Title: The Last Shadow Gate
Author: Michael W. Garza
Genre: YA Fantasy
Release Date: March 3rd 2017
Publisher: NeverHaven Press
Summer vacation was never supposed to be like this.
It was bad enough Naomi had to be shipped off to her dad’s home for the summer and deal with her half-brother Gavin, but when the siblings are forced to spend their break with their great-grandmother in upstate New York, everything changes. An investigation into the strange disappearance of their great-grandfather forces them to retrace his footsteps. They discover a gateway between worlds and encounter extraordinary creatures in a land where the people are desperate to escape the coming of a shade lord. To survive their adventure, Naomi and Gavin must settle their differences and find the elusive shadow gate that will take them home again.
The Last Shadow Gate is an adventurous read bound to entertain you! Two kids (aged twelve (Gavin) and fifteen (Naomi)) are sent to their great-grandmother’s house for the summer and nether are happy about it. What they find in the duration of their stay is so much better than either of them ever believed, though. Not only do they find themselves on an adventure while following their great-grandfather’s words in a journal they found, they also discover a whole new world filled with different species and foods and cultures! This foreign world with all these different items they don’t know the names of keep them entertained as they find themselves on a journey to find their great-grandfather. Along the way allies and enemies are made, and discoveries lead to trouble. Gavin and Naomi find themselves changing in this new world, and we get the pleasure of seeing them grow.
The premise intrigued me. The mystery surrounding it kept me in my seat, and I found myself predicting situations that never happened! I wanted Gavin and Naomi to find their great-grandfather, and I expected a lot out of their journey to find him, but I was given an adventure much better than that. There was a battle, multiple fights, and even kidnappings. This book will keep you entertained, there’s no doubt about it. What I loved most however were the new people and places. The world is rich and bright despite being war torn and thrown into darkness. The danger of their journey never stops Gavin and Naomi, even when they feel like giving up. Their friends help them through it all, and it is truly lovely to see the bonds made between characters who differ greatly and come from completely separate worlds.
One thing did confuse me however. Gavin sounds like he is a lot older than twelve at times. He is often described as having muscles (why else would he take his shirt off) and he also seems fairly mature as he takes care of his older sister. He acts more like he is eighteen most of the time, though in the beginning and at certain times he reverts back to acting his age. I understand that the journey may mature him, but even so, it was odd and didn’t quite feel realistic.
Naomi is a whole other story. She was crying the majority of the time, hiding behind her younger brother. I understand how she could be scared considering the fact that they found themselves away from home and in a new world. However, she only seems to get worse. She has good qualities, such as forgiving others, power, and the random sparks of bravery. Honestly though, she feels more like a secondary character.
Overall, this is a rich, adventurous novel that deserves a chance!
Pre-order on Amazon!
THE SHADOW GATE CHRONICLES:
Book 1: The Last Shadow Gate
Book 2: A Veil of Shadows (Coming 2017)
Book 3: The Shadow of War (Coming 2018)
Advance Praise for THE LAST SHADOW GATE:
“If this book had been around when I was a kid, I’d have held it right up there with The Chronicles of
Narnia and Lord of the Rings.” – Sunshine Somerville, Author of THE KOTA SERIES
“You won’t want to miss out on the thrilling yet perilous world beyond the shadow gates!” – J. Cornell Michel, Author of JORDAN’S BRAINS
*If you love fast-paced, YA Fantasy, THE LAST SHADOW GATE is the book for you.*
About the Author
Michael W. Garza often finds himself wondering where his inspiration will come from next and in what form his imagination will bring it to life. The outcomes regularly surprise him and it’s always his ambition to amaze those curious enough to follow him and take in those results. He hopes everyone will find something that frightens, surprises, or simply astonishes them.
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