When two young brothers - Archibald and Jockabeb-find an old leather map hidden in the forest, they can't help but sneak out of the house to follow its path. So begins the first of the boys' adventures. After terrifying encounters with supernatural creatures, the boys meet a young Indian Brave who shares with them the tragic story of how he was separated from and tribe and placed under an evil spell. The saga leads the two brothers into Haktu's secret world behind the forest mist, and teaches them the power of friendship and loyalty in the face of untold evil. This is the first book in a 9 book series.
Plot/Idea: 10 out of 10
Originality: 9 out of 10
Prose: 9 out of 10
Character/Execution: 10 out of 10
Overall: 9.50 out of 10
In this creatively structured, wildly inventive inaugural entry in the Archibald and Jockabeb YA series, Collins introduces two boys with restless spirits who explore a serpentine path of excitement during the 1980s. A secret cave draws the curious boys inside and the adventure begins with creatures big and small, kind and antagonistic. There are universal lessons embedded into this story and much can be learned about friendship and family. Finely embellished with charcoal illustrations, this short book is a potent and addictive introductory volume with great promise.
Date Submitted: June 21, 2016