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The Fire Chronicle (Books of Beginning)


The Fire Chronicle (Books of Beginning)

You may remember that siblings Kate, Michael, and Emma discovered they could move backwards and forwards in time using the first of the Books of Beginning. You may also remember that they tried to use this great power in order to find out why their parents disappeared ten years earlier, but instead got swept up in a great struggle for power beyond anything they could ever imagine. While you may not remember all the intricate details, Kate, Michael, and Emma do. They still live with the reality that they may never find their parents.

"No matter where I was in the book, time seemed to stand still and the next thing I knew, it was a hundred pages later. So pick yourself up a copy, and get ready to go on an adventure."

In order to hide the siblings from the evil Dire Magnus, a man who would like nothing more than to get his hands on all three Books of the Beginning, Dr. Pym, their guardian, places the three children into the Edgar Allan Poe Home for Hopeless and Incorrigible Orphans.  Their stay is cut short, though, when they come under attack from the creepy and half-human Screechers. Dr. Pym manages to rescue Michael and Emma while Kate is transported back to New York City to the time when magic was visible to everyone. Kate searches for a way to get back to the present time, and Michael and Emma set out to find the second Books of the Beginning: The Fire Chronicle.

Kate manages to connect with a group of magical orphans in New York City when stuck in the past. It is through them that she learns a very important event will be occurring soon --- all of the magical people and places will be hidden and erased from the memories of the non-magical folk. Kate is excited to see how this will happen, and she is also excited to meet Rafe, a magical orphan who swears he has seen Kate before. Kate knows this can’t be possible, but soon learns that their fates may be intertwined --- for better or for worse.

Michael and Emma’s quest to find the Fire Chronicle takes them from Italy to South America to Antarctica and into a hidden world full of dangerous creatures and lush landscapes. It is here that Michael and Emma learn that finding The Fire Chronicle will be next to impossible. With Kate stuck in the past, Michael decides to assume leadership, but he’s not sure if he will know what to do when they’re up against desperate circumstances. There is, unfortunately, no other option.

The middle book in a trilogy can sometimes seem to be a placeholder --- it may move the plot along just enough to set you up for the climatic ending. Well, you won’t find anything like that here. THE FIRE CHRONICLE ratchets up the action and provides more clues and mysteries about the Books of the Beginning and why the Dire Magnus is so interested in getting them for himself. There is also the fascinating back story of the Dire Magnus, and it’s enough to blow your socks off. I also can’t remember the last time a book just sucked me in like THE FIRE CHROINCLE did. No matter where I was in the book, time seemed to stand still and the next thing I knew, it was a hundred pages later. So pick yourself up a copy, and get ready to go on an adventure.

Reviewed by Benjamin Boche on June 5, 2012

The Fire Chronicle (Books of Beginning)
by John Stephens