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A Dark Inheritance (Unicorne Files #1)

3.57 of 5 stars 3.57  ·  rating details  ·  267 ratings  ·  61 reviews
From NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Chris d'Lacey comes a brand-new action-adventure series!

When Michael Malone discovers his supernatural ability to alter reality, he is recruited by an organization dedicated to investigating strange and paranormal phenomena. He joins in hopes of finding his father, who mysteriously vanished three years earlier. Michael's first task is
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published May 27th 2014 by Scholastic Press (first published May 5th 2014)
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I could only get about halfway through this. I loved d'Lacey's Last Dragon Chronicles when I was younger, and I still plan on finishing it someday, but this book was so disappointing and I expected a lot more, especially from this author whom I trusted and is supposedly a NYT bestselling author. I have been trying to work on not having high expectations for books by authors I've never read because they almost always fall far below them, but I actually liked d'Lacey's writing. To be honest, this ...more
Vincent Ripley
First posted on

When Michael saves a dog in a clifftop rescue is the opening line to the synopsis on the back of the book. You may be forgiven for thinking that this book sounds unappealing and pass this one by, but you would be sadly mistaken....

This is a cracking book by Chris D'Lacey. It has been about two years since his last published book. He has since moved house and county which has perhaps had some influence on his latest book. This is the first b
Michael Malone is going to school just like any other day except his mom is driving an alternate route to escape a flooded street so he and his sister, Josie won't be late for school. However they are stopped in traffic when Michael knows that a dog is going to commit suicide by jumping off the cliff. Knowing this he runs out of the car and teleports to the top of the cliff where the dog is. He saves the dog but at first doesn't understand or know how he got to the top of the cliff. This is not ...more
Ms. Yingling
Michael and his mother and sister are struggling to get by in the wake of Michael's father's disappearance. When Michael exhibits superhuman powers while rescuing a dog that is about to jump over a windswept cliff, he comes to the attention of several different people. The most eerie are Amadeus Klimt and his French sidekick Chantelle. Also, by a weird coincidence, Freya, a girl from school is said to have been the owner of the dog, Trace, but she isn't. The dog has been following her and is dis ...more
A Dark Inheritance is Book #1 in the UNICORNE Files series. Written by New York Times bestselling author Chris d’Lacey, this book grabbed me from the start with its head-scratching, engaging first few sentences:

“It was the day Mom took the coast road to school. The day I tried to save a suicidal husky. One day before I would begin to wonder if my father was still alive.”

Say what? I needed to keep reading to find out what was going on with Michael Malone – main character and alterer of reality. Y
On his way to school with his mother and younger sister Josie, Michael Malone sees a large dog pacing along the side of a treacherous cliff. Something compels him to leap from the car and save the dog. But that act of compassion brings him to the attention of a secret organization called Unicorne since it reveals certain gifts of which Michael has been unaware. Apparently, he can alter reality and read the specks in the eyes of others in order to determine if they are telling the truth. In excha ...more
D'Lacey's new book is a mishmash of science fiction, fantasy, mystery, and suspense. Michael Malone discovers a crazy ability to alter his own reality on the day that he rescues a dog from a misty seaside cliff. The dog once belonged to a girl who was killed in a bike accident, but it regularly escapes to be near another girl, Freya, for some mysterious reason. And Michael is recruited by a creepy man who seems to know all about the three-years' old disappearance of Michael's father, to be a par ...more
Nina at Death Books and Tea
Review: Michael’s going to school via a non-normal route when he senses the thoughts of a suicidal dog, and somehow manages to stop her going over a cliff. This brings him to the attention of UNICORNE, who say they can tell him what happened to his father, who disappeared. They set him on the task of finding out what the dog was doing on the cliff, and this leads him to a mystery involving a classmate, a dead girl, and his newly discovered powers.
I’ve heard great things about Chris D’Lacey’s oth
This review originally published in Looking For a Good Book. Rated 3.5/5

Science fiction, mystery, paranormal activity, alternate realities, action/adventure. A Dark Inheritance by Chris d'Lacey has a little bit of everything!

Author d'Lacey drops the reader right in to the story without a lot of set-up, which I've always found to be a thrilling way to start a book. We, the reader, get to learn and discover along with the characters. So when teenager Michael is surprised by his own sudden appearan
Mrs. Kenyon
Michael Malone cannot control his urge to save a dog from jumping off a cliff, but after the fact he cannot explain why or how he was able to catch the dog. Especially since none of the police officers were able to get near it. He is told the dog belongs to one of his sick classmates, but when he inquires about the dog he begins to discover the truth. There seems to be a connection between this sick girl and an accident where another girl had been killed. If that is not enough, Michael is approa ...more
Jennifer Boyce
This book has a seriously fascinating premise- young Michael, whose dad disappeared a little while back, can alter reality. Because of his remarkable talent, the same organization his dad worked for (kind of like a secret agent) wants his help to track down his dad and bring him back home. There is also some other mysterious stuff going on in the town with a new girl in school and a "suicidal" dog.

While this book did have the potential to be truly interesting, and an intense read, it fell a litt

A Dark Inheritance is about a young boy, Michael Malone, who discovers that he has the abillity to ‘time jump’ or alter reality. A secret organization, called UNICORNE, recruits him, and he soon discovers that his father had the power to alter reality and worked with UNICORNE, too. Michael’s father vanished 3 years previously. The first time Michael time jumps, he saves the life of a siberian husky named Trace ,who was about to jump off a cliff. As his first excursion for UNICORNE, he must uncov
Jun 18, 2015 Amy rated it 1 of 5 stars
Shelves: arc
ARC/Fantasy: This was a children’s book and I understand I cannot compare it to an adult’s fantasy book. But I did have problems with it.

I really wished the whole UNICORNE was not in the book. It really wasn’t needed for the second half of the story. (I can’t help it. I like the Odd Thomas novels). I just thought it would have made a better children’s story if the hero learned his powers and solved the case by himself. UNICORNE really didn’t do anything. Michael would just report to them. Chant
*Review of ARC*

Buzzwords: Paranormal, Ghosts, Death, Family, Secret Organizations, Mind powers, Multiverse

It was just an ordinary day – until it wasn’t. When Michael and his family are stopped on a bridge on the way to school, and he sees a dog about to jump, he rushes out to save it = and inadvertently alters reality. When a secret organization called UNICORNE approaches him about his new skill, Michael quickly gets sucked into investigating a murder, a haunting, and his father’s disappearance…
Josie Dabinett
I bought this book for two reasons. I adore everything I've ever read by Chris D'lacey, I read the Last Dragon Chronicles when I was at a really low point in my life and they helped me. The second reason was that I read the first page in Waterstones and the main character has a sister called Josie and I've never seen my name in a book I've read before so that was exciting.

I enjoyed the book so much. It's aimed at an age group lower, probably young teens, maybe like 12+, so it was a pretty easy

A Dark Inheritance is the first novel in a new series by Chris d'Lacey, "The UNICORNE Files". This book revolves around Michael, a boy who finds he is able to travel briefly between alternate realities, especially in emergency situations. Michael is contacted by a secret agency, UNICORNE, that studies paranormal and unexplained phenomena. They are very interested in Michael's "abilities", but they also have information that Michael is totally unprepared for: his father, who mysteriously disappea

Jenna Leigh
Oh. My. Good. Lord. This book was... wow. Besides wounding me emotionally, this was the best book I've read in a long. Freaking. Time. Too long. I already idolize Chris D'Lacey, and here is just more proof that this man is a wonderful author. If there were more than 5 stars to give, I totally would give this guy all of the stars. Anyway, just like the Last Dragon Chronicles, there's more dragons, "goth girls" as Chris would put it, and alternate. Freaking. Realities. (a.k.a. my favorite. Thing. ...more
Mel Raschke
This engrossing, Book One of the Unicorne Files treats the reader with intriguing speculations such as time travel, mental telepathy, and ghosts. The thrust of the novel surrounds Michael, who discovers he can alter reality. A secret society UNICORNE, finds him, and we could not figure out how this happened. The person representing this group says he has information about Michael’s father. Michael's father disappeared several years ago. This man will give Michael information, if Michael will hel ...more
Alice Liu
D'Lacey makes quantum physics look easy as he creates a multiverse through the thoughts and actions of Michael Malone, a boy who saves a dog and alters life as we know it. This book is part mystery and part SciFi thriller, but it is also firmly grounded in the every day life of an average boy...well, except for the parts where he alters reality. That's the beauty of A Dark Inheritance -- It is easy to relate to Michael. D'Lacey writes of the every day struggles (i.e. how to talk to a girl), amid ...more
Gem Routledge
I thoroughly enjoyed this book! I admit, I was initially attracted to it because I loved the cover (ha!) and then the lovely people at Chicken House sent me a copy. Michael was a wonderful character, a typical young boy in many ways, yet totally unique in lots of others. The plot was interesting and I raced through it to find out what would happen next! The situation Michael finds himself in is increasingly perilous and he will need all his wits about him... I don't want to say anything to spoil ...more
Quite compelling and a bit unexpected. I was expecting fantasy, but found a paranormal mystery/thriller quite rooted in a realistic setting. The excitement comes from Michael Malone who is discovering quite a bit all at once - that he has the ability to manipulate time, that his father's disappearance may be more complicated than he thought, and that the walls between death and life may be shakier than you'd imagine. Many of the questions and few of the answers seem to flow from a mysterious org ...more
When I first read the blurb on the back of this book I almost didn't read it. Using a Unicorn as a secret espionage agency seem far fetched to say the least. However, the story was an amusing blend of familial life, burgeoning mental powers, ghosts, and hidden surprises. Michael Malone is a teen struggling with the loss of his father and a physical condition he doesn't quite understand. His ability to manipulate time becomes apparent when he stops a dog from jumping off a cliff. This is a great ...more
From the author of The Last Dragon Chronicles comes a new middle grade fantasy series. Chris D'Lacey's Ufiles #1: A Dark Inheritance was published by Scholastic on June 1, 2014.

This new action-adventure series will appeal to a wide range of readers. Chris D'Lacey writes a captivating story of a boy who possesses an extraordinary, but dark talent, who is unexpectedly dragged into a chilling mystery. Don't be dissuaded by the book's use of the word "UNICORNE" as I originally was. I can assure you
jv poore
Three interminable years ago Michael’s father left for a business trip, never to be heard from again. That dilemma, however; is not the strangest quandary in Michael’s life. Since his father’s disappearance, he has become aware of seemingly small, random but wacky occurrences. Being a logical kid, he was able to theorize and dismiss these happenings…..almost. Now, the incidents happen all too often, and there is truly no explanation. Assuming that the oddities and his father’s vanishing are rela ...more
Jessica | Bookish Serendipity
This review originally appeared at . Check out the blog for more fun MG and YA reviews.

Wow. That was quite simply, awesome. This was my first Chris D'Lacey book and I really want to read his dragon series now! It isn't something I would have picked up normally because I am not huge on paranormal books but I really enjoyed this one for some reason.

This book is actually quite creepy for MG. There's a dead girl who probably isn't on Michael's side, a ruthless secret org
When Michael Malone miraculously manages to save a dog's life things in his life take an unexpected turn. He discovers that he can alter reality and joins the mysterious agency UNICORNE (a secret organization that is dedicated to investigating strange and paranormal phenomena). As Michael learns more about his powers more and more questions arise about UNICORNE. What does UNICORNE have to do with his father's mysterious disappearance and what is their real purpose?

I personally found this book t
Kind of a mixture of sci-fi and paranormal. Fast-paced and kept me turning the pages; entertaining writing. Intrigued by the mysteries. Liked that it was set in a somewhat contemporary world with elements of physics and ghosts; easier to relate to. On the negative side, there are a lot of plot points and mysteries which get somewhat muddled, and the characters' ages were confusing to me. A mixture of teen feelings and childish actions/situations.
Brittany Perry
So original. it has taken me forever to start on it. I think this was because I was a huge fan of the Pennykettle dragons and I was left a bit disappointed at the end the series. This novel reminded me o the richness of Mr.D'Lacey's writing style, and simplistic and clear descriptions. It was a thrilling read that kept me up for hours after I should have been in bed. It was a very smart type of novel. It was so different from what I had expected.
For this month, I read A Dark Inheritance by Chris D'Lacey. The genre of the book is story. The book is about a boy named Michael who tries to find his dad that mysteriously disappeared 3 years earlier. Michael also tries to solve a file on a dog with the help of an organization called UNICORNE. I rated this book five stars because it was full of mystery and detective work. It also had a lot of science fiction which I really enjoy.
- a boy with special powers is recruited by a secret organization to help investigate paranormal activities
- he saves a dog and his leads to a chain of improbable and disconnected events
- mix of science fiction, mystery, fantasy, and adventure
- author tries too hard to make a novel that fits too many genres
- looks like the first in a series of books
- reading level: gr.6
- interest level: gr. 6-9
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He was born in Valetta, Malta, but as a child moved first to Leicester and then to Bolton. After gaining a degree in biology from the University of York, he returned to Leicester and got a job at the University of Leicester in their Pre-Clinical Sciences department.
Originally his writing was confined to songs and he didn't turn to fiction until he was 32. His first piece of work was a 250,000 word
More about Chris d'Lacey...

Other Books in the Series

Unicorne Files (2 books)
  • Alexander's Army (The Unicorne Files)
The Fire Within (The Last Dragon Chronicles, #1) Icefire (The Last Dragon Chronicles, #2) Fire Star (The Last Dragon Chronicles, #3) The Fire Eternal (The Last Dragon Chronicles, #4) Dark Fire (The Last Dragon Chronicles, #5)

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