Gatehouse: The Door to Canellin
Genre: YA, fantasy
Paperback: 300 pages
Publisher: OnMyOwn Publishing (April 29, 2011)
Source: A copy was provided by the author in exchange for a review
Wes is a teenage with teenage troubles, who feels as if his world is crashing down around him. But when he discovers the house in the woods that wasn't there before, he finds himself thrust into Canellin, a world of dragons, monsters, magic, and mayhem. What's more, he discovers that his own unique talents may be the key to Canellin's salvation, and his own. Unfortunately, his only way home is halfway around the known world, in the lands controlled by an evil dragon bent on the eradication of all human life!
The synopsis from the back cover does NOTHING for this book. It sounds good, but it doesn't even begin to hint on all of the complex and completely awesome elements found in The Door to Canellin.
To begin with, there were multiple plots intricately woven together. It was amazing to read the same story told from several characters' points of view AND still be able to find the depth in each individual character. All of the plots eventually merged into the same story, which heightened the climax of the story.
Most books that I have read lately have followed a traditional plot line. Rising action, climax, falling action and resolution-- just like the books in your high school literature class. All of the elements were in this book (obviously), but it was a constant up and down, which kept me turning the pages. Just when I thought that some major catastrophic event was about to occur, the story would switch to a new character--or take a completely unexpected turn-- and start to build the tension anew. It was knuckle-biting suspense all the way through.
I'm a huge fantasy fan; I can't even pretend like I'm not. With that being said, it's no surprise that I was drawn to the magical/fantasy elements in this book. What fantasy fan can resist a maniacal dragon, wizards, and double crossing dragon warriors? Not to mention our Black Knight worthy of Arthurian legend (definitely some similarities there) and the lovable and honorable thief, Elarie. Oh, and there is Jiane-- a completely rockin' swordsWOMAN that can best the top blademasters.
As I said, I liked how everything tied together. The complex story was well thought out and orchestrated. The details certainly make this story! The ending is complete, but also sets the stage for future novels. Plus, the underlying theme of father and son relationship building was great. It didn't seem over the top or forced. It was believable, and a great coming of age story.
This story will continue in the fall of 2011 when Gatehouse: The Door to Justice hits the shelves. For more information check out The Door to Canellin's blog and website.