Monday, March 16, 2009

Hunter Brown and the Secret of the Shadow 1: Intro

The Miller brothers' Hunter Brown and the Secret of the Shadow is about Hunter Brown (large surprise), a fairly normal high-school student who discovers a twin universe (Solandria) oddly intertwined with our own (called the Veil). The book even begins with a cheerful note from Hunter saying that it tells about his death. (He got better. What a trouper!) This is the first installment of The Codebearers series.

Anyway... The story begins with an ill-conceived prank that imparts a life lesson to the reader: if you pull a prank on a major bully, always have an escape route set up. Preferably two or three.

Hunter and his friends Stretch and Stubbs aren't that foresighted, however, and they predictably wind up being rescued from a bad situation by a mysterious guy with an apparently minor quest. It mushrooms into a major quest, of course, in the form of a mysterious book, mysterious monsters, and more face time with the mysterious guy, leading inevitably to a dunk in a lake full of corpses. (You saw that coming, didn't you?)

So Hunter finds himself in the company of Hope, a girl roughly his own age, and Sam, a rather louche object roughly the age of Hunter's dad. They take him to Sanctuary, an idyllic floating chunk of rock. (All Solandria is made up of floating chunks of rock since arch-bad guy Sceleris brought a curse on the place.) There Hunter learns the Ways of the Force, or rather of the Code of Life, and he picks up some backstory.

The Backstory So Far: The Author creates everything for his own purposes, but one of his underlings, Sceleris, decided to claim a world for his own. He talked a kid into grabbing the Bloodstone, which unleashed a curse on all and sundry. The kid became Venator (you have five seconds to hiss the villain...), who with the help of Sceleris has nearly obliterated knowledge of the Author from Solandria and cast its twin world, the Veil, into ignorance even more abysmal than the media can generate. So the Author wrote up the truth about Life as the Code of Life and sent his son Aviad to organize the Resistance. The bad guys, known collectively as the Shadow, have a secret, and it's not that they know what evil lurks in the hearts of men. (Well, they probably do, actually.)

Hunter soon finds that he has been chosen to give Venator a cosmic wedgie and set things more or less right again, despite being his own worst enemy. Along the way, he will discover the Secret of the Shadow. Will the journey involve gross, frightening, and sometimes inspirational moments? Yup. Will Hunter get to use his lightsaber, I mean Veritas Sword, a lot? Soit'n'y!

Yes, you're right: if you're a kid, the preceding paragraph was the only one you should've bothered reading. Perhaps tomorrow's post on the good points of Hunter Brown and the Secret of the Shadow will be more conveniently organized, though I doubt it.

In the meantime, check out the other blogs on this conveniently organized list:
Brandon Barr
Keanan Brand
Melissa Carswell
Valerie Comer
Amy Cruson
CSFF Blog Tour
Stacey Dale
D. G. D. Davidson
Shane Deal
Jeff Draper
April Erwin
Karina Fabian
Marcus Goodyear
Todd Michael Greene
Katie Hart
Ryan Heart
Timothy Hicks
Jason Isbell
Cris Jesse
Jason Joyner
Carol Keen
Mike Lynch
Rebecca LuElla Miller
Wade Ogletree
John W. Otte
Steve Rice Yeah, you're looking at it. I enjoy self-referential humor.
Crista Richey
Chawna Schroeder
James Somers
Rachel Starr Thomson
Steve Trower
Speculative Faith
Fred Warren
Phyllis Wheeler
Jill Williamson


Rebecca LuElla Miller said...

I thought you gave a very complete summary, Steve. You hit all the right spots, I think.

Looking forward to finding out what you thought about it.


Aviad said...

I liked your Review. I agree, Hunter Brown and the secret of the shadow is THE BEST BOOK EVER!!!

Steve said...


You're agreeing with something I never said, then. It's a good book, even an above-average book in many respects, but not the "best ever." Even the least of the Chronicles of Narnia (The Magician's Nephew, IMO) is better. But then, modern Christian fiction doesn't give Hunter much competition.

Aviad1 said...

steve: Sorry, I meant that as:
I liked your Review. I agree{I accidentally put comma instead of period] [insert MY opinion] HBATSOTS is the BEST BOOK EVER!
[sorry if I confused you]

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