The Lion Awakens by Buffy Andrews

The Lion Awakens by Buffy Andrews
Publisher: Prism Book Group
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, YA
Length: Full Length (218 Pages)
Age Recommendation: 14+
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Cyclamen

Two worlds, two teens, two destinies…

For thirteen years, Annie Lange and David McClure believed their parents were killed in fiery car crashes. They learn the truth about the past when they find hidden messages in anonymous gifts left on their front porches. The notes lead them to a mentor who helps them discover and master their special powers, powers they will need if they have any chance of saving their world from the tyrant Goliath.

When the lion awakens, their world is forever changed…

Annie and David meet and become good friends as they learn about their shared history. They find out about a parallel universe which Annie’s mother and David’s father came from. They learn about their own special powers. And they learn about the tyrant Goliath who is planning to come from the parallel universe and conquer this universe.

Many people end up with their lives turned upside down, but for Annie and David, their lives would never be the same. I thought the plot was well thought out with good pacing. I was totally drawn into the novel from the beginning and believed in the story’s reality. I was at Annie’s and David’s sides as they raced to save the world. I liked both of them, as well as the supporting characters of Peter and Gabriel, their mentors.

This is also a coming of age story and Annie and David are typical adolescents with their own problems at school. Each has a best friend, but otherwise is pretty much alone. And they aren’t above using their powers for a bit of payback.

The characters are well-fleshed out and ring true. Some events happen a bit too easily, and Annie’s father and David’s mother are very understanding and easily fooled. Of course, both Annie and David have always been good kids, so the parents don’t have any reason to be suspicious, and Annie especially really gets upset when she has to lie to protect her father.

I found the ending of the book very unsettling. I’m not sure if it was left open for a sequel or just so that each reader can decide for her/himself what happens next, but I really wanted more clarity. However, that is my personal preference and readers who like an ending which leaves much unsaid will be very happy with this one. It is certainly dramatic in an understated way.

Lovers of fantasy, especially those interested in exploring parallel universes, are sure to enjoy The Lion Awakens. I look forward to reading more from this author.

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