When four teenagers disappear in a Pennine lake in
Nathan and his friends find themselves in a strange land, prisoners of the Alvor. If Nathan is to ever get his friends home, he must outsmart deceitful allies, battle murderous enemies and venture into the very heart of the Trollking’s stronghold.
But the trials of their individual journeys are nothing compared to what lies at journey’s end...
The Changeling King is a young adult epic fantasy that is sure to challenge any young reader—in the best possible way. It is a unique melding of teenage angst with classic fantasy: 5stars out of 5.
The beginning of the book is very descriptive and will definitely leave any young readers reaching for a dictionary, but this is an aspect of the book I particularly enjoyed. It was nice to read a young adult work that did not over-simplify the narrative.
The first chapter sets up the conflicts nicely and creates a compelling amount of drama. The rotating points of view were well crafted, as were the transitions between worlds and time periods.
I found that the dialogue read like young adult fiction—lots of snark and angst—and the plot stayed in the realm of YA (dealing with siblings, teenage romance), however the narrative style/prose leaned towards more adult epic fantasy. It was a different combination (at least from what I have typically read), but it worked well for the story.
My only real criticism of the book would be that I found some of the female characters to be underdeveloped—the relationships were fairly one side and the teenage female characters, while courageous, were a bit too boy-oriented for me. But I fully concede that this could be more of my own concern, not a problem with the book.
The book ended in a compelling and satisfying way, while also providing the need for a sequel. The Changeling King is a great merger of young adult and epic fantasy and I would recommend it to any lover of both.