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The Key of Skeleton Peak

(Legends of the Lost Causes #3)

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4.85  ·  Rating details ·  27 ratings  ·  21 reviews
Dark magic meets the Old West in this third installment of the Legends of the Lost Causes, as a group of vigilante orphans go head-to-head against an outlaw sorcerer in pursuit of an ancient and powerful magical artifact!

Keech Blackwood and his fellow Lost Causes have won their share of battles, but the war against the ruthless sorcerer Reverend Rose still rages on.

This t
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Hardcover, 464 pages
Published March 17th 2020 by Henry Holt & Company
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Average rating 4.85  · 
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Travis
Sep 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was fortunate enough to read an early copy of the book, and I must say that I am thoroughly impressed. The authors do great job with world building, character development, and pace. It is definitely a page turner and an excellent ending to a phenomenal series. Tens across the board! The poignant messages about love, friendship, and acceptance are messages that many children (and adults) can learn to adopt. Our heroes are excellent role models with lots of grit, courage, and heart. Give this se ...more
Brenda
Apr 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020, adventure, fantasy
I must say it's been a wonderful distraction and pleasure to read the Legends of Lost Causes series over the last month. The world-building has been awesome and the authors really root you in the wild west. Including even the smallest details like using cottonwood buds as a natural remedy for wound healing. There's plenty of instances of traveling by horseback and all the perils associated with climbing up mountains. With some exciting moments of danger thrown in to ramp the suspense.

The Key of
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Paige Green
Mar 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. Thanks! All opinions are my own.

Book: The Key of Skeleton Peak

Author: Brad McLelland & Louis Slyvester

Book Series: Legends of the Lost Causes Book 3

Rating: 5/5

Publication Date: March 17, 2020

Genre: MG Fantasy/Western

Recommended Age: 12+ (some death, some scary moments and monsters)

Publisher: Henry Holt & Company

Pages: 464

Amazon Link

Synopsis: Dark magic meets the Old West in this third installment of the Legends of the Lost Causes, as a group o
...more
Jean
Jan 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was fortunate enough to get an advanced copy of this book. While I'm sad to see an end to the story of the Lost Causes, the final book in the trilogy does not disappoint. What began as a story of friendship, trust, and self-discovery with the first book has ended with a story of more of the same. While this is a book for young readers, its message of the importance of friendship and collective effort is one for all ages. The fascinating merging of occult story and western tale is wonderfully d ...more
Darby Karchut
Apr 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Whoo-weee! What a stampede of emotions I experienced reading this final book in the series. Joy, rage, heartbreak, goosebumps, and best of all, eucatastrophe (a tip of the ol’ Stetson to J.R.R. Tolkien here). The action never stopped, nor did the plot twists. Every time I thought I knew what was going to happen next, the writers veered off in an unexpected direction. Keech and Duck and Quinn and the rest of the Lost Causes needed every bit of grit and teamwork (as well as some unexpected help ar ...more
Brad McLelland
Nov 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Dear Reader,

A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter.

Keech Blackwood and his Lost Causes have ridden a long way to seek justice, and on March 17, they'll take their last courageous stand against the Reverend Rose and his forces of darkness. My pard Louis and I are so excited to offer you the FINAL volume in the award-winning Legends of the Lost Causes trilogy, a tale of justice, magic, and friendship in the Old West. We hope you enjoy our story and that you'll leave us your review to help spread th
...more
Pop Bop
Jun 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Standin' Tall

With a tagline like "Dark magic meets the Old West" this book series sounded like it could be a muddled mess. Well, it turns out that all three books in the series deliver in spades in terms of both dark magic fantasy and classic Old West adventure. This book concludes the series; you probably need to have read at least the first book, ("Legends of the Lost Causes"), in order to follow the action and fully appreciate the conclusion. But that said, this is a series worth tracking dow
...more
Clint Clausing
Mar 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was fortunate and honored to get to read an early copy of this book. The Key of Skeleton Peak wraps up the story of the Lost Causes with nuanced character development and boffo action. The story follows Keech Blackwood and his young companions as they trail the evil Reverend Rose across the plains on a collision course to a confrontation with ancient evil. The novel is action packed with nefarious new enemies, revealed hidden secrets, heroic saves, and a cinematic, heart-stopping conclusion. A ...more
Christina
Nov 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Lucky me, I got to read an advance copy of this book.

The authors of the Legends of the Lost Causes have done it again - written a book that's just not like anything else out there. With its mix of high-stakes western trail adventure, camaraderie, endurance, myth, magic, action, and suspense, all three of these books call cinematic images in my mind. I find myself holding my breath, wondering how and even if characters will make it though the tough spots in which they find themselves.

Highly reco
...more
Aaron
Mar 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was fortunate to have a chance to read an early copy of this book, which comes out next week. I enjoyed this third book in the Legends of the Lost Causes series. I thought it was the third of a four book series, but it seems like it could be the conclusion of a trilogy (plans do change). It is hard to write a review of a third book without spoiling books 1 and 2. This is a series set in the mid-19th century, but isn't historical fiction per se, it reads more like a fantasy series, with a lot o ...more
BreeAnn (She Just Loves Books)
The finale of this series was so wonderful! The Key of Skeleton Peak lived up to every one of my expectations. The characters have really grown into themselves. They are friends from start to end, and I believe it is an excellent example for children.

This book had all the action and adventure a child (or adult) could want from a fantasy book. There are evil beings to beat, magic, exciting, and action-packed, scenes, and friends that stick together. I really enjoyed the book from start to finish
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Jennifer
May 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The love child of Harry Potter and Tom Sawyer. This series will delight middle grade and adult readers alike. The story contains a cast of characters that will stay with you long after you close the back cover. The adventures of the lost causes will keep you engaged and entertained. Don’t let the middle-grade moniker fool you. The plot has complexity, as well as, historical and cultural reference to appeal to the adult reader. It is a perfect marriage of fiction for youth and literature for adul ...more
Berta Hartzell
Apr 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens
This. Book. Was. Amazing! This series was AMAZING!
I hated ending the saga of the Lost Causes. By the end, the characters were chums and we had shared adventures beyond belief. I loved the creatures and characters McLelland and Sylvester wove throughout the three books. My students have LOVED these stories. I am not a fan of westerns or zombies, BUT this series was brilliant in the way it pulled in folklore, strange otherworldly creatures, and age-old magic. This last book in the series is as goo
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Anne O'Brien Carelli
Nov 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved reading this series, but more importantly, I loved discussing the books with a middle grader who is very particular about what he's willing to read. He could not resist this action-packed series set in the Wild West (with very respectful treatment of the Osage Nation culture). There are zombies, outlaws, and some dark magic that make these books adventure-filled page-turners. I know that The Key is the final in the series, but perhaps a companion novel, or maybe another one that time tra ...more
Amy
Mar 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Key of Skeleton Peak, the third and final installment from McLelland’s and Sylvester’s series, Legends of the Lost Causes, is by far my favorite from this series. I am sad to say goodbye to Keech and his friends.
I give The Key of Skeleton Peak a very well deserved five plus stars. I highly recommend this book, as well as, the rest of the series. I think they should not be missed. It is great for younger readers and I am happy to pass my copies on to my children’s school library.
I received
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Meaghan Hurn
Mar 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
While we weren't ecstatic to see the end to the series of Lost Causes, the final book in the trilogy does not disappoint! The fascinating merger of occult story and western tale is wonderfully done, and the characters were a joy to travel with throughout the trilogy.

Brad McLelland and Louis Sylvester have written poignant messages about love, friendship, and acceptance are messages that many children (and adults) can learn to adopt.

We can't endorse this amazing series enough. You and your kiddos
...more
Jelena Milašinović
I don't know for sure if The Key of Skeleton Peak is the last instalment of the Legends of the Lost Causes series, but it's a great addition to the series. Furthermore, it concludes the story so well with a flair specific to the authors.

I really enjoyed the story, it's was well written and rounded up and all in all this series was a welcome respite from the grim self isolation days of the 2020 pandemic.
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Matthew Keith
Apr 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The final installment of the Legends of the Lost Causes. Keech Blackwood and his gang finds the source of all their troubles and a lot more about the past. Filled with twists and surprises, you couldn't ask for a better ending to wrap up the series. ...more
Carla Kervin
Dec 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Oh, my goodness! What a great ending to this wonderful trilogy! Brad gave me the opportunity to read this in PDF. I want to say how much I enjoyed it! Twists and turns I never expected kept me in suspense! Great job to these two authors. Keep up the good work.
Ryan
Apr 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Staggeringly genius. Enthralling. Grippingly exciting. Mind numbing action. Fingers crossed for the Netflix adaptation. The series would put Stranger Things on notice.
Jesse
Mar 03, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Graham (age 12) and I just wrapped this one up. It is a thoughtful and fun book that kept us interested until the end.
Nikki Valdez
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Oct 11, 2020
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Kara
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Louis Sylvester
Feb 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
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Born and raised in Arkansas, Brad McLelland spent several years working as a crime journalist in the South before earning his MFA in creative writing from Oklahoma State University. A part-time drummer and singer, Brad lives in Oklahoma with his wife, stepdaughter, a mini-Aussie who gives hugs, and a chubby cat who begs for ham.

Other books in the series

Legends of the Lost Causes (3 books)
  • Legends of the Lost Causes (Legends of the Lost Causes, #1)
  • The Fang of Bonfire Crossing (Legends of the Lost Causes, #2)

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