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The Emerald Atlas

By: John Stephens

Books of Beginning Series Bk 1

In the middle of the night on Christmas Eve, Kate, Michael and Emma are taken from their beds and left at an orphanage. Ten years and a string of increasingly miserable orphanages later, the children have learnt to rely on themselves and each other. The memories of their parents have faded though they try desperately to cling to them. Kate has taken it upon herself to keep everyone together and as safe as possible. Michael has retreated into a world of photos, exploration and imagination – largely to do with dwarves. And Emma has grown a thick and stubborn skin unable to unwilling to let anyone get passed it.

They arrive at Cambridge Falls, sure this will be the worst place yet, and quickly realise something strange is going on. While exploring the old house they discover an old leather bound book and in opening it set into motion an ancient magical prophesy. They journey together across time, meet beings they never dreamed existed and find they have to save an entire town. Are they brave enough to confront their fears and fulfill their destinies? Are they strong enough to give of themselves to more than each other?

This is a detailed and sweeping tale of three children just trying to survive and stay together. I was drawn in and drawn along as the story of not only the children but the people of Cambridge Falls unfolded. The characters are well developed and each goes through their own ups and downs and you are happy to stay with them as they do. The supporting characters make the central story possible, giving it depth and heart. This is the start of a journey that is full of action and laced with humour – some of which seems to me very tongue in cheek, but that makes it no less enjoyable. A fantasy world I will willingly return to.


Publisher: Random House Children’s Books

Published: 14 April 2011

Format: Hardback 432 pages

Categories: Fantasy

ISBN 13: 9780857530189

Purchase: here

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