Fedor, by Brant Vickers is a young adult novel following our protagonist Fedor Adrianovitch Jefticheff most commonly known as Fedor or as his circus name Jo-Jo The Dog-Faced Boy as he sets out on a mission to truly find himself and his life purpose. Fedor is a young circus performer in the late 19th century, due to a condition where hair grows all over his body except the palms of his hands and the bottom of his feet. He travels the world with the “Greatest Show on Earth” and has the chance of meeting so many wonderful people and historic figures such as Nicholas II of Russia, Jesse James, Mark Twain, and more.
Vickers writes in an effortlessly beautiful tone with vivid imagery and creates details that lead the reader on a phenomenal visual journey. As we, the readers, travel throughout the pages of this book it almost feels like we are right there with the characters experiencing everything Fedor is experiencing. Vickers manages to keep his narrative straightforward and simultaneously descriptive and refined in a way that touches and lures the readers in and leaves us wanting more.
As a reader who is interested in character work and development, I am pleased with Vickers’s approach to writing. Fedor has such great development of each character, however, the most incredible one is of the main character himself. The way that he is introduced as someone who has been mistreated for most of his life and has grown into a young man filled with empathy, understanding, acceptance, determination, and love. Not to mention his knowledge and the way he is always quoting the great Tolstoy as a tribute to his deceased mother who used to read to him and gave him his love for literature and knowledge.
Yet another plus to Fedor is the length of chapters. Vickers keeps his chapters concise and quite short. He brings each one to a fitting end that urges the reader on to the next for more. This is a riveting coming of age story that is a quick read and difficult to put down.
As surprising as it may sound the characters and plot development in this young adult novel will appeal to readers from all age groups and all genres. Fedor is easily one of the most engaging books in the young adult genre I have encountered and I look forward to reading more of Vickers’s work.
Pages: 234 | ASIN: B08Z7MNS6M