By Brandon Mull
First in the Sky Raiders series by Brandon Mull, I just finished Five Kingdoms. I must admit, the story was well-written and kept my interest throughout. A timely book as it begins on Halloween night when Cole Randolph and his friends check out a haunted house in their neighborhood. Their expectation of being scared is not disappointed after the door is locked and Cole’s friends are taken captive. Feeling responsible, Cole follows the creepy kidnappers through a passage which takes them all to the Outskirts – a world unfamiliar and in-between five kingdoms. In order to free his friends, Cole becomes part of a greater mission to overthrow dangerous villains and semblances of unreality.
Brandon Mull is a wonderful story-teller and weaver of webs, but I must say I was sorry to finish the book and discover I must read four more books to get to the conclusion. Like so many books for young adult readers, this series is about ordinary teens who find they have extraordinary powers in mysterious worlds. Common themes of loyalty, good versus evil, and freedom prevail.
The read is engaging, but doesn’t present anything new or thought-provoking. I can recommend it for entertainment, but your teen is better served reading The Lord of the Rings trilogy by J. R. Tolkien, or The Door Within series by Wayne Thomas Batson.
Mull, Brandon. Five Kingdoms. Sky Raiders. Aladdin, 2014.