Series Week IV: Wrap-Up of the Underland Chronicles

Series Rating: 4/5

Reading through these books again was fun. I spotted a few things on this read-through that I missed before, such as foreshadowing and other clues. The prophecies are always interesting to read and to try to decipher, and the fact that they always mean something beyond what is taken at first-glance means that the reader is figuring things out along with the characters. Most of the action scenes were well-done in terms of excitement and suspense, and there were a few scenes that were downright chilling.

Gregor and Luxa are probably the two characters that developed the most throughout the series, although both delved into stupid and annoying territory far too often when they should have known better. Their relationship at the end of the series is not something I enjoyed reading at all, and I thought it was unnecessary and completely wrong–Gregor and Luxa should not have had any sort of romance at all, not at their age. However, I thought that their connection was well-developed and so it made their parting at the end so much more difficult to read about.

The overall issue of war and hatred that the series deals with has some good points to it, and Collins delivers the message quite well throughout the books, but the ending laid it on way too thick, diving deeply into “preachy” territory, and left the characters in a sort of limbo where the reader does not know how things will be resolved and finished. Moving the family to Virginia would have been the perfect ending for this series–but the fact that Collins refused to answer that question gives the series an unfinished feel.

As always, here is my book ranking of this series:

1.)    Gregor and the Marks of Secret

2.)    Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods

3.)    Gregor and the Code of Claw

4.)    Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane

5.)    Gregor the Overlander

It was really easy to rank these, all things considered. It helps that there are only five books in the series as opposed to, say, ten or thirteen.

Coming Up Next: I will be taking a couple of weeks off, but I will be back in September with The Gray Wolf Throne by Cinda Williams Chima!

 

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Series Week IV: Gregor and the Code of Claw

Gregor and the Code of Claw is the fifth and final book in the Underland Chronicles by Suzanne Collins. It was published in 2007 by Scholastic.

Genre: Fantasy, Middle Grade

Summary/Blurb:

“Everyone has been trying to keep Gregor from seeing the final prophecy, The Prophecy of Time. It says something awful, but Gregor never imagined just how awful: It  calls for the warrior’s death. The warrior being Gregor, of course.

Now, an army of rats is quickly approaching and Gregor’s mom and his little sister, Boots, are still in Regalia. In spite of the terrifying prophecy, Gregor must gather up his courage to defend Regalia and get his family back home safely. The entire existence of the Underland is in Gregor’s hands and time is running out. There is a code that must be cracked, a new princess to contend with, Gregor’s burgeoning dark side, and a war designed to end all wars.”

~Inside Flap

Passages/Quotes:

That was the cruelest thing Solovet had done to him, cut him off from the world. How could she do it? How could no one notice he was gone? It had been hours now, maybe days. Didn’t anyone even care where he was? Suddenly he was so upset he had to bite his lip so he didn’t start screaming.

And then something happened that changed his entire perception of the world. Gregor coughed. It was just a small cough. But the instant it left his mouth, it was as if lightning had struck the room. He could see! Okay, not see exactly, because it was still dark in his cell. But he could tell with absolute certainty the proximity of the wall across from him. It was almost as if a picture of it appeared in his head.

~Collins 98-99

And this was how Ripred found them as he swept into the room. “What’s going on in here?” His nose was twitching, clearly registering the lingering throw-up smell. Then his eyes landed on Lizzie, and he became still, too, except for the tip of his tail, which twitched from side to side. An expression came over his face that Gregor had never seen before. If he had to put a name to it, Gregor would have called it tenderness. The rat’s voice became positively gentle. “I didn’t know we had company. But I bet I can guess who you are. You’re Lizzie, aren’t you?”

~Collins 129

Cover Art 1

Warnings: Violence, death

Recommended Age Range: 12+

Rating: 4/5

What I Liked:

Wow, what a war-filled, battle-heavy book. It’s funny, when you think about it, how similar The Hunger Games and The Underland Chronicles are. They’re both messages about war and hatred, and how war changes people, just told in different ways for different audiences. Collins is clearly trying to say that working together, setting aside past hatreds, and getting along are much better than fighting, which is a message that everybody wants to hear but not a lot of people follow. Probably because nobody likes to think that they’re wrong.

Cover Art 2

Ripred, the revelations about you in this book only made me like you more. Also, Lizzie, you’re awesome, too. And Luxa, you actually learned something! Way to go, girl! Gregor…you had your stupid moments (like the whole thing with Ripred’s puzzle…that was just wince-worthy. Sorry, Gregor), but you had your awesome ones, as well. And, props for getting that echolocation down finally (as unrealistic as it is, but hey, it’s fantasy).

I feel like Solovet was the real villain of the series. The Bane was just a maniac. Solovet was arguably scarier, because her cold, ruthless manipulation (and the short revelations about what she did to Hamnet, her son) was terrible. And it caused her soldiers to be cold and ruthless.

What I Didn’t Like:

That ending was really bittersweet. Hopeful, but bittersweet. And, unfortunately, extremely unsatisfying. The message about war at the end was preachy and unnecessary, and the fact that we know nothing about what Gregor’s family will do makes everything seem unfinished. Are they leaving or aren’t they? The whole point of saying goodbye to the Underground was because they were moving to Virginia, but if they’re not, then what was the point? It would have been better to end it with the family moving, to signify a transition. But to not do that means that the end is stuck in a sort of limbo, moving neither forward nor backward.

Awww…fan art by fyredragon5 on deviantart

My main issue with the series: Gregor and Luxa. Sorry, but twelve-year-olds getting together is not something I want to read about. Twelve-year-olds have no business dating; they have plenty to deal with already without worrying about that. It needlessly complicates relationships and personal lives. Have they even hit puberty yet? Do they even know the full meaning and impact of the words “I love you?” Do they fully, completely understand what romantic love is? How can they, when adults don’t even understand it, or show it, or live it out? Now, I’m not saying that Gregor doesn’t, or shouldn’t, or can’t care about Luxa because of his age. I’m objecting to the nature of their relationship, not the fact that they have one in the first place. And it doesn’t matter if they “seem much older than they are” or whatever. They aren’t older than they are. I’m sorry, but twelve-year-olds in a relationship is not sweet, or cute, or endearing. It’s sad. It’s sad that a “me-first, do-whatever-you-want, live-while-you’re young” message is being shown. Sorry, Collins. I like your books, but I think you made a mistake with this one.

Overall Review:

Gregor and the Code of Claw delivers on action and character development. The conclusion to the Underground is satisfactory, but Gregor and his family’s ending is not. Their fate is left up in the air, leaving one to wonder if Gregor will just angst about the war and preach peace and love until the end of his days (sorry about the sarcasm, but it did get a little overbearing at the end). Also, Gregor and Luxa’s relationship makes me rage.

Coming Up Next: My wrap-up of the Underland Chronicles

Series Week IV: Gregor and the Marks of Secret

Gregor and the Marks of Secret is the fourth book in the Underland Chronicles by Suzanne Collins. It was published in 2006 by Scholastic.

Spoilers for The Underland Chronicles.

Genre: Fantasy, Middle Grade

Summary/Blurb:

“Now, with the third prophecy fulfilled, Gregor is drawn into a crisis. For generations, rats have run the mice—or “nibblers”—out of whatever lands they’ve claimed, keeping them on the move. But now the mice are disappearing, and the young queen Luxa is determined to find out why.

When Gregor joins her on a fact-finding mission, the true fate of the mice is revealed. It is something far more sinister than Gregor or Luxa had imagined—and it points the way to the final prophecy he has yet to fulfill. Will Gregor’s role as warrior and his abilities as a rager be put to the test?”

~Back Cover

Passages/Quotes:

“You didn’t raise me,” said the Bane. “Razor did. He’s the one who cared for me.”

“Yes, he’s the one who cared for you, and how did you repay him? Tell the warrior here, before he starts feeling too sorry for you. Go on; tell him!” shouted Ripred.

But the Bane did not continue. Instead, he trapped his long pink tail between his front paws and began to suck on the end of it.

“Oh, boo hoo hoo, the poor little abused Bane. But Razor treated him as his own pup. Went hungry so he could eat, protected him, tried to teach him to survive. And where is Razor now? Dead. And why? Because Pearlpelt here killed him over a crawler carcass,” said Ripred.

“I didn’t mean to,” whimpered the Bane. “I was hungry. I didn’t think it would kill Razor.”

“For you to knock him off a cliff? Well, that is the usual result,” said Ripred.

“I didn’t think he’d go over the cliff. I didn’t hit him that hard,” said Bane, his words garbled by his tail.

“And then you tried to eat his body to conceal the evidence.” Ripred turned to Gregor in disgust. “That’s how we found him. Soaked in Razor’s blood, chewing on his liver.”

~Collins 24-25

Cover Art 1

“No, no!” said Hazard in a shrill voice. “It is one of the marks of secret.”

“What’s that?” asked Gregor.

“A secret means of communication. An old collection of symbols that you could use to pass information to your allies but that were unknown to your enemies,” said Howard.

“But, Hazard, no one has used the marks of secret for centuries. They have lost all meaning,” said Luxa.

“Not in the jungle,” said Hazard. “We use them. Frill taught them to my father and he to me. That is the scythe.”

“And that means something bad?” said Gregor, nodding to the mark.

“It means death,” said Hazard, and he was starting to cry.

“It means someone will die?” said Luxa, holding him close.

“Not just someone,” said Hazard. “It means us! It means we who see it will die!”

~Collins 128-129

“Upon this crown my pledge I give.

To my last breath, I hold this choice.

I will your unjust deaths avenge,

All here who died without a voice.”

~Collins 185-186

Warnings: Violence, death

Recommended Age Range: 12+

Rating: 5/5

Cover Art 2 (yep, definitely like these better)

What I Liked:

The Bane is slightly creepy and disturbing, especially if you look at his first appearance in the tunnels with Ripred and Gregor (a part is quoted above), and then his appearance at the front of a rat horde. The transformation is shocking and more than a little menacing, and just gives further hype to the inevitable face-off between Gregor and the Bane.

Aw, the poor, poor mice. This is a really sad, hand-to-mouth-gasping book in regards to what the rats are doing to the mice. It makes Luxa’s reaction a little more understandable, even though you know that it won’t end well because Collins has been more-than-hinting that the solution lies elsewhere.

I like the fact that Collins diverted from the usual “they go on a quest and follow a prophecy” plot line that she used for the first three books. The prophecy in this book isn’t discovered until later, and after it’s a little too late to do anything other than just acknowledge it.

Obligatory cheer for Boots and Ripred. Yay!

Character development for Luxa! That’s been a long time coming. She’s still not completely there yet, but you can definitely see the change in her.

Fan art by n-arf on deviantart

What I Didn’t Like:

Gregor, why do you keep doing stupid things?

Oh, no, it’s the thing I’ve been dreading. I still won’t go into until the next book, but it involves Gregor, Luxa, their relationship, and their age.

Overall Review:

Gregor and the Marks of Secret is probably the saddest in the Underland Chronicles. It really brings to mind the Holocaust, in a way. Also, the Bane finally appears as a villain and there is lots of buildup for the final book. This is another series where the books get better and better, and I love that.

Coming Up Next: Gregor and the Code of Claw

Series Week IV: Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods

Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods is the third book in the Underland Chronicles by Suzanne Collins. It was published in 2005 by Scholastic.

Spoilers for The Underland Chronicles.

Genre: Fantasy, Middle Grade

Summary/Blurb:

“Book Two left off with Gregor reading the Prophecy of Blood: a prophecy that calls for Gregor and Boots to return to the Underland to help ward off a deadly plague. But this time, Gregor’s mother refuses to let him return to the Underland…until the rat Ripred assures the family that Gregor and Boots are just needed for a short meeting, which the crawlers will attend only if their “princess” Boots is present. Gregor’s mom finally relents, on the condition that she go with them. The Underland plague is spreading, and when one of Gregor’s family is stricken, he begins to understand his role in the Prophecy of Blood, and must summon all his power to end the biological warfare that threatens the warmblooded creatures of the Underland.”

~Inside Flap

Passages/Quotes:

Warmblood now a bloodborne death

Will rob your body of its breath,

Mark your skin, and seal your fate.

The Underland becomes a plate.

Turn and turn and turn again.

You see the what but not the when.

Remedy and wrong entwine

And so they form a single vine.

Bring the warrior from above

If yet his heart is swayed by love.

Bring the princess or despair,

No crawlers care without her there.

Turn and turn and turn again.

You see the what but not the when.

Remedy and wrong entwine

And so they form a single vine.

Those whose blood runs red and hot

Must join to seek the healing spot.

In the cradle find the cure

For that which makes the blood impure.

Turn and turn and turn again.

You see the what but not the when.

Remedy and wrong entwine

And so they form a single vine.

Gnawer, human, set aside

The hatreds that reside inside.

If the flames of war are fanned,

All warmbloods lose the Underland.

Turn and turn and turn again.

You see the what but not the when.

Remedy and wrong entwine

And so they form a single vine.

~Collins 24-25

Cover Art 1

Hamnet turned back and surveyed the group. The half smile still played on his lips. There was a long silence.

“Oh, look. It’s Hamnet. He’s not dead,” said Ripred finally. The rat picked up what appeared to be a human skull and started to gnaw on it.

“The skull is a nice touch, Ripred,” said Hamnet.

“I thought so. How’ve you been?” said Ripred.

~Collins 151

“Why is it called bubble gum?” asked Hamnet, taking his piece out of his mouth to examine it.

“Because of this.” Gregor blew a bubble and popped it with a loud crack. Everyone jumped.

“Don’t do that! We’re edgy enough in here as it is!” said Ripred.

“It didn’t win me a lot of points with the Regalians. Now everybody hates me. Rats and humans.”

Hamnet laughed. “Not everybody. Ripred clearly adores you.”

“Oh, yeah, I’m a big favorite of his,” said Gregor. “Probably wondering right now how I’ll taste for dinner.”

“Might be, if you were something besides skin and bones,” called Ripred.

Gregor blew a bubble and gave it a loud pop.

“Cut that out!” snarled Ripred.

~Collins 198-200

Warnings: Violence, death.

Recommended Age Range: 12+

Rating: 5/5

Cover Art 2 (I like these versions a lot more than the others)

What I Liked:

This is where I really started getting into the series. The first two books were good, but this book gave that hook that made me want to keep reading more right away.

Collins always makes sure to highlight the animosity between the humans and the rats (the world versus the rats, really) and Gregor’s views of that anger. It’s quite clear that she is trying to show the reader that this is the most important issue at stake here; this is the thing that must be overcome in order for things to change. Gregor, in a way, is the catalyst for things changing because of what he thinks, feels, and how he challenges the others. Of course, Gregor also falls into the “hating the rats” mentality occasionally, and so it is that much harder to overcome. However, it is clearly Luxa who is the focal point; until she gets over her hatred, no one will. And so far, that’s not happening, if the whole quicksand thing is any indication.

Oh, Ripred and Boots. Ripred, you’re a jerk sometimes, but you act like that because you know how to survive, and you’re trying to get others to survive, especially Gregor. Ripred also is there to show the Regalians (and the readers) a different side of the rats.

Speaking of jerks, Gregor can be really annoying, but he learns from his mistakes and tries to make them better. But still…sometimes you want to shake him because he just doesn’t get it.

Fan art by JillLenaD on deviantart

Oh, man, I totally missed the part the first time through when Boots is spinning around and Gregor is like, “Uh, no, Boots, wrong way.” Nice, Collins. Nice.

Interesting note: Hamnet said that Ripred “clearly adores” Gregor. He could have just been joking, but…I think he’s closer to the truth than Gregor seems to think. I just found this interesting, especially when Ripred says, “Who’s my favorite warrior?” in another scene. I think Ripred likes Gregor more than he lets on.

Other interesting note: Solovet was originally going to go on the quest. Knowing what we find out in this book, did she have some sort of ulterior motive? Probably. She probably wanted to make sure that no one suspected the truth.

Final interesting note: Vikus and Solovet’s children are Hamnet, Susannah, and Judith. That’s a Shakespeare reference if I ever heard one.

What I Didn’t Like:

Like I said above, Gregor is really dense in this book. He does and says some really stupid things. Sometimes I wished he would just stop talking or jumping to conclusions.

Luxa, you’re still annoying, too. You’re getting better, though.

Overall Review:

Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods reveals more of Collins’ great worldbuilding and continues to show how much needs to be fixed in the Underland, and that the underlying conflict is not the plague or the impending war, but the hatred between the rats and the humans. The prophecy again proves to be more complex, and tensions continue to rise. Lots of action and suspense will leave you (or me, at least) wanting the next book.

Coming Up Next: Gregor and the Marks of Secret

Series Week IV: Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane

Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane is the second book in The Underland Chronicles by Suzanne Collins. It was published in 2004 by Scholastic.

Minor spoilers for The Underland Chronicles.

Genre: Fantasy, Middle Grade

Summary/Blurb:

“In the months since Gregor first encountered the strange Underland beneath New York City, he’s sworn he won’t ever go back. But when another prophecy, this time about an ominous white rat known as the Bane, calls for Gregor’s help, the Underlanders know the only way they can get his attention is through his little sister, Boots. Now Gregor’s quest reunites him with his bat, Ares, the rebellious princess Luxa, and new allies and sends them through the dangerous and deadly Waterway in search of the Bane. Then Gregor must face the possibility of his greatest loss yet, and make life and death choices that will determine the future of the Underland.”

~Goodreads

Passages/Quotes:

If Under fell, if Over leaped,

If life was death, if death life reaped,

Something rises from the gloom

To make the Underland a tomb.

Hear it scratching down below,

Rat of long-forgotten snow,

Evil cloaked in coat of white

Will the warrior drain your light?

What could turn the warrior weak?

What do burning gnawers seek?

Just a barely speaking pup

Who holds the land of Under up.

Die the baby, die his heart,

Die his most essential part.

Die the peace that rules the hour.

Gnawers have their key to power.

~Collins 39-40

Cover Art 1

“Fo-Fo, too loud!” [Boots] said, tugging on one of his wings. “Shh, Fo-Fo!”

“Fo-Fo? Fo-Fo? I am he called Photos Glow-Glow and will answer to no other name!” said Photos Glow-Glow.

“She’s just a little kid. She can’t say Photos Glow-Glow,” said Gregor.

“Well, then, I cannot understand her!” said the firefly.

“Allow me to translate,” Twitchtip said, not even bothering to move. “She said if you don’t stop your incessant babble, that big rat sitting in the boat next to you will rip your head off.”

The silence that followed was blissful.

~Collins 120-121

Warnings: Violence, death

Recommended Age Range: 12+

Rating: 4/5

What I Liked:

The plot is much more complex in this book than in the first one. The resolution of this prophecy makes it apparent that what is taken at face value is rarely the true answer. And yet, what is taken at face value is often true, as well. In this case, both the first interpretation of the prophecy and the one that was actually the correct resolution were true, technically.

Cover Art 2

Oh, Ripred. I like you more with each book. The same goes for Boots, Temp, and Ares. I also really like Howard. Luxa, also, is not as annoying as in the first book, probably because she’s been through a lot. She still sounds like she’s fifteen rather than eleven, though. So does Gregor.

This book marks the beginning (or the start, rather) of the overarching plot of the series. The first book was mostly set-up to introduce the characters and the setting. This book, however, starts the ball rolling with the Bane and more introspective into the human/rat conflict, among other things. The ending, too, is much more open and dangling than the first. There are still questions left to be answered and issues to be resolved. It’s a self-contained plot in an overarching plot line; like the episodes of a TV show, sort of, but more connected, if that makes sense.

What I Didn’t Like:

Convenient items, like I said about the first book. If Gregor takes something from the museum, it will be important. And usually life-saving. And everything will be used in some way. The most extreme example of this is the candy bars Gregor brings along. Also, the root beer from the first book.

Again from the first book, the age of the characters not matching up with their voice and actions. So, technically, the issues that I have are more to do with the series itself, rather than each individual book.

Luxa

Overall Review:

Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane is technically “the beginning” of the Underland Chronicles, since it starts the main plot arc and builds off of the foundation set up in the first book. There are some genuinely funny moments in the book, mostly thanks to Twitchtip and Ripred, and a few heart-pumping moments of tension and/or action (I’ve always found Bug Island particularly chilling).

Coming Up Next: Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods

Series Week IV: Gregor the Overlander

Gregor the Overlander is written by Suzanne Collins, of The Hunger Games fame. It was published in 2003 by Scholastic. It is the first book in The Underland Chronicles. Collins’ website can be found here.

Genre: Fantasy, Middle Grade

Summary/Blurb:

“When eleven-year-old Gregor follows his little sister through a grate in the laundry room of their New York apartment building, he hurtles into the dark Underland beneath the city. There, humans live uneasily beside giant spiders, bats, cockroaches, and rats—but the fragile peace is about to fall apart.

Gregor wants no part of a conflict between these creepy creatures. He just wants to find his way home. But when he discovers that a strange prophecy foretells a role for him in the Underland’s uncertain future, he realizes it might be the only way to solve the biggest mystery of his life. Little does he know his quest will change him and the Underland forever.”

~Back Cover

Passages/Quotes:

Beware, Underlanders, time hangs by a thread.

The hunters are hunted, white water runs red.

The gnawers will strike to extinguish the rest.

The hope of the hopeless resides in a quest.

An Overland warrior, a son of the sun,

May bring us back light, he may bring us back none.

But gather your neighbors and follow his call

Or rats will most surely devour us all.

Two over, two under, of royal descent,

Two flyers, two crawlers, two spinners assent.

One gnawer beside and one lost up ahead.

And eight will be left when we count up the dead.

The last who will die must decide where he stands.

The fate of the eight is contained in his hands.

So bid him take care, bid him look where he leaps,

As life may be death and death life again reaps.

~Collins 109

Boots singled out one roach in particular and patted it between the antennas. “Hi, you! Go ride? We go ride?”

“Knows me, the princess, knows me?” said the roach in awe, and all the other roaches gave little gasps. Even the humans and bats exchanged looks of surprise.

“We go ride? More ride?” said Boots. “Beeg Bug take Boots ride!’ she said, patting him more vigorously on the head.

“Gentle, Boots,” said Gregor, hurrying to catch her hand. He placed it softly on the bug’s head. “Be gentle, like with puppy dogs.”

“Oh, gen-tle, gen-tle,” said Boots, lightly bouncing her palm on the roach. It quivered with joy.

“Knows me, the princess, knows me?” the roach whispered. “Recalls she the ride, does she?”

~Collins 149-150

Cover Art 1 (yeah, it’s pretty blah, isn’t it?)

Warnings: Violence

Recommended Age Range: 12+

Rating: 3/5

What I Liked:

This series is what introduced me to Collins, and how I started reading The Hunger Games (I liked this series, so when The Hunger Games came out I picked it up. That’s right. I read The Hunger Games before it was popular). I loved this series a lot when I read it the first time. It was simple, yet also complex. I loved the way everything had a purpose. I loved the rhyming prophecies (something I picked up from Redwall, which has a lot of riddles). It’s been a few years since I last read these books, so I’m interested to see what has changed about my perception of them.

I love the characters in this book and how each species in the Underland has their own unique characteristic that sets them apart. There are not many characters that I actively dislike. Boots and Ripred are by far my favorites. Boots is just adorable, and Ripred has great snark. I also like Temp, and how steadfast he is. Oh, and Ares. It’s not so evident here, but Ares is great in the next books, when certain things happen.

Fan art!

I think I enjoyed this book more because I knew what was coming, rather than because of its own merit. This is definitely a series with an overarching plot line, so characters develop more slowly, over the course of a few books, rather than all at once in one. It’s evident that this is the first in a series, but Collins does a great job of worldbuilding and setting things up for the next books. This book could be a standalone, almost; the other books cannot.

One of the things I like best about this series is the prophecies, and how they are fulfilled. The rhyming is a little cheesy, sure, but they’re never what they first appear. It’s the complexity to them that I like, even if they seem simple at first.

Cover Art 2 (this one’s a little better)

What I Didn’t Like:

This is the type of plot where everything is convenient. Everything that Gregor picks up at the beginning of his journey saves the day at the exact right time. It gets to the point where you know that everything that Gregor has on him in each book will be used, eventually, and usually in some sort of important way. The root beer in this book, for instance. It’s interesting how creative Collins can get, but it is still really, really convenient.

One of the main problems I have with the series is Gregor’s age. He’s only eleven, but he acts and sounds more like thirteen or fourteen. And, yeah, maybe that has to do with his dad disappearing and so he had to grow up quickly and so is more mature than the average eleven-year-old. Okay, sure. But his voice is still off. Also, Luxa is only eleven, too, but she acts and sounds more like fifteen. The point is, neither of these characters act or even sound like they’re eleven, so why make them eleven? Because it’s a middle grade novel? There’s also another reason why I have a problem with their age, but I won’t get into that until the last two books when it shows up.

I had a few issues with the writing style here and there, but it’s a middle grade novel so I was expecting that.

Overall Review:

Gregor the Overlander is probably the weakest book in the series, mainly because it’s mostly set-up and worldbuilding for the next four books. However, I always love books centered on quests and these quests come complete with a prophecy to follow, which is great fun to read and try to decipher. Some interesting characters are introduced that will be sure to draw the reader into the next book to see what happens to them.

Coming Up Next: Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane