Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Pendragon #1: The Merchant of Death by D.J. McHale

The Merchant of Death (Pendragon, #1)This book is the first in a series, and I gave it a rating of four out of five. Bobby Pendragon misses his middle school's championship basketball game, because Uncle Press says some people need Bobby's help. Bobby doesn't know much more than that when they enter the flume and travel to another world. Almost as quickly,  Uncle Press is captured by some warriors and Bobby is left on his own. He finds a savage world where the Bedoowans have enslaved the Milagos and are forcing them to mine for gems. The Milago plan to fight back, and they expect Bobby to help lead them. Bobby isn't a warrior, but he becomes more alarmed when he discovers the Milago plan to use an explosive called tak to defeat the Bedoowan. However, they've collected enough tak to blow up their enemies and themselves and send their world into an endless spiral of self-destruction. The survival of this world, and Earth, depends on Bobby.

I'd seen this book on my classroom bookshelf for years but never read it. It's always interesting to read plots where the seemingly untalented character is the key to resolving the conflict. I enjoyed the interaction of Bobby and Loor, because she was a warrior and became disgusted with Bobby's lack of interest in helping. The author had Bobby write journals for Mark and Courtney, two of his Earth friends, that became periodic chapters in the book. This style helped change the pace of the plot and shared necessary information for the reader.

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