I was contacted by Landel Bilbrey, the author of this book to read and review it here on the blog. Full disclosure: Mr. Bilbrey was kind enough to send me a copy of the book. I warned him that I’d be honest with my review, so here it is.
This story is fantastic. I took the opportunity to read the book aloud to the older boys, and they enjoyed it immensely.
The book is about twin boys, Jadan and Jerol, and their quest to reach the city of Sentinel. The journey takes place over several years, and along the way the boys battle the evil Azrael and his minions. It was very exciting. All of the characters and places in the book have special meaning, for example the boys travel through the Land of Callow as they attempt to reach Sentinel, which is in the Land of Bravura. A map and definitions of the meanings of names was very helpful. There’s also a study guide included in the back of the book.
The author describes it as a cross between The Chronicles of Narnia and Pilgrim’s Progress. I would agree with that, although I’ve not read Pilgrim’s Progress. The story is definitely a Christian allegory with characters representing God, Jesus, and Satan along with various traps and sins we face in life. Many times as we read the story I was struck with the depth of meaning in the different chapters. The story was written for boys between the ages of 8 and 12, although I believe it’s something that girls and adults would enjoy as well.
This is a book that we’ll be able to read again in the future and I know the boys will have a deeper understanding as they age. I’ll be very interested in what they have to say about it after they’ve completed their own journeys to manhood.
I told Mr. Bilbrey that since he gave me the book I would probably have a contest and award it to one lucky reader. But, quite honestly I cannot part with it. Well. I lent it to a friend today. But I’m getting it back soon. 🙂
So. Since I am so fond of the story, and I really do want one of you to read and enjoy it, I’m still going to have the comment contest and I’ll purchase and ship a brand spankin’ new copy for the winner. The contest is open world-wide. All you have to do to be entered in the drawing is leave a comment on this post. Contest ends at midnight Eastern time on Thursday, February 7. Good luck, everyone!
Earnest Parenting: help for parents who want to read awesome books.