May 8, 2015

e-ARC Review of Balance Keepers: The Fires of Calderon by Lindsay Cummings

Release Date: September 23, 2014
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Page Count: 352
Format: e-ARC
Genre: MG/Fantasy
After following a mysterious map into the woods and then under the woods, eleven-year-old Albert Flynn learns he’s a Balance Keeper—someone with special magical skills for fixing problems in three underground Realms at the Core of the earth. His new job is important; if the realms fall out of balance, the world above could be in great danger.
Albert and his Balance Keeper teammates Birdie and Leroy arrive in the Core not a moment too soon. There’s an Imbalance in the Calderon Realm and it’s threatening to bury Albert’s hometown of New York City in a mountain of ash.
The three must train hard completing mental and physical challenges, but above all, they must harness the power of their Tiles—unique superpowers given to each Balance Keeper. So far, Albert’s mastered the art of not mastering his Tile....
With the situation in Calderon growing worse every day, can Albert, Leroy, and Birdie restore balance before New York is destroyed forever? Will Albert master his Tile before it’s too late?
*an e-ARC of this book was given to me via Edelweiss in exchange for a fair and honest review*

I'm usually not a person who reads MG books (Rick Riordan's books are, of course an exception) but after seeing Balance Keepers on Edelweiss I decided to request it for the hell of it. While it was certainly a fun book to read its not one that I necessarily loved let alone really liked. The author meets her target audience with this book but as a mostly YA reader I just didn't feel that click towards it.

The world that Balance Keepers takes place in is a colorful and descriptive place but at the same time one that I found a bit strange. Complete with things like magical tiles that grant powers and unique animals like the one on the cover art of the book. However, while I usually love fantasy books with these kinds of setting I just didn't like this one that much. Maybe it was because of how the characters interacted with it or maybe it was because of the plot but I just felt let down by the setting/world building.

Even with the characters and the plot I felt mostly the same way, semi-interesting but not enough to keep me captivated. Albert, the main character is kind of a "average" boy who has to spend his summer with his mailman dad when he finds out he is a Balance Keeper. Along with several others he spends his summer in this magical forest working on their skills and abilities. It felt like a mixture of Percy Jackson and Harry Potter but with less "violence" and an overall cleaner story. Perfect for the younger audience but not so much for me.

While I decided to trudge my way through Fires of Calderon I'm pretty sure that I will not be reading the sequel. Took my chances with a type of book that I don't read usually and unfortunately it didn't pay off for me. If you liked Percy Jackson/Harry Potter or read a lot of MG than this is probably more your style.

3/5 - OK book

No comments:

Post a Comment