Saturday, January 8, 2011

The Choir Boats by Daniel A. Rabuzzi

The Choir Boats:
Longing for Yount
by Daniel A. Rabuzzi
illustrated by Deborah Mills

Published: 2009
Genre: Fantasy, Historical, YA
Paperback: 408 pages
Rating: 5

Description from the amazon:
What would you give to make good on the sins of your past?

For merchant Barnabas McDoon, the answer is: everything.

When emissaries from a world called Yount offer Barnabas a chance to redeem himself, he accepts their price-to voyage to Yount with the key that only he can use to unlock the door to their prison.

But bleak forces seek to stop him: Yount's jailer, a once-human wizard who craves his own salvation, kidnaps Barnabas's nephew. A fallen angel-a monstrous owl with eyes of fire-will unleash Hell if Yount is freed.

And, meanwhile, Barnabas' niece, Sally, and a mysterious pauper named Maggie seek with dream-songs to wake the sleeping goddess who may be the only hope for Yount and Earth alike.

Per Daniel:
The Choir Boats explores issues of race, gender, sin, and salvation, and includes a mysterious letter, knuckledogs, carkodrillos, smilax root, goat stew, and one very fierce golden cat.

Per Wowio:
Described as “vibrant” and rich with “verve and wit,” it’s a seagoing fantasy yarn that is like “Gulliver’s Travels crossed with The Golden Compass and a dollop of Pride and Prejudice.”

Longing for Yount
The Indigo Pheasant - tentative title due 2012

Amusing quote:
"Well, buttons and beeswax," said Barnabas...
- chapter 1, page 20

Imagery quote:
Magpies cried above the gables, horses whinnied outside, an oyster-man hawked his wares in the street.
- chapter 1, page 23

My two-bits:
In-a-word(s): sapere aude - dare to know
Loved the word play and names like, Barnabus Eusebius Playdermon McDoon and Salmius Nalmius Nax throughout this book.

This is a gem of a book with an adventure filled with a variety of quirky, unsavory and heroic characters as well as mysteries to solve.

I should mention too that you are treated to chapter heading illustrations like the dolphin doorknocker above.

Note from author:
Sharing some good news: Chizine Publications will put out the sequel to my novel The Choir Boats, tentatively titled The Indigo Pheasant, spring/summer 2012.

If you or any of your blog-followers have read The Choir Boats, I would be keen to hear your help me shape the story as it continues to unfold.

All best, Daniel

Please feel free to leave comments on this post and include a link to your review too.


* review copy courtesy of author

* image source per Daniel's site: The McDoon residence Dolphin Doorknocker illustrated by Deborah Mills.

* part of my Nautical reading challenge


  1. The Choir Boats sounds pretty good, Vii - haven't heard of this series before :)
    I like the fierce golden cat, but don't trust that mysterious pauper person lol

    LOVE that doorknocker!!!!

  2. Yah! What a cool way to help out this author. :)
    (not an entry)

  3. thank you for your review! I have the e-book version, but now I have to buy the paperback!


Imagination Designs
Images from: Lovelytocu