“I am the darkness between worlds, and between elementary particles, and inside your own mind. I am the emptiness before birth and after death, the ancient indifference of the stars, and of what lies beyond the stars -“
Simon Frost is a teen who has lived a life steeped in sadness and mediocrity. He has failed his magical apprenticeship and is toiling away in the mailroom when he receives an unusual letter. A small village is requesting The Foundation’s help to protect them from a monster and his superiors tell him to ignore it. In his heart, he just can’t ignore this plea for help. He knows he’s not got enough power to fight the monster himself but he hopes that he can at least validate the claim and get these people help. What he finds in the small town challenges him in every way possible and our little anti-hero rises to the occasion learning about the truth of the world; the magic he so desperately wants as well as unraveling the truth of his own history and just who he is and who he is meant to be.
Despite his inability to do any magic of note, Simon has this deep, compassionate heart. That shines through in every page. He slowly gains courage and faces some really hard truths in his pursuit of this monster. There are beautiful lessons of courage, loyalty and acceptance in this story.
Simon has a Harry Potter-like quality; a meek, young boy who has to decide whether he wants to stand up and do the right thing even if it means putting himself at risk. The world building is as complex and yet readable as Harry Potter so even though it is aimed at middle grade it is perfect for fantasy fans of every age.
Thanks to Harper Collins for a copy of this novel. All opinions above are my own.
Do you like a story with a scrappy little nobody who finds inner strength and changes the world?