I read and reviewed Deception Peak this fall and knew this mini epic adventure was going to be a huge hit. Dianne Gardner weaves a world of good and bad, light and dark, hope and despair. When we left Ian at the end of Deception Peak, he was an angry scared young man just beginning his career in high school. Now he is a headstrong independent 18 year-old who has a mind of his own.
With his father still lost in the Realm and Ian facing with a future facing two different directions. Struggling with all the questions a normal high school graduate faces, the loss of his father still left unanswered and the prophecy of Ian being the savior of the Realm, plus a dragon to face down... is Ian ready and mature enough to handle this all? Should he click the control and deal with the unfinished business in the Realm or should he pursue a career utilizing his artistic and graphic art talents.
As with the first in the series this book quickly drew me in and felt all the hurt, the frustration and confusion Ian felt. Dianne has a very poignant style of writing which allows you to lose yourself in the Realm along with Ian. I would love to see this adapted into a movie adventure! (I am sure Dianne would too, but seriously this is a wonderful story and I would love to see this on the big screen! I can see Ian on the back of Sparkle now, galloping through the grasslands and along the shore. It is a wonderful read! I loved how she is able to get not only into the head of a 18-year-old but also express the emotional responses of the father as well as the 18 year-old, Abbi whom he has lived with and is one of the only ones who knows his secret.
I recommend this for all your Harry Potter and fantasy adventures readers in your household. They will adore this series! It is an approved family read because the nature of the read is not only enjoyable to adults (hey I am a tough sell) but it deals with many issues and lessons that the middle age school child needs to learn. Issues such as honor, integrity respect and above all honesty. It also shows how loss can affect a child. As an adult it is good to see this perspective to help us understand and help them get through this. It is interesting to see from both Ian and his father's eyes see how children deal with situations and loss differently. This is the one thing that really makes this a five-star book, Dianne's ability to show so many different takes on things. It is pretty hard for a book to teach a lesson to both a child and an adult, and this one will. So grab it and read it with the child who is fighting dark elves and evil orcs in the backyard and share an adventure together!