Mull, Brandon. Sky Raiders (series Five Kingdoms). Simon & Schuster/ Aladdin 2014 421p $16.99 ISBN 978-1-4424-9700-9 elem/ms Fantasy VG-BN
Our young protagonist, Cole Randolph, is trick-or-treating with friends when things begin to unravel while they are “visiting” a haunted house. The kids learn that monsters are real when they are kidnapped and taken underneath the house and into another world as slaves. Cole follows the others to try to rescue them, but is himself captured and sold to the Sky Raiders, who live on the edge of the Five Kingdoms and scavenge from castles floating on clouds. This fantastical adventure grabbed this reader from the get-go, and the action/adventure roller coaster of a story made it difficult to put down. Cole is an interesting character, and the author has done an excellent job in creating a new, fantastical realm to explore. This is the first of a series, so while the ending is rather abrupt, the story will hopefully pick up quickly again in the next book.
Summary: While chasing after his friends under a haunted house, young Cole finds himself in the Five Kingdoms, a place that exists somewhere between the realities of this world and those of another, kind of between life and death or between awareness and dreaming.
Adventure-Fiction --Lynn Fisher