Saturday, April 17, 2010

Raven's Gate

Once I find an author I enjoy, I try to read everything that person has written. It stands to reason that if I enjoyed one book by him, then I would enjoy the rest. I have found that logic to be pretty sound, but there are a few exceptions.

Anthony Horowitz is one of those exceptions. Horowitz is the author of the Alex Rider series I'v written about before - James Bond for junior high and high school students.

I was in the young adult section of our library, looking for the next book in the Alex Rider series, when I found Raven's Gate, book one of The Gatekeeper series. I picked it up, thinking I'd be proactive, reading it before my 11-year-old asked.

And I am so glad I did.

Horowitz is a great writer, and Raven's Gate is no exception. It's the subject I dislike.

Raven's Gate is about a teenage boy, Matt Freeman, who finds himself in a very sticky situation - a robbery where his friend kills a guard. He's offered a chance at a new program for first-time juvenile offenders - go to live with Mrs. Deverill in Lesser Malling instead of going to jail. He doesn't really care, so they send him to Lesser Malling.

Strange things start to happen, and Matt discovers he has some strange abilities.

Raven's Gate is a very creepy book - very creepy. There are references to human sacrifice, clairvoyance, ESP and worship of ancient beings, among other things.

Here's the thing - I believe in a spiritual world and spiritual beings. And I believe that messing with these beings is dangerous, as depicted in this book. I also believe that Jesus Christ defeated Satan and his followers at his Resurrection, and I believe followers of Jesus are able to defeat spiritual forces by His power, and not their own.

In Raven's Gate, Matt is able to escape and defeat his enemies with the help of other people, and his own special powers.

Horowitz himself, in the interview in the back of the book, describes the Alex Rider series and James Bond for teenagers. He then compares The Gatekeeper series with Steven King for teenagers.

I do not want my children tempted to start down that dark path, so these books will not be on our reading list.

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