This is the story of Kit, a half-fairy princess, a highwayman, a tightrope walker, a man who’s lost his memory and more.
The Accidental Highwayman is not a “swashbuckler.” I listened to the digital audiobook and didn’t see that description of this story until I came to its Goodread page. That’s a positive thing because I may have felt cheated otherwise.
Though it has a large cast of characters, the pace is quite slow. This is a book that can be savored but I see how it could just as easily be put aside.
I confess, I nearly gave it up when I went nearly four chapters in a row with nothing happening other than the wagon moving onwards. But, I stuck with it to the end.
The style of storytelling feels more like a Victorian era book rather than a modern fairytale. I believe this was a purposeful choice on the part of Ben Tripp- to give it a faux-classic feel.
I feel like The Princess Bride could be an apt comparison if you slowedBride‘s pacing way down and remove almost half of the adventure. The Accidental Highwayman has charm in my opinion, but not a lot of substance.
That being said, it contains one of the most over-the-top romantic lines I’ve ever heard in an audiobook: “If I don’t kiss you, I shall perish.”pg 269. If you like that kind of thing, you might enjoy this book very much. Think “slow burning wick” of a romance. Very slow. And not graphic but sweet.
Actually, The Accidental Highwayman was sort of like The Night Circus but with more goblins and less immersive descriptions. In that book, as in this, I felt like the story was reaching for more but never quite made it.
In conclusion, I recommend this book for readers with buckets of patience and a penchant for the fantastical and overly dramatic.
Thanks for reading!