When an impulsive bet sets an ancient prophecy in motion, one boy might be all that stands between a small town and the forces of evil.
Twelve-year-old Will Wilder has been seeing shadowy creatures in his peripheral vision all his life. Doctors and his parents have attempted to explain them away as the symptoms of fatigue, but when the dark shapes begin attacking the town, Will is the only one who can fight them. However, if he is going to follow in the footsteps of his relic-hunting great-grandfather and combat the rising evil, Will is going to need his loyal friends, his tough-as-nails great-aunt Lucille, his intelligence, and a good measure of faith. Unfortunately, this too-familiar adventure is hobbled by several significant problems. Action scenes are hampered by odd pacing, poor description, and simplistic puzzles, while the quieter scenes are filled with cringeworthy dialogue and improbable characters. Readers will be continually frustrated by Will’s mindless rebelliousness, Aunt Lucille’s ineffectual mentoring, and the one-dimensionality of Will’s friends. Even the forces of evil seem to lack any real conviction. Includes black-and-white illustrations.
An unhappy blend of an imitative story and mediocre writing. (Fantasy. 8-11)