Freeglader by Paul Stewart


Regular readers will recall that I am a fan of children’s or young adult fantasy series. I have been reading a number of series as new books come out. One such series is the Edge Chronicles by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell. Although I haven’t really reviewed each book in the series, I have discussed the series as a whole.

In fact, in that post I outlined the series pretty well:

The first three books follow the lead character Twig from his intial adventure in the Deepwoods through his search for the magical stormphrax with his real father and his subsequent flight out into the void of open sky where the entire crew is scattered across the Edge. But the Curse of the Gloamgozer goes back in time to explore the story of Twig’s father and mother. The next three books in the series (The Last Sky Pirate, and the yet to be released in the states Vox and Freeglader) focus on the Rook Barkwater character and take place fifty years after the end of Midnight Over Sanctaphrax.

The most recent book I have read is Freeglader book seven and, as noted above, last in the Rook Barkwater stretch of books (5,6,7). This volume, like the other books, is a complicated mix of characters and story lines. Freeglader, however, connects and explains much of the series so far by relating the history of Rook’s family tree.

Because of a series of violent storms Undertown is flooding and the inhabitants must flee and seek out a new life in the Free Glades. So Rook Barkwater and the librarian knights, the ghosts of Screetown, the remaining sky pirates, and even a few banderbears band together for the long journey. This involves a perilous journey across the mire and through the deepwoods with both the goblins and shrykes plotting war. To make it more complicated Rook has lost his memory in a sepia storm and his friend Xanth is being ostracized for the crimes he previously committed as a former Night Guardian. All of this tension builds up to a spectacular battle that will decide the fate of the Free Glades.

Aimed at grades 4-7, The Edge Chroncles creates an alternate mythical world full of fantastic creatures and adventures. The stories are imagintive and nicely illustrated. If you know of kids in this age group who are looking for reading material this is a fun series.

Kevin Holtsberry
I work in communications and public affairs. I try to squeeze in as much reading as I can while still spending time with my wife and two kids (and cheering on the Pittsburgh Steelers and Michigan Wolverines during football season).

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