Title: The Paladin Prophecy
Author: Mark Frost
Genre: YA Science Fiction
Series: Paladin Prophecy (Book 1)
Publication Date: September 25, 2012
Format: Hardcover, 560 Pages
ISBN-10: 0375870458 (Random House)
ISBN-13: 978-0375870453 (Random House)
Reviewed by: Emmy
Will West is careful to live life under the radar. At his parents’ insistence, he’s made sure to get mediocre grades and to stay in the middle of the pack on his cross-country team. Then Will slips up, accidentally scoring off the charts on a nationwide exam.
Now Will is being courted by an exclusive prep school . . . and is being followed by men driving black sedans. When Will suddenly loses his parents, he must flee to the school. There he begins to explore all that he’s capable of–physical and mental feats that should be impossible–and learns that his abilities are connected to a struggle between titanic forces that has lasted for millennia.
Co-creator of the groundbreaking television series Twin Peaks, Mark Frost brings his unique vision to this sophisticated adventure, which combines mystery, heart-pounding action, and the supernatural.
Quick & Dirty: High-stakes and over-flowing with action, The Paladin Prophecy is a intense read. A hilarious hero with a secretive past and new friends at a strange school are thrown into a war with an alternate dimension.
Opening Sentence: The Importance of an Orderly Mind Will West began every day with that thought even before he opened his eyes.
While I was reading this novel, and for a few hours afterward, The Paladin Prophecy had me buzzing. It was the most exciting story to read. This is a novel that will have you turning pages so fast you’ll get papercuts. When a black SUV follows Will down a street on his run, he thinks they’re just looking for a house number. Until he gets a text from his father, who’s all the way in San Francisco, saying nothing but RUN, WILL. It seems impossible that the two could be connected — until the SUV tries to run him down. Will runs faster than he’s ever run before — so fast he can’t even believe it — without breaking a sweat. When Doctor Rollins comes to school to invite Will to an exclusive, secret academy in Wisconsin, he realizes he hasn’t been living under the radar like his parents taught him.
There are rules. Will’s father drilled them into him at an early age, numbers 1 through 97. Always on the move, always under the radar, his father’s rules have been what’s kept him safe. Now, on the run from a strange group of men and his own family, Will’s left with no where to go but The Center for Integrated Learning. No cell phones, no laptops, the school encourages face-to-face communications and challenging work. While all these rules grate on Will’s sense of independence, it isn’t long before he realizes the Center is the first place he can really belong.
He makes friends, for the first time friends that will last. And he begins to find secrets. A student who invades the minds of others and his powers to bully people. His friend Ajayhas a photographic memory and incredible understanding of technology. Some of the students at the Center are more than prodigies. Just like Will.
Though, Will’s got another talent. He sees things as they really are. Dwayne the owner of a mysterious Prowler who happens to save his life, begins popping up where Will least expects it — always in time to save him. There are monsters coming through the Never-Was and somehow they’re connected to his family. This is where the science fiction gets a little obscure, but the story is set up so Will knows almost nothing — because knowing is dangerous.
Will is a hilarious narrator. It took me a few chapters to get into the story, but his sarcasm and smarta$$ comments helped me keep reading. Once the story gets started it becomes the most exciting reading ever. I couldn’t put the book down. Something was always happening — this book is jam packed with mysteries all strangely woven together. The characters, Will and his new band of friends, are smart and resourceful. Because of this I had no problem believing they really could figure out what happened to Will’s parents. The boys’ banter helped move even the slow parts — by this I mean areas when the characters are learning something new and not, you know, fighting monsters — of the story at a fast clip. This novel was a blast to read. I highly recommend it to anyone who likes their heroes witty and resourceful.
“And you just arrived this morning. Where did you fly in from?”
“Are those the only clothes you brought with you?”
“More or less.”
Ajay stopped on a landing and assessed him. “You’re going to die almost immediately from hypothermia.”
“So I’ve been told.”
“How much money do you have?” asked Ajay.
“What comes below abject poverty?”
“Tell me you don’t already have a mad crush on Brooke.”
Will finally caught up, his head throbbing. “What makes you think that?”
Ajay shook his head in disappointment and continued down. “Good God, man, we have our work cut out for us.”
The Paladin Prophecy Series:
FTC Advisory: Random House Books for Young Readers provided me with a copy of The Paladin Prophecy. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
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