Saturday, September 22, 2012

ARC Review: The Paladin Prophecy by Mark Frost

The Paladin Prophecy
Author: Mark Frost
Publication: Random House Books for Young Readers (September 25, 2012)

Description: Readers of I Am Number Four, The Maze Runner, and Legend will love this exciting new adventure series by the co-creator of the groundbreaking television show Twin Peaks, with its unique combination of mystery, heart-pounding action, and the supernatural.

Will West is careful to live life under the radar. At his parents' insistence, he's made sure to get mediocre grades and to stay in the middle of the pack on his cross-country team. Then Will slips up, accidentally scoring off the charts on a nationwide exam.

Now Will is being courted by an exclusive prep school . . . and followed by men driving black sedans. When Will suddenly loses his parents, he must flee to the school. There he begins to explore all that he's capable of--physical and mental feats that should be impossible--and learns that his abilities are connected to a struggle between titanic forces that has lasted for millennia.

My Thoughts: This story had lots of familiar elements - a young man who has been educated by his parents to keep his abilities secret, frequent moves without explanation, a chance to attend a special school for exceptional kids, unknown enemies who seem to be everywhere. The way Frost wove them together made a compelling and very readable tale. 

Will West had been following his parents' instruction to be average but he blew it when he scored off the charts on a standardized test given to all the kids in the US. Now he is being followed by men in black sedans with heavily frosted glass. He's been recruited and offered a full scholarship to the Center - a secretive school in rural Wisconsin. His mother is acting strangely and he isn't sure his father has been affected too. He runs - with the aide of an Australian guy named Dave in a hot car - to the school. Will's father had given him a variety of rules to live by which Will wrote in a notebook. He took it and a picture of his parents when he ran. The rules help him keep his parents close and help him make decisions in dangerous situations.

Once he arrives at the school he finds that he hasn't completely outrun the bad guys. He makes friends with the kids who share his pod - Brooke, Elise, Ajay and Nick - and makes an enemy of Lyle who is the Provost Marshall of his dorm. He finds that there is a secret society in the school that has some evil plans. They are in league with some Others who have been locked into a prison in the NeverWas as a result of a war long ago. Now those Others are trying to escape and take over the Earth again.

Dave tells Will that he is his guardian angel but has a limited number of times he can offer assistance. He also tells Will that he is an initiate for the side of good in this epic war between Good and Evil. Will and his friends have a number of adventures as they try to find out who the members of the secret society are and what their goal is. 

I thought Will and his friends were well-developed characters who had unique strengths and abilities. I was especially fond of Nick who provided a sense of comic relief when things were especially tense but who also was incredibly brave and loyal. And I really want some of the technology the author had in the story. I want a tablet like the ones described with its avatar. 

This book was a good start to a series that I think will be very popular - especially with my middle grade boys. I can't wait to share it with them. I was glad to add it to my next book order.

Favorite Quote:
This is where I live now.He'd faced this moment many times before. He was used to starting over.
But never alone. Never without my parents.Now that he was here - and safe - the enormity of his less came rushing at him. He wrestled those feelings down before the anguish overwhelmed him.
I'm not going to grieve. I'm not going to give whoever did this to us the satisfaction. I know they're still alive and I'm going to fight until I find them.He'd been dropped into this new life now. He had to stay strong and keep moving forward. That what his parents would want him to do.
I got this one from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. You can buy your copy here.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I love getting comments. Let me know what you think.

This blog is now officially declared an Award Free zone! I do appreciate your kindness in thinking of me and I am humbled by your generosity. Your comments are award enough for me. Comment away!