One of my earlier memories is my dad reading the Narnia series aloud to us while we were tent-camping along the Oregon coast. I think I was five or younger. I may have to get my details straight on that one, but he started on those books quite early. Mine and my siblings’ first forays into long form fantasy. It was magical. And memorable.
These days we all still read fantasy when we can. Well, to be honest, I had a mini-break from the ages 13-21ish for some reason I couldn’t get on board with an imaginary story world then. I did read the Hobbit and LOTR somewhere in there. But now I happily read fantasy whenever I get a good recommendation.
Like this one.
This book, The Crescent Stone by Matt Mikalatos, releases today from Tyndale House Publishers! It 424 pages of YA fantasy goodness which you will inhale and be grateful for every page.
This is a nervy addition to any fantasy readers’s library. Madeline, the heroine, is sick. She cannot breathe. With very little time left to live, she has a magical encounter where she is promised healing in exchange for a year of work in a war in another world. Her friend Jason, cryptic about his past and honest at all costs, gets pulled in as well. They are immediately drawn into the fray and become aware that all is not as it seems in this new world.
And it all goes on from there.
I really enjoyed this book, especially the social justice and cultural awareness part. We get to see the characters grapple with racism, privilege, socioeconomic status, and how their presuppositions change how they see the world. Each character brings something important and new to the story. Sometimes the social justice vibe comes on a little strong, but for a teen audience it is probably a good balance, though it may feel a little overtly teachy to some. This book is great for teens, and anyone who enjoys the YA Fantasy genre. It is fast-paced, surprising, smart, intense, and funny.
PS: I love Delightful Glitter Lady, who was undeniably delightful and hilarious. And at least one of the top three reasons to read the book.
I’m all in for the sequel.
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(Disclaimers: Thanks to Tyndale Blog Network for the review copy: all opinions are my own. Post contains Amazon affiliate links.)