As thirteen-year-old Martha Zachary heads home from basketball practice one afternoon, her biggest worry is whether her junior high basketball team will ever beat their archrival. But when a gray-haired man with piercing eyes approaching her, Martha has no idea her life is about to change forever.
After Merlin, the wizard of legend introduces himself, he informs Martha he is on a mission from God; it is his job to both teach and protect her. Through his gentle guidance, Martha soon discovers she is destined to carry out a great calling-to lead others to the final faceoff between good and evil. Merlin assures her that she will ready, but Martha secretly wonders how she can apply the wizard’s ancient lessons to her own modern life, centered around her best friend, Anna, and her eighth-grade basketball team.
In this inspirational, exciting story, just as a teenager learns the truth behind a power greater than any other on earth, the tension peaks in a locker room showdown with a demon and his shadow army-right before the big game!
There are two main protagonists in this novel, and both are extremely well written. The female lead is loyal and honest but, as with all girls her age she has her flaws and weaknesses. The way in which the Author portrays her throughout the book makes her seem real and just a regular girl in less than ordinary circumstances; it’s the way in which she deals with this circumstances, comes to terms with new-found abilities and fights to the end, that makes her different from any other character in a book of this type that I have read. She deals with her situation in such a way that has the reader cheering her on; is she a complainer, not at all and this was what I so enjoyed about her. It’s been a long time since a character has appeared in a book that girls can relate to and, possibly for the young bookworm, wants to be as like as they can possibly be. It’s a great Author that can carry the energy that is put into one character over into their other main character, but this Author has pulled that off with ease. There is no skimping with development and personality of the male lead; he plays a full role in this novel that inspires and motivates his counterpart while, at the same time reaching out with these qualities to touch the reader. In these two protagonists the Author has created a world that will appeal to readers both male and female, they really are inspirational. Lesser characters are woven into the storyline with ease, and the reader is never left wondering who they were and what their role in the big scheme of things is.
Adventure, magic, the typical school showdowns, everything is included in this novel without making it feel like an overstuffed couch waiting to explode; there is just the right amount of detail to fit the size of the book. It’s almost as if the Author were creating a gourmet dish, and needed to make sure that all the ingredients were exact and added in the right order. The exactness in which this was achieved would mean if this book were a restaurant, it would probably receive a Michelin 5 star rating.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone that loves magic and adventure, and those who are looking for something different, inspiring and non-offensive to read to their children and grandchildren. I am looking forward to reading the remainder of this series and, although not in the same genre; move over Nancy Drew, I feel your place has been filled by someone new.