Friday, May 19, 2017

Simon Thorn #1: Simon Thorn and the Wolf's Den by Aimee Carter

Simon Thorn and the Wolf's Den (Simon Thorn, #1)My name is Simon, and I just learned that I am an Animalgam, a human with the ability to change into an animal. Actually, I'm a Hybred, since my parents were from different animal kingdoms. I haven't been able to morph yet, so I don't know what animal I will become. I never would have believed this if I hadn't been able to speak to animals for years, and I witnessed my mom changing into an eagle and my uncle changing into a wolf! My grandfather rules over the bird kingdom, and my mom has been taken captive by the mammals and is being held in the L.A.I.R. at the Central Park Zoo. I've been allowed in, since my grandmother is the Alpha, ruler of the mammals. I've learned that she is trying to get all five pieces of a scepter that will allow her to take the powers of animals from other kingdoms. I'm even more surprised to discover I have a twin brother, and one of us may be killed for being the heir to the Beast King.

This book is the first in the series, although I read the Simon Thorn and the Viper's Pit first. I actually preferred the second book more,  but this one helped me understand Simon's situation better. I  now understand why Simon is helped by a black widow spider, a dolphin, and a cottonmouth snake. Unlike most other books where characters are discovering new powers, Simon doesn't display any abilities until the book's climax. Other characters take turns helping him, but he doesn't really have one sidekick, except for Felix. Felix is a tiny mouse who is also Simon's best friend, although one character describes him as a bloodthirsty rat. Action is spaced throughout the plot, and mystery is included too. The secrets of the scepter, Simon's father, and the conflicts between the kingdoms are slowly revealed. Simon's brother has a hard time accepting this relationship, but the big question is which boy might have inherited abilities of the Beast King. The truth is surprising and leads directly into the sequel.

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