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287 pages, Kindle Edition
First published January 1, 2009
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.
Previous Reviews: The Six, The Oracle, The White Thread, The Enchanted, The Scroll, The Bone Whistle
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.