinley weaves an unforgettable tale of unbreakable friendship, mythical creatures and courtly drama destined to become a classic.

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About the Author

Robin McKinley has won various awards and citations for her writing, including the Newbery Medal for The Hero and the Crown and a Newbery Honor for The Blue Sword. Her other books include Sunshine; the New York Times bestseller Spindle's End; two novel-length retellings of the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Beauty and Rose Daughter; and a retelling of the Robin Hood legend, The Outlaws of Sherwood. She lives with her husband, the English writer Peter Dickinson.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful read. May 8 2011
Pegasus is the wonderfully layered and detailed story fans of Robin Mckinley expect and love. And while some decry the ending as a cliff hanger it was not the author's intention to make it so. Mckinley is know to be sequel shy which makes if very frustrating to those who grew up reading Blue Sword and Hero and the Crown. Another novel in her Damar series is probably the most requested amongst fans. Yet as Mckinley has said, it is whatever story that makes itself most insistent and appealing to her that she writes. One cannot fault that when she has created such wonderful tomes as Sunshine, Dragonhaven, Chalice and so many others. And this time she will not leave readers hanging as Pegasus II is currently in the works (in between hurtling hellhounds, knitting, handbell ringing and gardening) and scheduled to be out in 2012. I for one am glad to wait for any new Mckinley novel to add to my collection as they are always entertaining and fantastic.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars glad theres a II ! Jan. 10 2011
Loved it! but then I knew I would. A fine fantasy world created for us I can't wait for the next book!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.4 out of 5 stars  163 reviews
112 of 117 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Half a book ALERT! Update - 1/3 OF A BOOK ALERT! Nov. 16 2010
By YA book lover - Published on
This is only a half of the book!!!

I thought I would get this out of the way first. Truly, there was not even an attempt to wrap up anything in this novel, not even temporarily. "Pegasus" ended mid-scene, mid-conflict, almost mid-sentence. It will be quite a laugh if McKinley never finishes this sequel.

Now onto the story itself. I was glad to be back to the old-school princess-fairy-tale McKinley, after the genre detour "Sunshine" was. If you ever read fantasy written by the author, you already know the key elements of her stories: meticulous, imaginative world building, a young, strong heroine who has to come to terms with her own powers and grow into her responsibilities and attain self-confidence, friendships with animals, magic, all accompanied by the most gorgeous writing. All of this was in "Pegasus."

The moment I opened the book, I was completely enchanted by the world McKinley had created and by the words she used to describe it. The centuries-old alliance between humans and pegasi, their complicated communications, binding rituals - all of it was so new, so unique, so detailed and well thought-through. And then the moment Ebon, the main character's Sylvi's bond-mate, entered the picture, I totally fell in love with this naughty, outspoken, mischievous pegasus. And the way MckKinley described Ebon tumbling into Sylvi's window, or spread his wings, or a tiny pegasus playing with Sylvi, it made me grin in delight. McKinley just has such a genius way with words, I can't explain it.

But (of course there is a but), as much as I loved the world building and gorgeous writing, it just wasn't enough for me. It wasn't that the book was light on plot, but like in all McKinley books, the plot was driven by the main character's internal struggles and growth. And again, it's fine by me, generally. I loved Harry's personal journey in "The Blue Sword," but that book was only 270 pages and "Pegasus" - 400 and only half of the story. I don't know about other readers, but I can enjoy luscious, descriptive and reflective writing for only so long, at about page 200 I want some action, and so happened here. By the middle of the book my attention started to waver and I began skimming a bit, trying to get to the end or at least some excitement faster. Basically, it seemed the narration got a little too indulgent. For what the plot was, the book was way too long. I could literally summarize the entire novel in one paragraph. I would have enjoyed it much more if the whole story only took one 300-page volume to tell.

I can see how "Pegasus"'s reviews can be all over the place. Fans of McKinley's writing and those who enjoy leisurely, slow paced quality of it, will love the novel, and rightfully so. Those who prefer books with more action and despise being left with no resolutions, will hate it. I am somewhere in the middle. At this point I am moderately interested to know how it all works out, but will I still be in 2014, when the sequel comes out?
31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Only Part One of a Two Part Book....? Nov. 25 2010
By FoxRunning - Published on
My husband recently got me "Pegasus", and I read it while recently sick in bed. It was a treat to have a book by the author of "Deerskin", and I read it avidly at first. But then,noticing that I was more than halfway through the book, and it was moving at an unusually slow pace, I began to wonder what was going on. When it came to the last chapter, I was totally bewildered and upset, feeling extremely cheated, and more than a little angry at Ms.McKinley to have written a book that ended with no ending. There is no notice anywhere in the book that it is supposed to be a two part book...normally when this is done, the author puts a snippet of the first chapter of the second book in after the last chapter, to show readers that the book is not intended to be a standalone. But for most buyers of this book, I bet they dont know this- I found out only by reading the reviews here.

A note to the publisher-*PLEASE* drag a few pages of the second book out of Ms McKinley, and add them to future printings, or you are going to lose buyers of both this and the second book. This one appears to the unwary reader to be a standalone, and it is *extremely* disappointing, taking away much of the joy the reader felt in following the tale of the princess and her bondbrother pegasus. It is a good book, but greatly flawed by this omission, and the incredible lag till the publication of the second one. In my opinion, she rushed this onto the shelves long before she should have...1012 is too distant a date for the next book from this one.
45 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pegaus (Part 1) Nov. 8 2010
By E. Bradley - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I will preface this with the acknowledgment that this book is:
1) Part One of a Two-Part Pair
2) A Cliffhanger book.

The trouble with Pegasus, compared to other McKinley books is that it is not a one-shot volume. This is shocking, because she never writes sequels. Every McKinley book ever has been a one-volume novel, even when related to other novels. That this has changed so suddenly has left many fans bewildered.

Does this make Pegasus less brilliant? No.

The world-building is intricate, perhaps because it is so very different from our own. The geography, culture, customs, history, it's all there, making this world believable, and real enough to step into. The characters, also, are fascinating. Sylvi and Ebon most especially, but also their families and enemies. There does not seem to be even a single superfluous character in the entire volume.

The narrative is a little different from normal-- because the world is so different, and there is so *much* to fit into each volume, some of it must be explained with flashbacks. Several reviews have mentioned disliking flashbacks, or finding it to be distracting, but I feel like they all served their purpose.

I really did love this book, and I felt like despite the lack of sword-waving and adventure, it was still suspenseful and fascinating. I look forward to seeing what comes next.
27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Only HALF a book! Nov. 13 2010
By megan ringenbach - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This isn't book one in a series, or a whole book on its own. Pegasus is half a book. It ends, just as the conflict begins. I'm sure there is a second part coming. Robin McKinley is too much of an expert to just end the book there, but as a reader, I feel abandoned mid-story.

A recent Connie Willis book was split in two also. I hope that we can make publishers realize this is unacceptable. If a book is written with the intention of splitting it, then it can have a smaller arc within the series arc. Just chopping it in two, however, kills any momentum the story gained.

If I had known this was half a book, I would not have paid for it. Robin Mckinley or not, I don't buy half books. That is ridiculous.
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A good idea but . . . Dec 4 2010
By kfquer - Published on
I have read and reread McKinley's books since "Beauty" first came out. I doubt that I'll reread "Pegasus" or bother with the sequel--which I knew nothing about. Count me among those shocked and disappointed at the ending. As the pages thinned at the end I wondered how she could possibly wrap up the story, to find she didn't bother--or maybe doesn't know how. Clearly the relationship between Prncess Silvi and the pegasus Ebon is more than brotherly or best friends; apart from the telepathic attunement, she loves being near him physically--where does McKinley think she's going with that? There's no clue in the book that magic can turn her into a pegasus also, but her longing to stay in the pegasus land and increasing dislike of her human body suggest perhaps in part 2 she will become one--so much for her learning to deal with the world. The other problem with the book is McKinley's increasingly didactic style; other reviewers mention her world-building, and I'm getting the impression, from "Sunshine" and "Chalice" also, that she would rather create the world, imagine all the details--and tell us every one of them--than tell the story. She doesn't weave the details in, she lays them out in sometimes repetitive lengths of exposition. "Pegasus" is 400 pages long; there should have been room for the story. At least "Sunshine" ended with a battle won, even though the war wasn't over and the relationships between Sunshine, Mel, and Con were unresolved; McKinley didn't do a sequel to that book and it makes me wonder if she will bother this time either.
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