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Monday, March 27
Dragonwatch (Blog Tour and Review)
"A Fablehaven Adventure"!? I mean really, you could just stop now and know that you need to get yourself a copy of this book. The Fablehaven books are Brandon Mull's first series and honestly, one of my favorites. This sequel series, Dragonwatch, is just about the most exciting news ever. And so we're celebrating with a blog tour all over the interwebs all month long! So here's my review of this newest foray into the Fablehaven universe...
My rating: ★★★★½
Publisher: Shadow Mountain
Date of publication: March 14, 2017
Age: Grades 4 and up
Format: ARC provided by publisher
Themes: dragons, magic, mythical creatures, uprisings, sibling relationships
"In the hidden dragon sanctuary of Wyrmroost, Celebrant the Just, King of the Dragons, plots his revenge. He has long seen the sanctuaries as prisons, and he wants nothing more than to overthrow his captors and return the world to the Age of Dragons, when he and his kind ruled and reigned without borders. The time has come to break free and reclaim his power.
"No one person is capable of stopping Celebrant and his dragon horde. It will take the ancient order of Dragonwatch to gather again if there is any chance of saving the world from destruction. In ancient times, Dragonwatch was a group of wizards, enchantresses, dragon slayers, and others who originally confined the majority of dragons into sanctuaries. But nearly all of the original Dragonwatch members are gone, and so the wizard Agad reaches out to Grandpa Sorenson for help.
"As Kendra and Seth confront this new danger, they must draw upon all their skills, talents, and knowledge as only they have the ability to function together as a powerful dragon tamer. Together they must battle against forces with superior supernatural powers and breathtaking magical abilities.
"How will the epic dragon showdown end? Will dragons overthrow humans and change the world as we know it?"
Oh, Kendra and Seth, you are exactly as I remembered you. Despite the last book of the Fablehaven series being released seven years ago (seven years??? holy cow), this continued where that story left off with hardly a hop, skip, or jump. It was seamless. In fact, that may be my only (small, very small) criticism. A lot of the character development and histories are dependent on the fact that you have read Fablehaven. That is not to say that this isn't a fantastic story by itself, but that the characters and setting are somewhat flat unless you've read the other books. I had trouble remembering where Kendra and Seth's parents were, who many of their old friends were, and many other small details in their history.
By depending on Fablehaven to provide the character depth, however, Mull is allowed to jump into the action of the series right away. Which he does. This new plot is very exciting and a definite success when it comes to the dreaded realm of "sequels." It doesn't feel like it's trying to rewrite what happened in Fablehaven, nor does to fall flat in relation to it; the new problem that has arisen with the dragons feels justified. The characters (while they do have quite the history in the other books) do still get the chance to grow and develop some more in this one. New characters are introduced and easy to love. And man, it's all so exciting. Hint: the cover gives one scene particular justice. It's just that epic.
In the end, it's pretty easy for me to recommend this book. Mull's writing is to the point and very much action-driven; basically, kids will love it. Kids who loved the Fablehaven books will love it even more. This is, no question, a must have. And if you haven't read the Fablehaven books and are hesitant to read this? Easy, just read the Fablehaven books because they're freakin' amazing, too, okay??
Find it at your library or on Amazon