Wild Rover No More: Being the Last Recorded Account of the Life and Times of Jacky Faber by L. A. Meyer
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014.
I first came across Jacky Faber when I was taking a YA library class and needed to review an audiobook. I picked up Bloody Jack, the first book in the series, pretty much by chance, and was blown away by it (also props to the reader, Katherine Kellgren, who does a bang up job of narration). Since then, I’ve been slowly chugging my way through the series – sinking into the comfort of familiarity. When I got a chance to review the final book, I couldn’t pass it up, even though I’m only up to book 6. Sadly L. A. Meyer died in July, so Jacky truly will play the wild rover no more. Anyhoo, here’s my review:
In this 12th and final book in the series, set in 1809, Mary ‘Jacky’ Faber is once again on the run from the law, and once again forcibly separated from her long suffering on-again off-again fiancé Jaimy.
As usual, Jacky gets herself in a pickle – this time she is unjustly accused of treason – and has to go undercover, initially as a governess and then as a circus artiste and exotic dancer. There is the typical fun of Jacky squeaking an escape just as the authorities catch up with her.
Jacky continues to barrel her way through life, making friends and enemies along the way, but always with humor, daring and self-awareness. Characters from previous escapades appear, both friends and foes, and everyone’s story is efficiently wrapped up, sometimes without much finesse.
Though not as fresh and original as the first books in the series – dare I say that it is a little formulaic, but I do like the formula – Wild Rover will provide fans with all the essentials of a Bloody Jack book: convoluted plot, thrills, a little saucy romance and our charmingly chirpy and resourceful heroine. New readers who start here should get enough of a taste to tempt them to go back to the beginning of the tale.