Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Everworld, Gateway to the Gods, by K.A. Applegate

I picked this book up at a garage sale, not realizing it is book 7 in a series. She tells the backstory so well that it took me several chapters to finally figure this out! That's impressive. Or just pathetic about me.

The story is of four friends and one other girl who are trapped in another universe, Everworld, where the Greek gods are. They are trying to save Zeus and crew. They have their "other selves" that are still living on Earth, doing their daily stuff, which is an interesting thought, and when they sleep, they go back in their minds to that self. At first, I wasn't sure if this was MG or YA, which is always a fascinating topic for me since it's what I'm struggling with most in my own manuscript right now. The voice of the girl feels like a middle grader to me (or young YA), but she could be older and I just didn't realize it. I think I was thrown by the similiaries in basic plot (Olympians) to Percy and the Olympians, which even though I sometimes see as a YA, I argue is really a middle grade. BUT in this story, the girl is wrestling with her faith in God (she is Catholic) verses her ability to trust in Athena...which is a YA topic...but there is really no romance happening here, even though you've got 3 guys and 1 girl in life threatening situations. She might have a crush on one of the guys, but it's subtle in this book. I can't speak for the earlier books. Based on the excerpt from book 8, the narrator rotates among the character, which is interesting, but I'm not sure I'd love it. As a female, I immediately connected with April-- her voice felt very realistic. The action moved along quickly and I found the book to be an enjoyable read. Recommended!
(Final note: the cover is creepy for small children.)

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