Monday, November 3, 2014
Eyes of the Enemy by Kelly Hess
It's Middle Grade Monday! Hooray :) Today I am reviewing the fantasy adventure, Eyes of the Enemy by Kelly Hess. I also have a spotlight of book two in the series, The Green Dagger.
Young Beynn Firehand thinks he is a normal boy, that is until Soraks attack his village and his father sends him off to find help. Soraks look human, but they have opaque eyes and some can work magic. Beynn and his friend Fritz head off into the woods, only to be followed. Then, just by thinking about it, Beynn causes a tree to fall on their pursuers. Stunned, Beynn doesn't understand what is happening or why he has headaches. Fritz has some stunning news! Beynn's eyes have turned white!
The boys find their way to Beynn's uncle's only to have him reveal that Beynn is a Sorak and that his father is not his biological father. Beynn is brought to the land of the Soraks while Fritz heads home with a green dagger to help their village. Beynn's goal is to learn how to control his magic and then return to his village to defeat the rebel Soraks, but someone within the Sorak council wants Beynn dead, and he needs to learn who and fast.
This was a nice read. It is straight forward with few side plots and younger readers will be able to follow along nicely for an exciting ride. The character of Beynn if fun, daring and brave. His entire life Sorak's are the enemy, and then to find out he is one and accept it, takes a strong will. Kids will love reading along as they discover clues about who Beynn is, what powers he has, and who his real father and mother are.
The book also takes a look at the prides of men. The village is betrayed by an elder, and throughout the story the reader sees how his greed ruins the lives of others and how he himself begins to feel about his friends. I think the main point of the story is that a race is not just good or evil, people can be anything. Beynn learns that there are good, friendly Soraks and then also that there are rebels. We also see the village councilor betray his people. I love one part of the book where Beynn's father stops his village from killing two Soraks based on the sole fact that they are Sorak. There are great undercurrents of true friendship and honor within this story.
Now, remember how I said Fritz returned to his village with a green dagger? Well, book two takes a
Tensions rise between Delvengard and Sorak as the Sorak queen demands the return of the Blade of Torrill. As Delvengard scrambles to locate the mythical weapon, many fear war is inevitable.
Fritz, who secretly possesses the dagger, is tormented by its evil. Eager to take control of its power, he journeys in search of a mysterious being who may be able to help.