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|Title: #1: Starlighter|
By: Bryan Davis
Number of Pages: 400
Publication Date: 2010
|Dimensions: 8.5 X 5.5 (inches)|
Series: Dragons of Starlight
Stock No: WW718369
For years, tales of
from another world kidnapping and enslaving humans have been circulating in Jason Masters world, while for a slave girl named Koren, the stories of a human world seem pure myth. Together, these two teens will need to bridge two planets in order to overthrow the draconic threat and bring the lost slaves home.
What if the Legends Are True?
Jason Masters doubted the myths that told of people taken through a portal to another realm and enslaved by dragons. But when he receives a cryptic message from his missing brother, he must uncover the truth and find the portal before its too late. At the same time, Koren, a slave in the dragons realm, discovers she has a gift that could either save or help doom her people. As Jason and Koren work to rescue the enslaved humans, a mystic prophecy surrounding a black egg may make all their efforts futile.
Cue sword fights.
Bryan Davis is back in his element with dragons, legends, and alternate dimensions. Longtime fans of the author will feel right at home with this latest installment; swords and special powers show up every other page. Gallant heroes traverse alternate dimensions and fend off vicious dragons. Prophecies (usually of the older-than-time-itself variety) crop up very frequently and always rhyme. It is unapologetically a fantasy book.
For all its clear fantasy elements, though, Starlighter is also a blatantly Christian story. Characters make a big deal of following the Code (the Bible, for those of you taking notes), and Scripture shows up frequently albeit worded differently (You shall know love when a man sacrifices for a pauper, etc.). There are several reverential references to the Creator Above. One particular character seems to represent the devil, although it is, as yet, pretty ambiguous. All of the heroes are unquestionably good (though sometimes good just means nice to other people), and even some of the bad guys end up being not-so-very-evil after all.
All that being said, this book of fantasy would not be especially fantastic for grown-ups. The plotting stumbles under its own weight at times, and some of the elements are a little overdone. Rhyming prophecies and bad-guys-who-become-good-guys may show up too often for some peoples tastes. Readers looking to get their dragon fix while they wait for the next Eragon book are not likely to find it here.
Even so, younger readers will eat this up, and discerning parents wont have to worry if their children are being exposed to the unsavory things becoming steadily more prominent in our culture. All of the messages here are scripturally sound: love one another (John 13:34), free the captives (2 Corinthians 3:17), and obey authority even when it is inconvenient (Romans 13:1). Anyone with a child who loves dragons but isnt quite up Eragons length and weight should be on the lookout for Starlighter and its sequels; expect many of them to start fighting dragons in the backyard, yelling For the Lost Ones! Chandler Birch, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
Jason Masters has heard many stories about, the Lost Ones, humans kidnapped by cruel dragons and forced to work as slaves in a parallel world called Starlight. All his life he has been training to slay dragons, even though he is not sure if they really exist. When Jasons brother sends a secret message revealing that he used a portal to cross over from Darksphere (their home) into Starlight, Jason embarks on a quest to locate the portal and help his brother rescue the Lost Ones. Meanwhile, a Lost One named Koren learns that she is a Starlighter, a storyteller prized for the ability to entrance dragons with her tales. She has dreamed all her life of escaping to Darksphere. Together Jason and Koren battle dragons and take a group of Lost Ones through the portal to freedom. Jason and Korens stories are told in alternating chapters, weaving them together and setting the stage for the collaborative struggle at the conclusion of the novel. The conclusion wraps up the main storyline for the first installment of this new series; however, the novel contains a large cast of secondary characters, several of which seem to disappear as the story progresses. Fans of other Christian fantasy series such as Donita K. Pauls The Dragon Keepers Chronicles (WaterbrookPress) will be eager to read this series. The religious message is subtle, so non-Christian fantasy fans may enjoy this novel as well. ---Amy Wykoff. VOYA August 2010