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The Fetch

Review

The Fetch

Since his death in England in 1574 at the age of 19, Calder has been a loyal and obedient squire in the Order of the Fetch. As a Fetch, Calder is bound to obey seven vows, and he holds a key to escort souls through Death’s Door. Three of the most important vows he must honor are “to open Death’s Door and accept each soul’s choice to live or die, never to alter a soul’s journey through the Aisle of Unearthing and never to upset the world of the earthbound.”

Except for some animals and occasionally young children who are especially perceptive, Fetches are invisible. As a Fetch, Calder is supposed to be indifferent to the outcomes of Death Scenes. Calder has remained faithful to his vows until one winter in 1904 when he is called to escort a dying baby boy through Death’s Door into the Aisle of Understanding.

While in the baby’s nursery, Fetch sees a beautiful woman with a “halo of reddish-golden hair” and becomes transfixed. Also in the nursery he notices a young girl whose actions make him realize she sees him. Rather than remaining indifferent to the baby’s death, Calder hopes the boy will live. He is relieved when the child chooses life, and during his visit he gives the woman with the reddish-golden hair a name --- Glory.

Years later Calder is called to a Death Scene and is surprised to find the same boy, now eight years old, once again dying. Never before has he been sent to the same human twice. As he watches Glory and the other family members pray for a recovery, the child reaches out to Calder and asks to die. Rather than accepting this choice and escorting the boy's soul through Death’s Door, Calder breaks his vow and convinces the youngster to live, for the sake of Glory.

Calder’s interference and his further disobedience to his vows create disharmony in the heavenly domain and alter the course of history on earth. Because of his actions, Calder finds himself trapped in a mortal body and embroiled in the bloodshed, treachery and chaos of the Russian Revolution.

Laura Whitcomb, author of A CERTAIN SLANT OF LIGHT, has written a fascinating story about the essence of life and death and the hereafter. She weaves historical events surrounding the Russian Revolution with characters in a novel that is, above all, a tender tale about the enduring power of love. While Calder, the main protagonist, is a young man, because of his love interest and Whitcomb’s gentle touch, THE FETCH should appeal to both middle-grade and high school boys and girls.

Reviewed by Donna Volkenannt on February 2, 2009

The Fetch
by Laura Whitcomb

  • Publication Date: October 25, 2010
  • Genres: Romance, Supernatural
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Graphia
  • ISBN-10: 0547411634
  • ISBN-13: 9780547411637