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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Geepling is a romantic fable for young adults written by Lana Petelis. Geep was a rare and special being; his mother was a sheep and his father a goat. He had no recollections of his father, but his mother was there for him from his first memories. She brought him to the Friendly Utopian Farm where she knew they would find a safe haven, but she was all too aware that life would be difficult for her little boy. Geep had qualities that Jim, the owner of the farm and the man who took care of the inhabitants, admired. He was a handsome creature, but Jim bemoaned the fact that all his good traits could never be passed on to his offspring. Geep, after all, was a hybrid and would never have offspring. The other animals at the farm sang a song about him to their young ones. It described him as a thief, as someone to avoid. For a female, being with Geep would mean no life line extending beyond her own. Geep's mom had died shortly after she brought him to the farm, so Geep's life was a lonely one. His only friend was the mule that worked on the farm, and Geep knew instinctively that Shara, the sheep he couldn't take his eyes off, could never know how much he cared about her.
Lana Petelis' romantic coming of age tale, Geepling, will speak eloquently to anyone who's ever felt different, or been excluded by those considered normal or belonging to a group. Geep's loneliness is a tangible thing that transcends the fact that he is a goat-sheep hybrid, and that his wise old mentor is a mule. Mule's teachings speak of other types of legacies, of transcending the biological imperative of extending one’s life line through procreation. Mule, another sterile hybrid, gives life through his teachings, and he opens the eyes of Geep and the other young ones at the farm to alternative ways of thinking about the world and one's purpose in it. Geepling is one of those disarming little fables that has at its base some hefty thought-provoking and eye-opening wisdom to impart. And, yes, there's a sweet and quite forbidden romance threaded through it as well. Geepling is special, and it made me ponder the wisdom imparted and also smile, which is very nice indeed. It's most highly recommended.