Friday, August 28, 2009

Fablehaven - Brandon Mull

Summary: For centuries, mystical creatures of all description were gathered to a hidden refuge called Fablehaven to prevent their extinction. The sanctuary survives today as one of the last strongholds of true magic in a cynical world. Enchanting? Absolutely. Exciting? You bet. Safe? Well, actually, quite the opposite...

Kendra and her brother Seth have no idea their grandfather is the current caretaker of Fablehaven. Inside the gated woods, ancient laws give relative order among greedy trolls, mischievous satyrs, plotting witches, spiteful imps, and jealous fairies. However, when the rules get broken, an arcane evil is unleashed, forcing Kendra and Seth to face the greatest challenge of their lives. To save her family, Fablehaven, and perhaps the world, Kendra must find the courage to do what she fears most. (Summary and image from

My Review: Considering I'm not much of a fantasy/mythical enthusiast, this book was pretty good. It again (seems like a lot lately) took me a while to get into: at least the first 100 pages. Once into the novel, I did want to finish and know just how the magic worked and how the myths played out being true for this world.

Kendra was a likable protagonist and her brother added the conflict necessary for a good story.
Like a typical horror flick, Seth made stupid or rash decisions that brought about calamities that required magic to be fixed. I truly enjoyed the ending; how the author wrapped up the dire circumstances.

There are only a couple aspects to the book I, as a mother and tend to be more conservative in this area, felt uncomfortable with. One of those is the idea of bringing magic and evil beings into your life. Not that the book promotes this exactly, but even the grandfather choosing to share this secret with kids makes me a little uncomfortable. Take that as you will; I felt I should mention my gut feelings.

Overall, it was a good read. I enjoyed the fairies and other new creatures that were for the most part kind. I'm definitely going to read the second in the series.

Rating: 4 Stars

Sum it up in a phrase: A fun book full of mythical creatures and magical ideas.


MindySue said...

Kari, what reading level would you put this at? Could it fit in Children's fiction as well or would you keep it strictly YA?

Kari said...

Reading level is probably 6th grade. As a read aloud maybe 5th grade. I wouldn't use it with too young of readers.

MindySue said...

I am thinking of the ages 9-12 ? Would it work for 9-12? Sorry, I don't translate age to grade yet.

Kari said...

I'd say 10/11. I'm most comfortable with 12. But, maybe I'm overly conservative?


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