The Realms of Animar
By Owen Black
Hardcover: 370 pages
Publisher: Outskirts Press (March 23, 2012)
The Realms of Animar is an enjoyable read, one that will appeal to teens who are fans of fantasy and science fiction.
Set in a world where people have two forms, one human and one animal, this is the story of Thane, a teenage boy whose life is suddenly turned upside down when his animal form unexpectedly transforms into something never seen before. Filled with inmmense power, he now holds the key to the future of Animar and to saving his people from struggle and oppression. But Fatalis, the evil force who plans to rule Animar, learns about Thane and creates an army to destroy him and anybody who gets in the way of his plan. In order to fight Fatalis, Thane seeks the help of other beings, the Avians and Aquans. In a twist of fate, the hunters and the hunted must get together to save their world.
Though the beginning was kind of slow, with a lot of information being presented by dialogue, I was intrigued with the story enough to keep reading. The author does a fairly good job in creating his medieval world–which, by the way, doesn’t have dragons, elves or magic like so many other books in this genre nowadays–and dividing it into five realms: Herbivore, Carnic, Avian, Aquan and Reptilian. I enjoyed the action, battle scenes, and watching Thane grow into a brave, fearless warrior and hero. Though it has some violence, the language and other aspects make this book appropriate for the lower young adult crowd and even for middle graders.
Recommended for readers 11 & up.
Reviewed by Mayra Calvani (www.MayraCalvani.com)