We are starting Brandon Mull’s Fablehaven series as our family read aloud. It’s good so far. I have not read them before but My Lovely Bride has and she recommended them. It’s funny, she actually didn’t like the first book that well but kept reading the series along with some kids in her class back when and ended up liking the series as a whole. That seems to be reflected in the Goodreads ratings since the first book, while having a respectable 4.01 average is the lowest rated of the series.
The tale concerns a brother and sister who, because of family circumstances, must spend an extended time with their reclusive grandparents. It turns out they are reclusive because they are caretakers of Fablehaven, a sanctuary for magical creatures. It’s not a sanctuary in the normal sense, it’s really to keep the regular world safe from these creatures. And it’s not really completely safe.
Kendra, the sister, is ostensibly the main character but her brother Seth is around the entire time. He’s the reason My Lovely Bride was not enchanted with this on the first read. I mean there are strict rules in this sanctuary and someone needs to break them to get the plot moving. But there’s a big difference in Harry Potter and his friends breaking the rules by sneaking out at night when they’re trying to save Hogwarts from Voldemort or whatever and Seth who actively breaks rules right after he’s already broken a few, realized that the next rule is to ensure the safety of the WORLD and just goes ahead and breaks it anyway. He’s a moron. Some of his early rule breaking isn’t too bad and he makes mistakes that are understandable, but later he just does some plumb dumb things. She said he isn’t bothering her as much on this reading but he’s starting to bother me! We’ll see if he redeems himself in the end or in the next book.
I think we got on the Brandon Mull kick because he wrote the first book in the Spirit Animals series. My daughter has become taken with them since she picked up a couple at her school’s book fair and she and my wife have been passing them back and forth. Apparently there’s a tie in game that goes with it and my daughter has been enjoying that as well. It’s one of those publishing things like they did with the 39 Clues with different famous authors contributing titles and having tie-in games and such. I got the first few books for my media center and they’ve been regularly circulating but I haven’t yet heard any reviews from students on the books or the game. I’ll ask around.
I’m still slowly making my way through The Name of the Wind. Slowly because I’ve been busy, not because I don’t enjoy it. I actually am liking it very much. It’s pure and carefully thought out storytelling of a high order. I’m about 250 pages in and know I’m in good hands. I’ve basically just got to the point where Kvothe, the main character has gotten to
Hogwarts the University where he apparently going to have a hard time of it but learn what is reputed to be one of the more interesting magical systems in the genre.
I should get a good chunk of it read next week when I go down to help be a nurse for my poor old pop.
What are you reading?