Bendurana lived his whole life on the sea. Appropriate it should end there, as well. At least, that’s where the currents of wind and tide seem to be carrying him. They’ve pulled him through war and adventure, through love and loss. But when Ben betrays the pirates he finds himself working for, they leave him to the mercy of the sea and its mercurial goddess. He can only hope his story ends with a hero’s death… but after all he’s done, does he deserve one?
After finishing Book 2 in Larkin’s Skyfall Trilogy I found myself yearning for more tales of the Skyfall Isles. As Book 3 is yet to be released, I must suffice myself with the accounts of Larkin’s colorful characters whose histories are told via novella. Currents of Wind and Tide is the telling of the formative moments in the life of the Serendibian, Bendurana. In Book 1 and 2 of the trilogy, we are entreated to bits of Ben’s early life through minute dialogue and internal past reflections.
Currents of Wind and Tide highlights Bendurana’s early childhood traumas, which subsequently tie his life to that of the infamous weretiger of the Skyfall Isles, Malin. Though Malin’s part in this novella is enough to allow the reader an insight into his personality, it does not begin to scratch the surface of the horrors the weretiger will face in the years to come. Bendurana’s story sets the stage for the pirate the boy will become in his later years through the tumultuous ups and downs of love, loss, loyalty and betrayal.
The poetry of Larkin’s writing takes the reader onboard the jukungs and dhows where Bendurana feels most at home, with the scent of the ocean tides haunting every turn of the novella’s pages. I was only slightly disappointed with this novella (which for me is speaking volumes as I tend to deplore novellas). The reason for my displeasure is not the tale, but the lack of luster it is told with. If one pours through Book 1 and 2 in the Skyfall Trilogy they will find the world of the Skyfall Isle painted vividly in their mind’s eye. By no means does that mean that this novella is not worth reading, just beware that though the tale is very well set forth, the bravado in which it is presented falls slightly short of the brilliance of the parent novels.