Title: The Lost Tide Warriors
Author: Catherine Doyle
Publisher: Bloomsbury Australia
Published: 3rd September 2019
Synopsis: In the brilliant sequel to The Storm Keeper’s Island, winner of the Books are My Bag Readers Award, Fionn Boyle finds himself at the heart of the fight for the island’s survival.
Fionn Boyle has been Storm Keeper of Arranmore for less than six months when thousands of terrifying Soulstalkers arrive on the island. The empty-eyed followers of the dreaded sorceress Morrigan have come to raise their leader and Fionn is powerless to stop them. The Storm Keeper’s magic has deserted him and with his grandfather’s memory waning, Fionn must rely on his friends Shelby and Sam to help him summon Dagda’s army of merrows.
But nobody else believes the ferocious sea creatures even exist. And how can he prove he’s right without any magic? As Fionn begins his search for the lost army, the other islanders prepare for invasion. The battle to save Arranmore has begun.
Six months after the events of The Storm Keeper’s Island, Fionn, Tara and their mother have moved into the cottage on Arranmore with their grandfather. As the new Storm Keeper, everyone is expecting Fionn to know how to defeat Morrigan and the Soulstalkers who are following him around. Yet Fionn is still finding his way around his magic, and there are those who are keen to prove that he is undeserving of the position. Yet with everyone else and his family behind him, Fionn fights to save the island – but at what cost? And what will Fionn have to sacrifice to save his friends?
The second book in the Storm Keeper trilogy continues the story and builds on what the previous book. Sibling rivalry is still strong, yet Tara and Fionn come together against the Bartley Family in this book, and as the older generations bicker – though most are backing up Fionn, the kids – Shelby, Fionn and Sam Patterson – begin the battle to find the Tide Summoner so they can call Dagda’s merrows for help against Morrigan. But the Soulstalkers are there, ready to act on Ivan’s orders to help bring back Morrigan. Loss is a key theme in this novel and is hinted at from the beginning – we know someone beloved might not survive the events of the story. Themes of family and friendship are also strong and bring the world to life.
The focus on Fionn and his growing friendship with Shelby and Sam hints at what is to come as well as celebrating the power of friendship. It is this key relationship that looks as though it is going to help Fionn find his way as Storm Keeper, and hopefully, unite everyone on the island, even those willing to go against the islanders for their own gain.
I’m looking forward to the third book and seeing what happens next. The ever-present threat of the darker forces has driven the story so far, crossing fantasy with the modern world, and themes of family, friendship and mental health, as well as grief and how we cope with grief at various times of our lives and as individuals, as well as the collective grieving for the fate of their home. A great continuation of the trilogy.