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Darcy Pennington hates her life. She is an insufferably average teenager with no true friends, crushing social anxiety, and an indescribable sense of not fitting in anywhere. When her parents force her to attend Cedar Cove Family Camp the summer before her eighth-grade year, Darcy once again finds herself on the outside of an established social circle.

But the camp holds secrets, and when Darcy begins to have strange experiences, she comes to believe she’s either losing her mind or on the brink of a discovery that could give her life purpose.

An unwitting tumble through a magical gateway lands her in a new world called Alitheia, and Darcy must convince five other teenagers at the camp to not only befriend her but follow her on a journey beyond their world and their wildest dreams to save Alitheia from an ancient, shadowy foe.

287 pages, Kindle Edition

First published January 1, 2009

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About the author

K.B. Hoyle

14 books192 followers
K. B. Hoyle is a multiple award-winning Young Adult author, a public speaker, and a creative writing instructor.

She was a panel speaker at the 2013 Sydney Writer's Festival in Sydney, Australia, and a featured speaker at the Great American Book Festival in 2017. Her books receive high acclaim from readers and reviewers worldwide.

In between writing books and articles and planning events, she stays busy at her home in Alabama with her husband and their four sons, but she loves hearing from her readers! You can reach her personally at author@kbhoyle.com.

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 99 reviews
Profile Image for Barnabas Piper.
Author 11 books894 followers
March 1, 2019
Read this with my daughters and all three of us loved it. It’s YA fiction of the best sort: written smartly and relatably with great characters who have real struggles and overcome great challenges. The story moves fast and is compelling. The world-building is imaginative and fun and picturesque. It is magical and fantastical but also grounded and human. I am excited to read the next couple in the series.
Profile Image for Glass.
643 reviews4 followers
April 1, 2012

For starters, thank you, lovely readers, for visiting my blog and taking your time to read today's post which is dedicated to the new novel, The Six by KB Hoyle, coming out on April 5th. I was lucky to be part of The Six Blog Tour organised by The Writer's Coffee Shop.

I'm guessing that first you'd like to know what The Six is about. Well, here's summary:

Darcy Pennington hates her life. She is an insufferably average teenager with no real friends, crushing social anxiety, and an indescribable sense of not fitting in anywhere. A change in her dad’s job forces her to attend Cedar Cove Family Camp the summer before her eighth-grade year, and Darcy once again finds herself on the outside of a social circle of teenagers, with her only advocate being an awkward girl named Samantha Palm. The only problem is, Darcy has no desire to be friends with her, but as the hostility from the other teenagers increases, she decides to return the friendship.
When Darcy begins to experience strange magical occurrences, she comes to believe she’s either losing her mind or on the brink of a discovery that could give her purpose in life. After unwittingly stumbling through a magical gateway to a new world called Alitheia, she convinces Sam and the other four teenagers to travel there with her, and despite their earlier hostilities toward her, they eventually concede leadership of their small group to Darcy. Once there, they learn the “arrival of the Six” was prophesied hundreds of years before, and that they must expel an ancient evil from the land. In the end their lives, and the fate of Alitheia, will hinge upon Darcy. Will she have what it takes to fulfill her mysterious purpose? Or will she fall prey to a deadly foe?

It's obvious that this is a book for younger readers - main characters are 13 and 14 years old, but I assure you - even older readers will enjoy it. Think of Harry Potter! Or yourself as a child!
I remember that I liked "to explore" small woods behind house where I used to live with my younger sister. My mother dreaded those "expeditions" - more than often we used to come back with scars, bruises, torn clothes and tangled hair full of leaves, bugs and who know what else. Trophies were the best part. We believed that they were gifts from "wood's people". Oh, yeah! You heard me right! I was totally crazy. We searched for gnomes, leprechauns, wizards, ghosts, unicorns, Liliputians, faeries, Peter Pan, Excalibur, Lady of the Lake and "souls of the trees". But those are the happiest memories of my childhood. When you get older, you start to forget lots of things - I have to admit I forgot. But than I took this book in my hands and it all came back. I couldn't stop smiling and I kept imagining all the characters in the novel as my friends and myself.
Thing is The Six is the story made out of this kind of memories - KB Hoyle said it herself:

"I was inspired to write The Gateway Chronicles by my childhood camp experiences. The Six, as the first in the series, sprang out of this desire to translate my camp memories into a fantasy story for teenagers that combines the classic magical transportation to another world with modern teenage lingo and realism. In doing this, I've been able to create something new out of something old, and not only pay homage to my favorite childhood haunt, but also to my favorite genre of literature. The Six is the beginning of a larger story that young people can grow along with and love!"

Profile Image for Adam Shields.
1,658 reviews87 followers
March 16, 2022

Summary: Young Adult fantasy series that is well-plotted, character-driven, and relatable. 

I first read the Gateway Chronicles series about four years ago. That is long enough ago that I have forgotten a lot of the specific plot details and twists, but I still remember the broad strokes. As I re-read the series, it felt like a sweet spot of enjoying some of the story's nuances that I might have missed on a first read, but also still regularly be surprised at plot twists that I had forgotten.

Young adult fantasy is comfort reading for me. Earlier this year, I read the first three books of the Harry Potter series aloud to my kids. But that was as far as I felt comfortable reading based on their ages and response to scary parts. But that did not fully satiate my need for story. Part of what I love about young adult fantasy is its focus on the hero. Heroes have a clear purpose and goal. They are willing to sacrifice themselves for the good of a person or a group of people. There is beauty in the understanding of right and wrong. Adult fantasy often feels the need to nuance the idea of right and wrong so that everyone is so tainted that it can be hard to see any sense of goodness (similar to many modern spy stories.) I am not looking for wooden stories that have no development or struggle, just action, but I am looking for inspiration to press into the more challenging aspects of life because there is a sense of purpose.

Darcy Pennington feels detached from life. She is 13, and her family makes her go to a family camp. She wants to be popular and liked, but not by the two kids who will be there that she knows from her middle school, Samantha and Lewis. Sam and Lewis, along with three others, have been at the camp for years. They have a strong relationship, and Darcy feels both on the outside and a bit claustrophobic from the warm acceptance that Sam has for her. Those relational dynamics change when Darcy stumbles on a gateway into another world and has to bring the rest of the group back to the world to complete a prophecy. And that starts the series of six books. Each book details the group as they start the week of camp by magically entering the fantasy world. And once inside that world, they live for a year, grow and change and then return to the world of the camp at the same point in time. For six years, they essentially live two years, and by the end, their bodies are physically 18/19, but they have the life experience of 22/23.

Much of the books' plot concerns their relationship to the significant prophecy and other "oracles." Darcy especially is resistant to her role at the start, and her resistance to that role (a natural resistance that makes a lot of sense) is the driving force for the conflicts of the first three books. As she shifts to a growing acceptance of her role and what that role means in the later books, the conflict of the books shifts subtlety from an internal conflict of resistance to the prophecy to an external resistance of how her role impacts others. While Darcy is the main character, the development of all of the series' characters is done well. In addition to the six characters from Earth, there are also a variety of human and non-human characters that are integral to the story. And plenty of notable characters that die along the way. A great evil has to be opposed, and the opposition to evil has an actual cost.

I gave my three early teen nieces a copy of the first book of the series for Christmas. I do not think this is a series only for girls, but the main character is female, and I like to see strong female leads (and my only nephew is a bit too young, I think.) The first three books of the series are on audio. I listened to the first book of the series on audiobook but then shifted back to print. I can read young adult novels so much faster than listening to them. I re-read all six books in less than two weeks.

More than anything else, the series reminds me that I need to keep seeking out good fiction. Fiction is a reminder of our humanity. Characters make decisions we do not like, but we can understand. They lie, hide, love, and give in natural ways (if well written.) Fiction helps us see the world around us, especially fantasy and young adult fiction that is a bit abstracted from our everyday world.

Previous Reviews: The Six, The Oracle, The White Thread, The Enchanted, The Scroll, The Bone Whistle

Short Review: Thirteen year old Darcy Pennington doesn’t have any friends. Her real love in life is horses. For the past several years she has gone to a summer camp dedicated to riding horses. But this year, both because of financial constraints and to be together as a family, her family has decided to go on vacation together, to a family camp. Darcy is dreading it. She is dreading it in part because two other kids from her neighborhood that she knows, but does not really like will be there as well.

Darcy begins to like the camp despite herself. The area is beautiful and the kids are fairly friendly, although as an introvert, Darcy does have a problem finding space to just be alone. As she gets acquainted with the space and the people, there is a sense of magic, and not just in the figurative sense.

I do not want to give away too many details of the story, but this is a young adult fantasy that has some parallels to CS Lewis’ Narnia books. Eventually another world is involved, and a prophesy, and gifts and talents, and an evil ruler. Genre writing is difficult, good genre book follow enough conventions to be part of the genre without being reduced to conventions. Good books often drop subtle hints and references to earlier books that helped to define or illustrate those conventions. Bad genre books blindly follow the conventions without adding anything new to the conversations within the genre. One of the things that some people love about genre writing is the ability to ‘check out’ as you are reading because the book become so conventional that no real thought is required.

The Six is aware of the young adult fantasy conventions and definitely pays tribute to Lewis and Tolkien and other masters without being mindless or boring. Characters make mistakes and have limited perceptions of where those mistakes are going to lead. There is real character development, although this is the first of a series so there is plenty of room for more character and story development.

The Six was a quick read for me. I read it in basically two sittings in two days. I was engaged and entertained and frustrated with bad decisions as I was supposed to be. And I enjoyed the result and I am anticipating picking up the rest of the series.

My slightly longer review is on my blog at http://bookwi.se/the-six/
Profile Image for Maya Joelle.
Author 1 book88 followers
May 14, 2022
I wish more people knew about this series, because it's one of the better Christian fantasies I've read, and I think a lot of people who enjoy Narnia would like it. Even people who've found more obscure titles like Nadine Brandes or Bryan Davis never seem to know about this one.

This book isn't one of my favorites based on its writing, but I do really enjoy reading it, mainly because a) it's set at the camp I've grown up going to and b) it's the setup for one of my favorite series of all time. I find that first books are often not the best, but that's all right, because this series definitely improves.

What I don't like: the writing style (it's just a bit simplistic and repetitive). The way the teens treat each other. The technology (I actually don't like this in any of the books; the author rewrote them and added cell phones/social media a few years after the initial publication, but it's quite awkwardly incorporated). Darcy's character (but, I mean, character development *is* a part of this book).

What I do like: Tellius (he's ADORABLE here). The world. The prophecies.

Note: this book *is* more middle grade, reading level- and content-wise, but I recommend it for older readers because the later books significantly increase in mature content.

~ content: violence, dark magic (portrayed as evil). recommended for ages 12+ || later books include more mature themes, more intense violence, and mild sexual content including implied off-page sex between married characters ~
Profile Image for Kathie (katmom).
689 reviews46 followers
May 15, 2012
I love this book, this series.

Darcy is annoying as heck when THE SIX starts out, much like most 13 year olds. I've recently HAD a 13 y/o and K.B. Hoyle GETS them. She does grow and learn, just like a real teen, throughout the book, and that continues throughout the series.

I loved the new world this author has created. It's a mix of Narnia, HP and LotR.

I've discovered a love for narks. Yahto Veli is my new hero.

Yes, I read this for work, but couldn't put it down.

And I'm ever so grateful that there will be SIX of these! Book #2, THE ORACLE will be out in June and #3, THE WHITE THREAD in the fall...with #4, THE ENCHANTED out in the new year.

I really need them all NOW!
Profile Image for Penny Wood.
67 reviews25 followers
May 15, 2020
Well that was....... disappointing.

I was really excited to start this book. I love books with this setup, and it just had just so. much. potential. The characters seem to have such a nice range of personalities (I was really excited to read about Lewis) and the premise was just so awesome.

What went wrong?

I hold middle grade books to a high standard. I expect them to be just as fleshed out, detailed, and complicated as their YA and adult counterparts. (If you think these middle grade books don't exist, you haven't read the right ones!) I want to see the passion and the care and the love and the intimacy the author has with their characters dripping from the page.

I just felt as though no one cared about these characters. There was no passion. No uniqueness. No chemistry.

The characters and their reactions felt flat. Everything just felt.....off. I agree with Darcy for once in saying that Amelia was annoying. Sam was nice, but bland. Lewis hardly existed, and when he did, he was aggravating. Perry was dull and one dimensional. Dean seemed okay, but we hardly got any page time with him. The team of the Six didn't work well together or feel like a team. Their interactions made me feel uncomfortable. There was no chemistry. They mostly just hated on Darcy, which gave way to her loads of self pity and caused her to feel alienated from the group, causing more awkward character interactions. I'm not sure if there was one pleasant "Team" moment with these. No banter, no witty battles, no jokes.

The plot feels frustratingly long and like we're not getting anywhere. And I could predict the plot too! (Which is saying a lot, because I'm terrible at predicting plot twists.) I knew that (SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS SKIP TO THE NEXT PARAGRAPH) Lykos was evil (which I found really disappointing. WHY DO WOLVES ALWAYS HAVE TO BE EVIL I LOVE WOLVES). I just.....idk. Not enough felt like it happened for the first book. I would be more forgiving towards this if the characters had shone. But they didn't :(((


There's a reason I gave this book 3 stars. Because this book did have a few things that made it possible to read through.

That number one thing being Tellius.

Tellius is my BOI. My SON. Good night, I love him so much. He's so sad and bratty and hot tempered and spoiled and stiff and such a bean, I don't know how someone COULDN'T love him. I loved him with all my heart and I wished he had more page time. He was the reason I wanted to keep reading.

Rubidus and Colin were also fun to read about. I hope that they get expanded roles in the books to come. Their characters shone.

And the worldbuilding is cool! I loved the narks. And the animals. And the scenery and all the species of Alithea.

Having the talents is really cool (but it does have some strains of Harry Potter-esque magic, so if you are sensitive about that, keep that in mind.) And I liked the idea of being able to communicate with the animals.

But it just wasn't enough to impress me or leave me happy after putting the book down.

I really hate leaving reviews on books that I wasn't crazy about.....I always feel so mean :(((( And it made me sad to have to say I didn't like this book very much.

Thanks for reading my review!
Profile Image for Melissa Perret.
227 reviews1 follower
July 31, 2019
Fantastic, and I hear the rest of the series is even better! Looking forward to all the rest...
Profile Image for Bonnie.
189 reviews
March 20, 2012
Review originally posted on Words at Home blog March 20, 2012: http://www.wordsathome.ca/2012/03/the...

I didn’t know what to expect when I started reading The Six. I have seen it compared to (http://www.girl-who-reads.com/2011/02...) Narnia and Harry Potter and this is where my apprehension set in. I haven’t read Narnia since I was about ten and I’ve never read Harry Potter so I was afraid that some of the magic would be lost on me. I also wasn’t sure how invested I would become in a group of thirteen year olds and their adventures but I was pleasantly surprised. The Six caught my attention right away with Darcy and her young teen angst and later by Hoyle’s excellent depiction of an alternate world called Alitheia.

The Six is full of magic and action which bridge the gap between young adult and adult readers. Once Darcy and her friends step into Alitheia it is nonstop action and adventure. I have to admit that this novel was my first encounter with many of the magical creates that Hoyle talks about. Once we stepped into Alitheia it took me a few pages to switch gears and catch up on the lingo but I got there eventually. It was a bit of an abrupt transition and I would have liked to see a little more world building and introduction to these new types of creatures so that I didn’t spend any time feeling lost. But like it said it didn’t take long to acclimate to Alitheia and once I did the magic began – literally and figuratively!

Not only is this an exciting fantasy-adventure novel but it is full of strong and characters and relationships. I really enjoyed the characters that Hoyle crafted from Darcy and her initial sullen and woe-is-me me attitude, to Sam and her over exuberance, to Perry and his tough guy persona. These kids felt really authentic, from their demeanors, to their dialogue and their attitudes towards each other. They were believable and this is a big part of what drew me into this novel. It didn’t matter that this was a younger crowd than I usually read about; a well-depicted character is a well-depicted character! I also loved to see the growth in Darcy’s character. Hoyle was able to incorporate themes like friendship, loyalty and forgiveness that appeal to any audience, especially the younger adult crowd. These relationships added another layer to the story making it more than just a fantasy novel.

The Six is an exciting, action filled and magical novel that will appeal to both young and not so young readers! There is enough meat to the story to appeal to adults who are fans of YA but it is also a clean enough story to be appropriate and relatable to younger teens so it really is the best of both worlds. I recommend this book to anyone who loves the magic and adventure of the Chronicles of Narnia and is looking to get lost in another world for a few hours!

I received an eARC of this book from the publisher (TWCS) in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Anika Claire.
Author 3 books44 followers
May 15, 2012
Review originally posted on The Oaken Bookcase, May 15, 2012.

Have you ever had a feeling when you visited a natural location that there was something magical about the area? Five children, now teenagers, have been having that same feeling each summer when their families have come to Cedar Cove to camp . This year, Darcy and her family have joined the other families, and that magical feeling is about to lead the six teenagers into another world – Aletheria.

I loved reading about the world of Aletheria and the creatures in it! The story is a bit The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, a bit Harry Potter – it’s just the sort of thing I loved to read when I was middle-grade-aged.

The story drew me in from the first chapter, mainly owing to the realistic portrayal of the characters. Darcy and her family sound just like a real family going on holiday where the teenager doesn’t want to be there and the little brother is super-annoyingly-excited.

Hoyle has perfected Darcy’s “no-one understands me so I’ll just go sulk over in this corner and avoid everyone” behavior, but unfortunately this leads to an odd outcome in the story - I couldn’t help feeling that because Darcy was so busy avoiding everyone, the most interesting parts of the story happened to other people rather than her. The whole story is told from Darcy’s point of view, which is fine in that we get to know her very well, but it means that she doesn’t hear what the other characters are up to most of the time.

That aside, this is one of the best middle-grade stories I’ve read in a while. Each chapter led into the next and the action parts were very exciting. This was a fantastic introduction to the world of Aletheria, but as with many debut novels in series, I think the best is yet to come. I can’t wait to get stuck into the second in the series, The Oracle. It’s due for release in June and currently available on Netgalley.
11 reviews3 followers
June 28, 2012
From about the very first page of this book, I was completely captivated and couldn't stop reading till the end. Darcy, the main character is thirteen when the story begins, and at first I both loved her and was frustrated with her. She's shy and socially uncomfortable, and yet, she's embarrassed to be hanging around Samantha an overweight neightbor girl of the same age. I was shy and terrified in social situations at that age and beyond, and yet, I have a disability and remember too well how all the kids in school were afraid or embarrassed to hang with me. But Darcy pulls at your heartstrings and you can't help loving her.

She and five other kids of her age, meet at a family summer camp and make their way through a mysterious gateway into another world, where they find their arrival has been prophesied many hundreds of years before. Their arrival begins the process of overthrowing the evil ruler to restore the land to the rightful king.

I fell in love with the people and characters we meet in this new land, particularly the Narks, a being that has two distinct selves and personalities, the Day Nark and the Night Nark, favorite among them is Yahto Veli.

This is a young adult book, but it takes you an an adventure where any adult would want to go, any adult would feel compelled to go. I haven't felt this drawn into a book series since maybe Harry Potter, and like that series, The Six and it's sequel live on in my mind and heart. I think about the characters and wonder what will happen to them next.

There will be six books in this series, each book another year, another meeting at camp and trip through the gateway. And oh how I wish I could go too!
Profile Image for Katt Smith.
118 reviews3 followers
May 19, 2019
Man, when I was 13 I would have gone wild for a story like this - I used to daydream about this kind of thing happening to me at camp, making up stories and scenarios and all kind of magic. I even went through a period where I wrote letters from “another world” to myself and a friend, begging for our help to come and defeat some sort of evil.
At 23, this narrative still thrills.

Despite the exposition at the beginning being a tad clunky at times, the characters are really great - they have real struggles and feel true to life because of them. Darcy and her bad decision making does grate sometimes - in a Harry Potter in the Order of the Phoenix kind of way - mostly because I know I would’ve been a lot like her at that age and seeing those ugly tendencies reflected back at you is never fun. But she grows - they all do. And I’m anxious to read the rest of the series and see where they all grow from here. There are a lot of unanswered questions and things I want to see more of (Darcy hangin our w her horse for instance). I like the world and I’m ready to be back.

Big thanks to my friend for loaning me the books 😉.
Profile Image for Bethany.
115 reviews
January 13, 2019
I’d give this three stars for my personal read of it, but 4 stars for how much I would’ve loved it when I was its readers’ target age. :)
Profile Image for Molly Sawyer.
82 reviews1 follower
January 18, 2020
Read this with my middle schoolers. Really great page turner in the vein of the Narnia series. On to the next in the series!
Profile Image for gabbi.
36 reviews2 followers
August 13, 2022
Profile Image for Shannon.
565 reviews26 followers
September 2, 2021
K. B. Hoyle has some serious writing chops--and insight chops, if those are a thing.

Her prose style is excellent, a pleasure to read. Despite the book being self-published, which can be used to spackle over all sorts of writing sins, I found the format and the writing itself to be excellent, with only two or three typos in the whole book.

She evoked certain moods or feelings, things that I have experienced deeply but was not attentive to at the time, but which I recognized at once. I am sure that these emotional atmospheres are common to more people than just Hoyle and me, but I see them so seldom in books that her tackling of them feels brand new.

For example: you are an imaginative loner at a summer camp or other unfamiliar place. All you want to do is get away from the other people and be by yourself because you have this feeling that this place has something to offer, something almost magical, that no one else can sense--and that is perhaps waiting down every less-traveled hiking trail or in every unclaimed corner. You feel like you just keep barely missing it. HAVE YOU EVER FELT THAT WAY? I did, at every summer camp I ever attended, and she NAILS that feeling in this book.

Of course, the excellent premise of her book is that this is a summer camp which actually is skirting a magical parallel realm (just what I always suspected!). "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio..."

Another example of "insight chops" which I distinctly appreciated was the main character Darcy's arc. Darcy is a loner who feels (in part because she is a loner) that there are things about her, special things, that no one else can (or cares to) understand. At some level, she longs for relationship, but at another level, she holds herself apart. It's a mixture of social anxiety and pride that is a huge problem for introverted, intelligent teenage girls, if I may speak from experience as 1) teaching this kind of kid a lot and 2) being one of them at one point. However, in books, though the introverted and misunderstood teenager is a frequent character, she is almost always primarily the victim. The negative, prideful aspects of these tendencies are rarely addressed, and if they are, the solution is the horrible and deceptive band-aid that she just needs to realize, even more, how SPECIAL she actually is. Hoyle's book masterfully shows that such a character can be the perpetrator as well as the victim, in ways that are obvious to the reader even while being pretty understandable from Darcy's perspective. The exploration of this theme was my favorite part of the book.

Why three stars? Mainly because this novel, as far as pure plot goes, is mainly setup for a larger series with a big central conflict and obvious character developments still to come. I like the world, and I can tell the battle will be epic, but this book is setup. It's the characters getting to know each other and being taught many school-style lessons preparing them for what will happen in future books. It's really well-written setup! But it's setup.

I am interested in that central conflict, and I like that this is a cool portal fantasy world with a theme often overlooked but very well-developed here. Even if I don't finish the series now, I will recommend it to those who want good, clean reads with morals deeper than the tired, tired "Believe in yourself!" And I may keep it in my back pocket in case one of my own girls turns out to go through an intelligent-introverted-no-one-understands-me teenage phase herself.
Profile Image for MGGMMGGM.
291 reviews9 followers
June 13, 2012
The Six. I was initially intrigued by the novel the moment I saw it in Netgalley and immediately requested it but for unknown reasons, I kept on passing through it in my reader and it became unnoticed for a couple of weeks. A couple of days ago, I started reading The Six and boy was I disappointed! Well, not in the way that you are probably thinking. I was very disappointed with myself for not reading the novel the moment I got it in my reader.

The Six is a story of Darcy and 5 of her friends who were prophesied to help Alitheia win against the baddies in their land. The Six has a Narnia vibe to it I must admit – it is similar when it comes to the parallel world concept, time stopping events and magical creatures but The Six has it’s own flavor to it. What I loved most about The Six was how the author created a world so enchanting and magical it was very entertaining to read and being a fan of Tolkien’s LOTR trilogy – The Six became memorable in my bookshelf.

Now for the characters, this is most likely the ever voiced opinion with regards to this novel – Darcy is an immature and selfish kid and I am not liking her one single bit. Actually that was also the main pull for me which is why I became so interested in the first few pages. so it’s win win. Darcy is negative from the start of the novel and I kept on figuring what her deal was and why she was like that. She also came of as a brat for me so I wasn’t really into her character although I would point out that as the story progress, her character matures a little but still not there. Her companions were also fun to follow. Each kid had their own personality and all 5 are very distinguishable from each other so you won’t have any issues following the story line. The magical creatures are also to look forward to. It would have been nice to learn a little more about these creatures though. Favorites would be Yahto Veli and Voitto Vesa, the narks (I can’t remember if I got that right, it’s narks right?). One person with two personality – literally. Narks has day and night counterparts. Their appearance and personalities changes as the time pass so imagine my confusion with their names as first. It’s Yahto and Veli (morning and night nark or the other way around, LOL) as the author explained in the story but to avoid confusion they use Yahto Veli or Vitto Vesa, whoever the nark is but still, it can get very confusing. In addition before I forgot, each kid also has a animal companion and forgive me, I forgot their names but as far as I can remember there’s a badger, lion, fox, bird (forgot what tye of bird) and a horse annnnnnnnnnd I’m forgetting one. Geez, see with the intricate world created by Hoyle, one tends to get lost with it in a fun way.

Storytelling was superb. Hoyle has a gift for writing, it was very flawless and entertaining. I can really get a vibe and see the story and the commotion, feel the emotions, the development. It has a balanced mix of fantasy and adventure with a little bonus of drama on the side. The ending was very intriguing and you’ll know immediately that it isn’t a stand alone book.

I got sucked in the story, got stucked in it and now I am wanting more. The Six is very recommended especially for people who enjoy fantasy and action. It is a mix of Narnia with a little Tolkien and a dash of Potter.
Profile Image for Shaheen.
636 reviews71 followers
April 24, 2012
I really have no idea how I will approach this review, but having re-read the synopsis above I have realised that it fails to capture much of The Six. The story is pretty much as the blurb describes: thirteen year old awkward and socially inept girl finds out she needs needs to save the magical world of Alitheia with her friends.

Darcy Pennington isn't just awkward - she is a self-centred individual who sincerely believes that the other kids at the camp are beneath her. She's much too good to be friends with her neighbour Samantha, who is nothing but nice to her. I don't think I can explain how Darcy feels better than Darcy herself, so here it is:

Samantha Palm. Blond, blue-eyed … and overweight. She'd lived at the end of their street before Darcy could remember, and every summer she tried to make friends with Darcy, to no avail. Darcy liked to think that her avoidance of Sam had nothing to do with the girl's weight, but if she was truly honest with herself, she knew that deep down she did not want to be friends with the fat girl at school. I have a hard enough time making friends at school without hanging out with someone like Samantha Palm, she'd argued to herself more than once.

And what, exactly, is it that makes Darcy so charming that people are falling over themselves to be friends with her? Actually, no one at the camp wants anything to do with her - even as Darcy is avoiding them because she doesn't like them, the OTHER kids are debating whether to hang out with her or not (the general consensus is NO), with Samantha ironically being Darcy's only advocate. In fact, in the Alitheian prophesy, Darcy is referred to as the leader of the group, but from what I see, the true leader is Samantha, who stands up to all of them and continues to be friends with Darcy no matter how meanly Darcy acts. I think the author has made a huge mistake by making the protagonist so unlikeable and unrelatable - I know thirteen year olds can't be expected to be mature and are flawed, but Darcy's character is a step too far!

I feel I would have enjoyed the book much more if it had been told by ANY of the other five kids that make up THE SIX. I really liked Samantha and I want to get to know Perry better (he does the 'arrogant and mysterious hot guy' so well!). The general plot line of the book resembles The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe for my liking: Darcy finds Alitheia by herself and must convince the other five that it exist and to accompany her back, while in Alitheia, she learns that the people have been waiting for "three women and three men" to save them from unspeakable horrors, and no matter how much time the six spend in Alitheia they return to this world to find that no time has passed.

I think I didn't enjoy The Six for a variety of reasons, the first and foremost being I am obviously not the demographic it is written for. I may have enjoyed it a lot more as a teenager, being able to relate to Darcy's 'no one understands me' phase and her family troubles, but all I saw was a teenager who never gave those around her a chance. Perhaps younger readers will enjoy this book more than me.
Profile Image for Megan.
230 reviews58 followers
April 3, 2012
When I received this book to read, I really had no idea what to expect. I actually had a little trouble getting into the story and I would keep starting and stopping to read something else. But finally, I sat down and told myself I had to read this book, and it took me a few chapters but I finally got hooked!
I found the book started off a little slow, giving too much information that I found didn’t really need to be done. But once I got past all that it seemed like the story really got started. I loved how the author was able to really bring the characters to life, even though the characters were a little younger then I am use to reading about (they were only 13) I was still able to relate to them because obviously I was that age once not too long ago. It was great seeing how Darcy went from being the outcast to being a leader; during the book she did seem very immature at times, but by the end of the book you could see that her maturity level had increased and she had realized a lot about herself as well as her new friends.
This book reminded me of a cross between The Chronicles of Narnia and Lord of the Rings. It was way more fantasy centered then I am use to because I generally read paranormal books. But by the end of The Six I was totally hooked, and although I could have done without Perry (he was a little too arrogant considering he was only 13) I cant wait for the next book in the series because I hope it focuses a little more on Sam and Dean because they were my favorite characters in the book even though they were both more in the background then anything.
Overall I thought the book was very well written and I was pleasantly surprised at how much I liked the book considering my rocky start and will continue to read the series!

Profile Image for Stephanie.
136 reviews9 followers
June 12, 2012
middle school & up
Gateway Chronicles #1

Darcy is reluctantly on the way to the first ever family summer vacation. When she gets there she is immediately greeted by the always cheerful and bubbly Samantha. Sam is really nice but Darcy is an extreme introvert. In order to get some time alone, Darcy lies to Sam. This causes the other teens at the camp to mistrust her. During a hike, Darcy finds herself in another world called Alitheia. The people she meets are friendly and want her to come back with the other five teenagers. Thanks to Sam's unwavering loyalty she manages to convince the others to return with her. In Alitheia, they learn that they are the fulfillment of a prophecy that will lead to Alitheia's liberation from the Tsellodrin.

I enjoyed this book, it has some pretty obvious parallels to Narnia and a few things in common with Harry Potter. I think it has potential on its own though. In the beginning, I really identified with Darcy. I too am an introvert and Sam would probably drive me crazy. Too huggy and chatty. Towards the middle, I really just wanted to slap Darcy. I don't want to say too much because of spoilers but her attitude --"oh, nobody understands me, I'm so mistreated, why doesn't everybody just realize I'm the most fabulous." I don't think it is too much of a spoiler to say she gets over it. Eventually.
The story is paced very well when you consider nothing too major actually happens. The eponymous Six spend most of their time learning about their place in the prophecy. Which is one of those Harry Potter parallels.

Verdict: recommended. Great for the middle school fantasy crowd.

Profile Image for Marian Jacobs.
Author 1 book14 followers
July 24, 2018
I read K.B. Hoyle’s The Six (The Gateway Chronicles) years ago. It’s been so long, in fact, that I was actually surprised by some of the twists and turns this time around. With the rerelease, new edits, and cover, I just had to delve back into the world of Alitheia again!

If this is the first time you’ve heard of this series, think The Chronicles of Narnia meets The Maze Runner. It’s a portal fantasy much like Narnia yet with a darker, zombie-esque antagonistic force that will keep the cast of characters on their toes through all six installments.

The Six (book 1) follows thirteen year old Darcy Pennington from summer camp in Michigan through a gateway and into a magical world. Once an achingly average teenager, Darcy finds herself, along with her five friends, at the center of prophecy of epic proportions.

What is striking and brilliant about this installment of The Gateway Chronicles is how well Hoyle portrays the awkward and truly painful insecurity of a thirteen year old girl. There are cringeworthy moments throughout the book because it just felt so real!

There are few people in the world who wear thirteen well and I certainly wasn’t one of them. My adult self felt the depth of how ludicrous her mistakes and self-centeredness was. Yet, my pre-teen self was right there with her, feeling the injustices, the need for recognition and affection.

I’m looking forward to rereading the series again!
June 10, 2016
One day while hiking a young girl discovers a portal to another world, the magical land of Alithia. She soon learns of a prophecy claiming that she and five others are destined to save this mystical place. At first the six are unsure of their part in this ancient prophecy. But eventually they learn to work together as a team, united in their efforts to fulfill their destiny and save this enchanted land.

Author K.B. Hoyle pens scenes that pop with vibrant details, making the world of Alitheia vivid and very much alive for the reader. There are new and exciting twists with the turn of each page as this dynamic series unfolds. Hoyle is a gifted author whose stories flow smoothly from one exciting chapter to the next, leaving the reader heartily anticipating the next adventure.

The Gateway Chronicles are a phenomenal and entirely compelling series. As the story progresses all the characters are fleshed out as each grows and develops in maturity. The six encounter struggles to which we can all relate and from which we can all learn. Each book in the series expertly builds upon the last. Hoyle guides her readers through a gauntlet of magic and fantasy adventure as the series builds to a resounding crescendo. The world of fantasy fiction is brought to an entirely new level with this outstanding series. The Gateway Chronicles are destined to become a timeless classic.
Profile Image for Kylie.
242 reviews44 followers
September 29, 2013
NetGalley ARC

The Six is an entertaining, other worldly series for kids (though it was more than easy to enjoy it as an adult too). Elements of the story remind me of The Chronicles of Narnia, what with the traveling to another world, the inventive creatures of fantasy, and the slight religious undertones. It took a while for this story to take off- Hoyle world builds for almost the first 25% of the story. But once the premise is set, there is not a dull moment. The plot is pretty straight forward, and rather predictable in places, but the entrancing characters that Hoyle invents in the other world of this story more than make up for it. I especially loved the idea behind the Nark. The complexity of this creature allows for many discussion topics to be had with students who are reading this book.

I will definitely recommend The Six to any young reader who enjoys fantasy- especially The Chronicles of Narnia. I am always thrilled to have a new series to promote to students and this one will be a hit i'm sure!
Profile Image for Maggie Rapier.
3 reviews
September 7, 2010
I recieved a copy of this book for Christmas, and had heard about it before that, my fellow classmates practically ordering me to read it. It was on my list, granted, but several were before it, but I decided to rethink my order. From the very first chapter it drew me in, and I had no choice but to sit down and read the rest. It took me only a few hours to read, and immediately I went right back to the beginning to reread my favorite parts. The book was well-written, flowed smoothly from one chapter to the next, and held you in constant surprise and suspense as to what would happen next. Personally, I and my friends are resolved to run to the bookstore as soon as 'The Oracle' book 2 of the series comes out. K. B. Hoyle is a brilliant author who spun a web of fantasy and Adventure that captivates the imagination in a way leaving us with pounding hearts and smiling faces. So peers, put down Twilight and pick up 'The Six', I guarantee you will not regret it!
Profile Image for Katie.
33 reviews
December 20, 2009
"The Six" is a great fantasy novel that I did not ever want to put down. When things like school, sleep, and eating kept me from reading I was constantly thinking about the book. I was considering what had transpired in what I had read thus far, and I was trying to make predictions about the things to come. "The Six" is definitely a 'page-turner'. I was always wondering what would happen to Darcy and her friends. K. B. Hoyle also created an entirely new creature, the Nark. The Nark is a fascinating creature to me and I thoroughly enjoyed reading about them. I would love to sit and talk with K. B. Hoyle about the novel and see if I have been seeing things as she meant for them to be seen by her readers. When I read the last line on the last page I was all the more excited about the novel and its sequel, "The Oracle" that comes out fall of 2010.
Profile Image for Andrea (mrsaubergine).
1,469 reviews88 followers
March 29, 2013
OMG, this is ridiculously good! A little bit Narnia, a little bit Harry Potter, all totally addictive. I couldn't put it down, and now I can't wait to start reading The Oracle. I have a feeling Tellius is going to turn into quite a lovely young man, perhaps one even to rival the spunky Perry... Lucky Darcy! I highly recommend this series.
Profile Image for Schledia Phillips.
Author 4 books15 followers
June 17, 2011
The Six kept me from doing a lot of my regular duties. I had a hard time putting it down. In reading it to my children, they would get upset when I closed it for the night.
Profile Image for Brittany.
18 reviews1 follower
January 24, 2019
Really a fun read - in the same vein as Harry Potter or the Narnia series. Children in a magical world confronted with evil. Wonderfully told.
Profile Image for Lauren Jones.
416 reviews11 followers
January 27, 2019
If you just happened to stumble upon a gateway to a new world, what would your first reaction be? Would you be scared, excited, nervous or curious? Hoyle plunges her characters into an adventure that all starts with a prophecy of six individuals, three males and three females, who find their way to a new world—a world that is under distress and a shadow rules the land. The world building is invigorating and the six children find that they can’t wait to begin learning the ropes in this new land filled with magic and mystery.

Darcy absolutely despises the fact that she has to go to camp this year with her family. Her so-called “friend”, Samantha is a bit too annoying and she doesn’t fit in with the kids that are her own age. With little else to do other than play nice and hang out with the rest of Samantha’s friends while at Cedar Grove Family Camp, Darcy happens to find a gateway to a magical world called Alitheia. The people that inhabit this new world are different, not like her or her new friends at the camp, and she finds herself drawn to them and their desperation for help against something that has taken over their land. Not only do they need her help, but they also need the other five in her group. All six of them are the only ones able to help them defeat their enemy, once and for all. When all of the children begin to show signs of their special talents, Darcy feels left out and finds comfort in an animal who she assumes is a friend. With everyone keeping secrets and no one explaining this all-powerful prophecy at hand, Darcy realizes that trusting anyone can get her and her friends in serious danger.

Hoyle has a fantastic story, filled with creativity and originality. The pace is very quick, but easy to follow and the world building is stunning. In this first installment of the Gateway Chronicles, Hoyle creates scenes that are truly vivid for the imagination and all of her characters are entertaining. The story appears to be written fairly well. Since this review compliments the audiobook, Webb was very clear in her voice relay; however, lacked a bit of adequate pronunciation. If you are interested in young adult fantasy, this may be perfect for you.

An audiobook was provided to Turning Another Page by Audiobookworm Promotions and in no way affects the honesty of this review. We provide a four-star rating to The Six by K. B. Hoyle.
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