Friday, October 24, 2008

Erec Rex: The Dragon's Eye

by Kaza Kingsley

Erec's family is kind of...diverse. He lives with his foster mother and five siblings that all have some sort of special need. Erec himself has a glass eye, and occasionally, Erec will get "feelings" that force him to do something. So far, the feelings have always ended up doing something positive, but Erec has to follow through with whatever he is "told" to do and fears the day he is forced to do something horrible. When he wakes up one morning to a babysitter in the house, Erec gets a feeling that he needs to find his mother. So, after sneaking out of the house, Erec eventually finds himself transported to another world, where he is entered into a contest to help find their next kings/queens (there will be three total).

I really enjoyed Erec Rex. It kind of sounded like a wannabe Harry Potter, but I thought Erec stood its own. There are some similarities, but I think they are more related to fantasy than to Harry Potter (orphan who discovers another hidden world, etc) Erec is an interesting character with a lot of backstory that I am looking forward to finding out. He is strong and able to figure a lot of things out on his own, but he is also flawed. There are several scenes where he nearly loses his life because of major mistakes that he makes.

I didn't find the surrounding cast quite as strong. His mother is still very much a mystery. I am hoping that in the next book we will learn more about her and her secrets, though I suspect it won't happen for a few more books. I believe there are to be 8 books total in the series. His friend Bethany was also kind of a question for me. Hopefully we learn more about her as the series progresses as well.

I also really enjoyed all the references to Greek/Roman/Celtic mythology. I caught quite a few as I was reading and later I read an interview by the author where she told of several more. I love books that successfully refer to myths, fables, etc without it taking from the story.

** small SPOILER**

The author also said that Erec is kind of a Hercules (or Herakles as the Greek's spelled it) character, and the next books will be about Erec grappling the 12 tasks required to become a king. Kind of cool sounding.


I look forward to the sequel Erec Rex: The Monsters of Otherness.

3.5 out of 5 stars

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