Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Jepp, Who Defied the Stars by Katherine Marsh

Jepp has helped his mother with her country inn for his entire life. But when a stranger comes to visit he asks to take Jepp to court to become one of the royal dwarves.  Enticed by a life of riches and admiration Jepp goes along.  At first he is awed by the amount of food and the grand clothing he is given along with the other dwarves who serve the Infanta.  But he soon figures out that they are often humiliated during their performances and that their fate relies on their ability to keep the royals entertained.  Jepp is particularly drawn to Lia but when he tries to help her escape after she is hurt he ends up being sent far away to begin a new life as a servant, treated no better than a dog.  But is Jepp fated to be a peon his entire life or can he show his new master that there is more to him than meets the eye?  This title is inspired by true accounts of court dwarves as well as the work of Tycho Brahe who becomes Jepp's new master.  I had a hard time getting through the book and was uninspired by Jepp's search for his father and mad once he found him but discovered what had happened to his fortune.  I can appreciate how well-written the book is so I think if you are a historical fiction fan, you might really enjoy this title.