The Whisperling

By Hayley Hoskins (Puffin)

The Whisperling

Review by Ayesha
The Whisperling written by Hayley Hoskins is a historical novel set in 1897. It follows the story of the heroine: Margaret (Peggy)Devona, on her quest to prove that her best friend, Sally, is innocent of a murder she has been accused of committing.

The book starts off with Peggy living a mostly provincial life in a small village. She lives with her parents who work as the village undertakers, preparing dead bodies for burial or cremation and making arrangements for funerals. A few pages in, the reader finds out that Peggy is a Whisperling - a person who can speak to ghosts - but hides it from the villagers to try and stay safe. Soon enough, Peggy finds out Sally has been accused of the murder of Lady Stanton and taken to the gaol(jail) to be put on trial and possibly killed. Peggy believes her friend to be innocent and is determined to prove it by using her abilities as a Whisperling to save Sally.

I liked the book for many reasons, one of them being the fact that Peggy is a unique, supernatural character but she lives in a normal world. It’s almost comforting to think there is some magic around us. It also made me think about all the people who were tried and found guilty even though they may have been innocent, and how once the powers that be had decided their fate, their life could never again be the same. It made me think about the unfairness of these trials and the miscarriages of justices - apart from being a spooky book, these themes also made it quite emotional.

The book explores multiple themes, but I think this book is mostly about coming-of-age and how growing up might have been different for children in the past, the difference between truth and lies, and justice. The book really got me thinking about how unfair life may have been for people back then. I can tell the author has put a lot of effort into this book because it is very accurate and as well as giving me an entertaining read it has also supplied me with knowledge for the future.

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