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The Lodestone Kindle Edition
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For those wondering about the following:
Sex: The book is very clean. One of the male characters is attracted to a female character (from the other world) but there isn't even a hint of sexual innuendo.
Violence: Quite a bit of violence - characters (both good guys and bad) are killed in various ways. The main character Jack, a seventh grader, experiences significant pain from being poisoned early in the book and then is beaten badly again later in the story.
Language: No cursing or vulgar language.
Religion: Religion is not a part of the story.
The story is geared towards a younger audience, but I didn't have any trouble becoming invested in it. A few characters might have been a bit better developed right at the beginning, but the main characters do all have their own personalities and motivations. My interest in the story increased as it progressed and I found myself pretty much glued to my Kindle for the last several pages. And the cats were a nice touch.
There is some violence. A few people die. All in all though, I can't imagine this story being rated anything beyond maybe PG if it were a film.
It looks like it's been awhile since this book was published, which makes me doubt if there will be a sequel. The story has a satisfying conclusion, but there's definitely room for more. If there ever is a sequel I'd be all for it. I'd actually be more interested in a prequel though. There was a lot of action that took place before this story began. It would be fun to explore that.
I believe this is Horne's debut novel, so not quite as polished in its pacing as the Joss the Seven series, but still an energetic and suspenseful romp back and forth between this world and one peopled with mages of various orders. I liked that magic revolved around the groups of animal, vegetable and mineral. It was a clever alignment of magical powers and limitations, and made the world-building -- and the mystical creatures that go with it -- unique and intriguing. Miss Edna (aka Edalwin) is a great mentor figure in the Obiwan Kenobe sort of tradition, and the various mages who come to Earth are fun, too.
As I mentioned, pacing was off a bit sometimes, and reactions of both Earth humans and mages from the other world sometimes seemed to take things in stride more than I would have in the same circumstances, but I loved the premise Horne created. He is a truly gifted story-teller.
By Jimmy Johnson
The adventure of Jack and Sally has a lot of emotion that readers can connect to, yet the fantasy and mystery of each chapter was not something that can be closely identified with other magic-related novels. There is a uniqueness to the plot and themes. While the ending gives some satisfaction or completion, it still leaves part of the story hanging; fulfillment, and yet a need to go get the next book.
It is a tale that not only persuades you to consider each twist and turn, it also hooks the feelings inside you, begging attention and intrigue for the protagonist's plight. The Lodestone is definitely a story I will share with family and friends!
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