Friday, May 24, 2013

Review: New Lands

New Lands (The Chronicles of Egg, book two)
By Geoff Rodkey
Published 2013 by Putnam Juvenile

WARNING: There will probably be spoilers for book one. To read my review of that title, go here.

After escaping from Deadweather Island (just barely), Egg and Guts make their way for the New Lands, hoping to solve the mystery of the map that Egg remembers but doesn't understand. But the path ahead will not be easy for the two boys, as they encounter Kira, a mysterious and possibly dangerous native girl, Millicent, Egg's true love who may be double-crossing him out of loyalty to her father, and, of course, the dastardly Roger Pembroke. These surprises and more await the young pair in this thrilling adventure story.

The first book in this series, Deadweather and Sunrise, was one of my favorite reads last year (and incidentally, one of my most read reviews as well). I was definitely anticipating the sequel eagerly. What adventures would Egg and Guts find next? Would they figure out the secrets of the map? Would Egg and Millicent be reunited? Could the evil Roger Pembroke truly be defeated? I have no idea how many installments in this series that Rodkey has planned but if they are all as excellent as these first two, then I hope the answer is many. New Lands (despite its not nearly as interesting title) is just as thrilling and exhilarating as the first. We get to know more about Egg and Guts and Millicent, as well as meet a new fascinating character in Kira, and even uncover secrets of some of the secondary characters (oh, that tease at the end about Roger Pembroke - curse you, Geoff Rodkey!). Some questions are answered (Egg's family! The secret of the map! BURN HEALY!!) and more mysteries are presented (ROGER PEMBROKE WHAT IS YOUR STORY??). The characters are just as wonderful - I love the continuing development of the relationship between Egg and Guts. Millicent is still struggling with the truth about her father, and I think it continues to be explored in a realistic manner. This entry in the series is also just as funny and heartfelt as the first. I laughed out loud a number of times, and I got teary a few times as well (BURN HEALY, I'M TELLING YOU GUYS!). This book ends on a phenomenal cliffhanger and I find myself once again faced with the nearly impossible task of waiting for the next book. Please, please, if you haven't already, read this series and recommend it to every kid you know. They will thank you, trust me.

Thanks to the publisher for an advance reader's copy.

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