Welcome!! My name is Paul Lappen. I am in my early 50s, single, and live in Connecticut USA. This blog will consist of book reviews, written by me, on a wide variety of subjects. I specialize, as much as possible, in small press and self-published books, to give them whatever tiny bit of publicity help that I can. Other than that, I am willing to review nearly any genre, except poetry, romance, elementary-school children's books and (really bloody) horror.

I have another 800 reviews at my archive blog: http://www.deadtreesreviewarchive.blogspot.com (please visit).

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Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Portals, Passages and Pathways

Portals, Passages and Pathways: In the Land of Magnanthia, B R Maul, CreateSpace, 2014

This young adult fantasy novel is about a young boy who suddenly finds himself in very strange circumstances.

Simon is your average nerdy tween. He is good friends with Jessica, his neighbor. With no prior warning, one day, Simon is invited to go on an overnight fishing trip with Jessica and her parents. Their destination is Lake Itasca in Minnesota, the headwaters of the Mississippi River.

Simon becomes more and more sure that Something Is Going On, and that he is the centerpiece of It, whatever it is. Eventually, a portal is opened to another world, and people come through looking for Simon. They come from a place called Magnanthia, and Simon must return with them, because he wears a very powerful ring called the Ring of Affinity.

Meantime, elsewhere, another portal to Earth is opened, and a young man named Jak is taken. He comes from a very rich family, and has become an arrogant little you-know-what. He is in a land called Bedlam, run by an evil person called Severn. Jak is forced into the Maze of Mayhem. Six young men go in, and only one survives. The winner's "prize" is to become an automatic warlock. Is Jak the survivor?

Simon learns that Bedlam and Magnanthia have been at war for many years. The final battle is coming, and things are not looking good for Magnanthia. Simon, and his ring, are a vital part of Magnanthia's hopes for survival. An added complication is that Simon was not supposed to be introduced to Magnanthia for another couple of years. A lot has been thrown at Simon all at once. Does Simon rise to the occasion, or give up and ask to go home?

First of a series, the author does a very good from start to finish, especially with the society building. It's easy to read, and teens will enjoy it.

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